Educating and protecting the mobile workforce
Failure to offer end user training stands to make or break a company’s financial or human capital investment in new products and business initiatives
I recently shared my thoughts on improving new technology adoption rates. While these components are helpful to reducing IT project failures, the mobile workforce requires some additional attention and special considerations.
The always on, always available mobile workforce expects the same access for new technology training. In my experience, they typically prefer to engage in mandatory end user training on their time and wherever possible. As IT leaders, it’s no longer optional for instructional training to be made available online; we’re required to offer 24/7 access.
For hourly and non-exempt employees, it’s important to consult with HR when establishing access to training modules and tools after normal business hours. Online training sessions – whether live or recorded – are essential to give opportunities for the end users to learn at their pace and at their own time. It does not mean, however, that traditional instructional training is outdated. Live instructional training is equally important to address user questions in a personal way that may not be available with online training might not address.
Cyber threats are rapidly evolving as businesses move information to the cloud. Security concerns repeatedly rank highest among CIOs’ top concerns, so we have to proactively educate our end users on increasingly pervasive email phishing and ransomware attacks.
Social engineering and man in the middle attacks are on the rise and a threat type to which the average user may not be aware. Here at Sibcy Cline, we recently engaged the local chapter of InfraGard for a session with all our managers to explain the rapidly evolving cyber threat landscape and it’s potential impacts to our industry. To ensure our employees and end users are prepared to properly handle these issues when they arise, we reviewed our existing processes and procedures to address the changing security threats. One of the biggest challenges is ensuring complete top management buy-in to educate the end user community. You are ultimately only as strong and secure as your weakest link.
Failure to offer end user training stands to make or break a company’s financial or human capital investment in new products and business initiatives. End user training, when conducted properly, stands to significantly increase employee (user) productivity and help meet business objectives while keeping companies secure and building trust in the IT systems and processes.
Vinit Kohli is VP of MIS at Sibcy Cline Inc.