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COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

  • 1.  COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    GPUG ALL STAR
    Posted 30 days ago
    Edited by Zubin Gidwani 30 days ago

    This week large West coast businesses, universities, and schools are asking their staff and students to work from home.  In discussions with a few customers, we thought it might be a good idea to create a list of considerations for you to review should your business choose to work from home / if your office complex faced a closure / or if a staff member tested positive.  Here is a start that a few of us have put together:


    Check Printing

    In the case of an office closure, would you take blank check stock, the MICR toner cartridge, and the check Printer home?
    Do you encourage new vendors to sign up for ACH Payments?

    GP Workflows

    If you are out-of-office or a colleague is unavailable, would any of your GP workflows get hung up, would you need to adjust, re-assign, or temporarily disable anything in advance of wondering why something isn't flowing as expected?

     

    SQL Database Backups

    Never hurts to check with IT and make sure you have nightly backups of GP and other critical related databases (budgeting, reporting, membership, CRM)
    You should also test that a nightly backup can be restored to a test system to ensure that the backups are accessible and that the current IT team is familiar with the restore process.

      

    Remote Access

    Do you have Adequate Citrix or Terminal Server licensing for your accounting staff & financial analysts?

    If you don't have remote access, you might want to consider:

    Citrix alternatives such as https://tsplus.net

    Or something as basic as GotoMyPC.com or  Team Viewer/LogMeIn

    ** Have Your Staff test their remote access before they NEED IT **

     

    AntiVirus

    Will you be remoting in from a home machine or a work laptop?

    Make sure AntiVirus is installed, up-to-date, and compliant with your IT department's requirements.

     

    Social Media

    Do Not access social websites while you are on a VPN or remoting into your work networks if you are on your home PC.

     

    Remember to Logoff from the remote session

    Don't just click the X in the upper right of the remote access window, your apps keep running and tie up the server's processing power, slowing the performance for all other users.

    Use:

    File Menu / Exit from GP

    Windows Start Menu / Logoff or Disconnect

    Use Strong Passwords

    Enough said...

     

    Please respond with other suggestions so we are not caught by surprise




    ------------------------------
    Zubin Gidwani
    Founder, Dynamic Budgets
    San Francisco-Bay Area CA
    ------------------------------


  • 2.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    GPUG ALL STAR
    Posted 29 days ago
    This is an excellent, not to mention timely, post, so thanks a lot, Zubin!

    If the community would like a webinar on this remote topic, where time would be allocated for Q&A, please let @Lisa Lucas or me know and we'll schedule something like this soon!​​

    ------------------------------
    Bob McAdam
    General Manager
    Dynamic Communities
    Tampa, FL
    bob.mcadam@dynamiccommunities.com
    ------------------------------



  • 3.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    GPUG ALL STAR
    Posted 29 days ago
    Edited by Abra Gilman 28 days ago
    Thanks for including some of the points I brought up while we were discussing this Zubin.  It has been surreal to have to cancel trips to GPUG community meetings, client site meetings, & even family trips.

    But we've had several of our customers assist them in setting up additional terminal servers and web servers so their employees can work from home.

    In addition to the list we already can up with, additional thoughts are figuring out which servers and folders to make accessible to folks accessing remotely. Some have chosen to move the locations of their modified reports and forms to not expose all their servers to remote logins.

    I'm sure the list will grow as our lifestyles have definitely changed during this pandemic.  But it does remind me of a time when Great Plains had their support reps stay home instead of trying to travel to work in the Blizzard of...perhaps 1998 or so. It was before SO many people worked remotely, and they seemed to be "ready" for it. Yep, those Fargonians sure were trailblazers!

    ------------------------------
    Abra Gilman
    Dynamics GP Practice Manager
    GPUG All*Star
    Collins Computing, Inc.
    Dynamics GP ERP Partner
    Bend, Oregon (Headquarters in Southern California)
    www.collinscomputing.com
    ------------------------------



  • 4.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    GPUG ALL STAR
    Posted 28 days ago
    Thank you @Abra Gilman & @Zubin Gidwani for sharing this.
    As for file shares ​​​to company's employees, think about SharePoint online for those who have O365 subscriptions, as it's mostly included and Teams gets all this tied nicely together, whith groups and chats.
    Other solutions like DropBox, Box, MEGA and many others have enterprise subscriptions which allows IT admins to manage multiple accesses to shared folder in the cloud.. another way to not have to change too many inside shares to accomodate temporary working people from home.
    Good luck to all and stay safe at home.

    ------------------------------
    Beat Bucher
    Business Analyst, Dynamics GP SME
    Montreal QC/Canada
    @GP_Beat http://www.gp-geek.com
    Montreal QC GPUG Chapter Leader
    MBS MVP (2015-2018)
    All-Star 2013
    ------------------------------



  • 5.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    TOP CONTRIBUTOR
    Posted 27 days ago
    Thank you Zubin.  I'm currently preparing an updated business continuity plan for my department (since our current one seemed to address any emergency except a global pandemic.....).  We are already all using virtual desktops which has us ahead of the game, but the reminder about what to do about check stock was a good one.  In the previous plan, we were taking stock to an alternate location or suspending payments for a couple weeks.  In this scenario, I'm going to have to plan for someone taking stock home and what extra security measures would we need around that.

    ------------------------------
    Kathy Kim
    Director of Finance
    Donor Network of Arizona
    Phoenix AZ
    ------------------------------



  • 6.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    Posted 24 days ago
    A bunch of companies are offering free/discounted services to help out:
    https://openforbusiness.org/

    ------------------------------
    Chris Adaline
    Wounded Warrior Project, Inc.
    Jacksonville FL
    ------------------------------



  • 7.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    GPUG ALL STAR
    Posted 23 days ago
    Edited by Zubin Gidwani 23 days ago
    Ok New Recommendation:

    Call your home internet provider and increase the speed of your connections if you are to be working from home.
    Today while working with customers who were working from home we saw the good, the bad and the Ugly.

    Remember that your entire family will likely be on the internet at the same time.
    If you are working from home, your employer may reimburse you for the ISP charges, for you to be 10x more productive than you might be on a slow connection.
    Consider that not only will your household be a bottleneck, but your neighborhood may become oversaturated as well.

    Discuss with your ISP your options, and then maybe go up one plan from their recommendation.
    Try to do so sooner rather than later.

    Take care everyone!

    ------------------------------
    Zubin Gidwani
    Founder
    Dynamic Budgets
    San Francisco-Bay Area CA
    ------------------------------



  • 8.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    GPUG ALL STAR
    Posted 22 days ago
    Edited by Zubin Gidwani 22 days ago
    Please tell your staff to either forward their office phone to their cell phone, or change their email signature to include their cell phone so we can return their help requests.

    We are seeing more help requests from employees struggling with remote access glitches while working from home.
    It will help your consultants reach you more quickly if you have a cell phone contact in your help requests AND in your email signatures.

    Thanks!


  • 9.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    GPUG ALL STAR
    Posted 17 days ago
    If you are in need of a Noise Cancelling headset to suppress the background noise of your screaming kids in the other room, we did an exhaustive search and found this to be about the best  Blue Parrot BT450XT.  It is the preferred headset of Semi Truckers, there are youtube videos of them driving down the freeway with the window open and the other party doesn't hear any background noise.

    When you research Noise Cancelling headsets, standard Bose, and Sony offerings tout their ability to block out background noises to not interrupt you hearing your music.  When BlueParrot refers to noise-canceling it is in regards to suppressing background noise on your microphone so others can clearly hear you in noisy environments. (ie sounding like you work in a professional office space, even though the heard of elephants and screaming banshees are going off in the living room)
    the 450 single earpiece is the best quality (for noise cancellation within the microphone) that they offer. A single earpiece is useful when you still want to hear other noises in your household. (good for moms - ie want to still be tethered to the kids)  : )

    there is a dual earpiece (stereo headphone option) but the noise cancellation isn't as strong, but it might be better if you need to ignore the background noises in your house, you can't hear much of anything with the two earpieces on. (good for Dad's who aren't engaged with the kids)  : )

    There is a later version, the 550, but there are a lot of complaints about the quality and performance, so consider the 450 as top of the line.

    My only complaint is that the earpiece fits on the ear, not around the ear,
    The headset is a bit tight and it felt like it was crushing my ear into my skull...
    I ordered the following around the ear, earpiece and its soo much more comfortable.
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00ZGGG3KY/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o06_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
    did a minor hack job making a donut looking adapter from a CD Jewel case, and it works like a charm.



     


    ------------------------------
    Zubin Gidwani
    Founder
    Dynamic Budgets
    San Francisco-Bay Area CA
    ------------------------------



  • 10.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    Posted 17 days ago
    I found a utility to help with background noise and it's been working pretty well for me so far.  They have recently expanded their free plan to help out with so many people working from home: https://krisp.ai/blog/covid19-response/

    ------------------------------
    Chris Adaline
    Wounded Warrior Project, Inc.
    Jacksonville FL
    ------------------------------



  • 11.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    GPUG ALL STAR
    Posted 17 days ago
    If you're looking for a very affordable noise-cancelling headset of decent quality to isolate yourself from the noisy background and ambience around your desk, then I can warmly recommend the MPow BT headsets.
    I've been using the H10 model (wich I think has been replaced now by the H12) since last year and it's proven to be excellent. When I wear it, even without listening to music, and switch on the NC feature, I don't even hear the noise of my central HAVC system anymore. It's total quietness around me.
    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07RXXJ8YD?pd_rd_w=Byhlw&pf_rd_p=40f58d87-76a1-42d8-86c6-e1c4c3b47384&pd_rd_wg=zIhnE&pf_rd_r=51617X64C41WS66W0YTX&pd_rd_r=3932d9d7-b2d0-4fad-9d92-9c48a475b16e
    There is a built-in Mic for audio calls, but I've been told by other parties that I don't sound as clear as my wired Mpow headset which has a dedicated mic on a flexible extension, but from which I don't like the ear pieces as much, as it don't cover the ear completely and hurts after wearing it for a couple hours.
    Look for over-the-ear pieces, as they are much more confy to wear and isolate completely from outside noise.

    ------------------------------
    Beat Bucher
    Business Analyst, Dynamics GP SME
    Montreal QC/Canada
    @GP_Beat http://www.gp-geek.com
    Montreal QC GPUG Chapter Leader
    MBS MVP (2015-2018)
    All-Star 2013
    ------------------------------



  • 12.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    GPUG ALL STAR
    Posted 3 days ago
    Also, don't forget about the company Turtle, Fish, or other Animals!  Who's taking them home?

    ------------------------------
    Zubin Gidwani
    Founder
    Dynamic Budgets
    San Francisco-Bay Area CA
    ------------------------------



  • 13.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    TOP CONTRIBUTOR
    Posted 3 days ago
    Zubin and Abra's webinar yesterday was GREAT!  I'd highly recommend everyone take a listen to the recording and download the deck.  A valuable resource.

    Thanks team for this!

    ------------------------------
    Kim Peterson
    701-261-7307
    Kim@DynamicsConnections.com
    #KimPetersonGP
    ------------------------------



  • 14.  RE: COVID-19 - Business Continuity Preparedness - Working from Home Guide

    TOP CONTRIBUTOR
    Posted 2 days ago
    Can't wait to check it out.  I had a conflict yesterday, but looking forward to listening to the recording.

    ------------------------------
    Kathy Kim
    Director of Finance
    Donor Network of Arizona
    Phoenix AZ
    ------------------------------



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