An Interview with Markus

Since the middle of March, a majority of us are working from home. Not only is this a big adjustment for each individual, but also requires support on the technical level from our IT team. Markus, our IT team leader, gives us a glimpse at how this can be achieved in the following interview.

Markus, a large part of our crew is working from home at the moment. What measures need to be taken on our part to make our employees’ extensive use of remote working possible?
At the time our employees had switched to working remotely, we were already quite well situated in terms of bandwidth. We did, however, have to make changes to the configuration of our VPN connections to prevent strain on its performance. We also had to implement a further collaborative tool to ensure communication. Not only that, we improved our monitoring – a suitable management system now allows for a detailed overview on the workload of the network.

You just mentioned the workload. How does the amount of VPN usage look now in comparison to previous use?
The usage rate has increased about sevenfold.

Were there any preparations for such extreme situations on your side?
As a technology company, we were basically prepared for the possibility of a larger strain occurring on our network – that it would become such an extreme situation with remote working is of course something we didn’t expect. What we always do, however, is allow for a constantly growing data volume, both in buying our network devices and the data cable bandwidths.

What is it like working from home for you personally? Do you have a few tips for successful remote working?
I’ve noticed after a while that the conscious transition to the workday is missing because there’s no trip to work anymore. Walking from the house to the car, the drive to the office and the short footpath from the parking lot to the building seemed meaningless to me before. Now I go walking for ten minutes around the block before I sit down at my desk. That helps me start my shift with intention and at least attune myself a little bit to the workday.

 

With that, we would like to say a big THANK YOU to Markus and the whole IT team for their commitment!

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Saskia Hoffmann