Keep prying ears and hacking threats out of your business dealings with these tips on effective ways to streamline and secure your business communications.
Your business is, well, your business. And to be frank, it’s no one else’s unless you release a public statement. After all, the last thing you want is to have internal documents leaked, like in the infamous case of Sony.
That’s why it’s necessary for you to find ways to keep your business communications not only secure but also streamlined, to ensure that your entire team is on the same page.
That may sound like a tough challenge, but it can be easily achieved through the following ways.
Send Out a Company-Wide Newsletter
Monthly company newsletters remain one of the most effective and efficient ways to sum up news and updates involving your company. Company newsletters can contain anything from goals to progress on a project, new hire welcomes, or press coverage the business has received.
Newsletters are a great way to develop a more positive corporate culture. When employees feel like they’re part of a team because they’ve been kept in the loop, they take pride in the company they work for. As such, they’ll be more cautious when handling sensitive information that’s residing on the server.
Stick to One Tool and Dashboard
If you want to build a stronger working relationship with your employees, then communicating with them in real-time can achieve that goal. That’s because it increases productivity and provides a forum for your employees to ask questions and exchange ideas. For secure, easy-to-use chat tools, check out Yammer, Hipchat, and Slack. These tools allow you to chat one-on-one, converse in a group, and even invite clients to conversations to join in on the discussion anytime, anywhere.
Slack is highly recommended and works well for most organizations. However, if you’re in the medical industry, your best bet is to use Yammer because it’s HIPAA compliant.
Besides your main communication tool, you may also want to search for a project management tool that keeps all communication involving a specific project in one convenient location.
Tools like Asana and Trello allow you to manage workflows more smoothly and efficiently. And both applications are easy to set up and use.
Asana is a better option if you’re list-oriented. That’s because it lets you create to-do lists, manage projects using the calendar function, assign tasks to specific people, and keep track of projects.
Trello is a visual dashboard that displays projects as boards. So if you’re a visual individual, it’s a better choice. With each project board, you can create cards with which you can add comments, upload files, assign tasks, and keep tabs on progress.
All traffic on Trello runs over SSL/TLS/HTTPS, while Asana uses Amazon’s relational database service (RDS) to manage all user data.
Leverage a Singular Storage Solution
Dropbox, Box, and Google Drive are just three examples of online storage options. These make organizing and storing your company’s files as easy as possible. They also encourage collaboration because they can be easily shared among your team.
These services also take security very seriously. Each one has taken extensive security measures and combined that with a high degree of permission-based user control in order to keep your sensitive data safe. They offer encryption for files and password protection for links so that only those who are allowed can view, share, and edit files.
Conduct Conference Calls From One Secure Phone Number
Regardless of your size, every business needs a reliable conference call tool to ensure that everyone is on the same page. Thanks to technology, that’s not a problem. There are VoIP services like Ooma and online conference services like GoToMeeting.
Most of these tools and services allow you to schedule conferences with multiple offices, bring in remote employees, or talk to clients or vendors. You can even record these meetings to ensure you don’t forget any important details. Best of all? You can keep your existing number or download the apps so you can join the conference call no matter where you are.
Of course, you need to protect all your business communications. While email is probably your company’s primary method of communication, it can also be easily targeted by nefarious individuals looking to steal company information.
To avoid this, require the use of end-to-end encryption tools for all communications that are hosted on your company servers. Server-side encryption software will automatically encrypt an email before it’s sent.
This is especially important if you work in health care because protecting patient information is paramount. Make sure you follow all the requirements for HIPAA compliance. HIPAA mandates the methods, as well as the levels of encryption, that are accepted for protecting patient data.
Use One Password to Rule Them All
Finally, you and your employees probably have multiple passwords to use, like one for your email, another for Slack, and yet another for Trello. To prevent your team from using the same password, or a password that is easy to crack, embrace single sign-on or password managers.
This lets your users log in with one ID and password whenever they need access to a connected system — instead of using different usernames or passwords.