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A COVID-19 Q&A with Entisys360’s Mike Strohl and Orange County Business Journal

With an increasing number of businesses adopting work-from-home strategies to comply with shelter-in-place mandates, Entisys360, an award-winning IT solution provider with a regional office in Irvine, has been on the front lines, helping its customers maintain business continuity in the face of massive business disruption. We sat down with Mike Strohl, CEO of Entisys360, to learn more about how the spread of coronavirus is impacting local businesses.

Q: What are the top challenges facing businesses as they move to work-from-home?
A: The biggest challenge is whether or not they can maintain business operations and generate revenue in a work-from-home environment. Not all companies that can conduct business from workfrom-home environments have the infrastructure, or in some cases the culture, required to achieve this. Situational work-from-home scenarios are one thing, but when the masses must work-from-home, that brings a new set of challenges.

Q: What are the steps that businesses are following to solve these challenges and adapt to the “new normal” that is stemming from this pandemic?
A: The first phase is getting employees out of the office and connected to the resources they will need to do their jobs. Phase two will focus on driving productivity and optimizing security. Once shelter-in-place orders start to lift, we will enter phase three—getting people back into the office. How that will look is still to be determined. Businesses can leverage what they’ve learned to build systems and processes that enable them to more quickly and effectively move people in and out of the office as this situation continues to evolve.

Q: What are some of the technologies that businesses should have in place during these uncertain times?
A: Some of the technologies that are helping businesses during this time include Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), desktop and application virtualization, cloud-based virtual private networks (VPNs) for secure connectivity, and collaboration tools like video conferencing. Businesses should be leveraging powerful security tools (i.e. firewalls) and policies to protect their infrastructure, applications and data.

Q: What are some of things businesses have done right in migrating to work-from-home models? What could they do better?
A: Businesses that have been able to get out of their own way – getting people back to work quickly at home are having the greatest success. No one could have ever imagined the extent of the disruption we have faced as a result of this pandemic. I give kudos to our vendor partners—including Cisco, Citrix and Zscaler, who have responded rapidly with free or heavily discounted offers to help with this transition. In the future, businesses that have technologies like VDI and collaboration tools in place will be more prepared to face disruptions like this head-on.

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