The last year has seen all businesses facing a major shift as employees have been forced to work from home.
Government agencies have been no exception to this, but they have specific issues relating to handling sensitive data. Last month the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced a plan to expand remote work options and other agencies are expected to follow suit.
We spoke to Devin Redmond co-founder and CEO Theta Lake — specialist in security and compliance for collaboration platforms — to discuss how the public sector can adapt and ensure its collaboration technology and remote work practices comply with federal and state laws.
BN: Why has the public sector faced particular challenges in shifting to remote working?
DR: The move to collaboration first work environments has created a tremendous shift for most organizations, but also a tremendous opportunity. Whether you’re in financial services, whether you’re in government, the opportunity to allow employees to work from anywhere gives them a lot of flexibility. It also gives organizations a lot of flexibility in terms of how they think about their real estate, how they think about the talent pool that they have access to, how they can reduce their expenses from a travel perspective and from a commuting perspective.
Government which has traditionally been a proverbial bricks and mortar environment where a lot of the security procedures, a lot of the safety of the employees and the folks working in that environment is premised on them being in secure facilities. And now when you say, “Hey, I’m going to move more and more of the employees to work remotely,” the need for them to be able to collaborate and share information becomes paramount to their ability to be successful. That ultimately is a pretty big shift in how they think about security compliance, how they think about exchanging information and who has access to what, that really transcends a lot of the tools that they’ve previously had in place.