Organizations can use Teramind’s all-inclusive remote work monitoring software to track time and engagement of work-from-home employees, consultants, freelancers, independent contractors and even third-party vendors. You can manage projects, reduce expenses and ensure overall productivity of a dispersed team as if they were in your office. Additionally, Teramind’s automated Policy & Rules Engine ensures you can enforce security best practices across your remote endpoints and servers. Your organization will be defended from theft, sabotage, and other threats both intentional and accidental.
With Teramind’s remote work monitoring you can:
Monitor virtually all remote user activity and behavior;
Manage schedule, track time, projects, tasks, and expenses;
Measure and optimize productivity;
Enforce security policy and rules to protect remote computers.
In this article, we will discuss Teramind’s remote work monitoring features and how to use them.
Measure Remote Worker Productivity
Teramind’s productivity tools let you track and analyze the productivity & performance of your workforce including your remote workers. With the BI REPORTS > Productivity report, you can view aggregated summaries or drill down for specifics on everything from projects to tasks, activity level, idle time, and more. You can also conduct trend analysis such as remote vs. on-site work performance, activity level vs. productivity, etc.
You can use the CONFIGURE > Productivity Profiles to configure what websites and apps are productive/unproductive and then track employee use of those sites/apps.
You can even create policies and rules from the BEHAVIOR > Policies screen to limit unproductive behavior and provide real-time feedback. For example, set a time limit on social media usage or warn users with a pop-up when they have been idle for too long.
Remotely Deploy and Manage the Teramind Agent Installation
Teramind makes it easy to remotely deploy the agent on multiple computers at once. You can then manage the users and computers such as enable/disable monitoring, update the agent, or uninstall it from the central dashboard. Any configurations, policies, and rules you implement can be sent to the agent in real-time. If you are using the Cloud version of Teramind, the agents on the remote computer can be configured to update automatically - saving you a lot of time and hassle.
There are various ways you can remotely deploy the agent:
Using the built-in Remote Agent Installation dashboard (which also supports Active Directory LDAP), PSEXEC, and WMI modes;
GROUP Policy Object;
Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM/SCOM) Tool.
For more information and step-by-step instructions for each of these deployment methods, check out the links under the Useful Resources section below.
Use the Revealed Agent for Privacy and Transparency
The Revealed Agent lets you monitor employees non-obtrusively and transparently without interfering with their privacy. This is perfect for tracking remote employees, contractors, and freelancers. You can use this agent to allow remote users to manage their own tasks and work-time. Work-from-home employees can then decide which ones of their computer activities will be part of the work hours vs. personal time.
With the Revealed Agent, you can build a self-managed remote team, enable a culture of trust and offer them a flexible work environment.
Use the Hidden Agent with Two Accounts
If you do not want to use the Revealed Agent, you can create two user accounts on the user’s computer. Then set up one to be monitored by the Hidden/Stealth Agent and leave the other account for the user’s personal use. Ask the user to log in to the monitored account whenever they are working. This way, you get the benefits of the Hidden/Stealth Agent (e.g. continuous monitoring, automated task assignment, etc.) and still comply with any privacy requirements.
Track Remote Employee Time and Tasks without Installing the Agent
If you just want to track the login, task, attendance, and worktime of a remote user without monitoring their computer activities, you have two options:
Time Tracking Using the Web Clock-In Feature
You can access it through: EMPLOYEES > select an employee > Edit Profile > ACCOUNT INFO tab:
Note that, you have to enable both the User can login to Teramind Dashboard and User can clock in and out using Web interface options.
Install the Agent on a Terminal Server / Session Host / VDI
A Terminal Server is a server where multiple users can log in and work simultaneously. For example, a Windows Server configured with Remote Desktop Services is a Terminal Server. Teramind Agent can be installed on such a server to monitor all users on it keeping out of your internal network and repositories. You can apply security policies, access control, etc. for all users on the server. And, in case of an incident take control of the server with the Remote Control feature.
Teramind is also a complete solution for XenApp or XenDesktop session recording. As a drop-in replacement for SmartAuditor, Teramind provides visual screen recording for all Citrix sessions, as well as indexing all user activity metadata. Organizations can use Teramind this way to monitor users and jump gateways.
Installing Teramind on a Server/Session Host is similar to installing it on a regular computer. If you need help, please contact [email protected].
Use Remote Desktop Control for Security and Training
Teramind’s Session Player allows you to view a remote user’s desktop live (if the user is online) or view their previous recorded sessions. With the Live Mode, the Session Player turns into a fully functional remote desktop client. You can view a real-time stream of the user’s desktop, take remote control of it, freeze input or lock out the user.
There are three special buttons available on the Live Mode (near the top-right corner of the Session Player). Using which you can control the remote user’s desktop:
Invoking the Task Manager (Windows)
Use the Warning button to send the CTRL+ALT+DEL command to the user’s computer. This will bring up the Windows Task Manager screen, where you can access options to change the account password, switch a user, etc.
Freezing User Input
Use the Padlock button to freeze/unfreeze the user’s input. When the input is frozen the user will not be able to use their keyboard or mouse.
Use the Remote-Control button to take full control of the user's computer. This works like a regular RDC (Remote Desktop Connection) session.
Enable Offline Monitoring
Teramind can monitor activity and enforce admin policies and rules even when the user is offline. However, note that the Revealed Agent has some limitations and restrictions on how the offline monitoring and rule enforcements take place:
Offline Policy & Rules Enforcement
Supported. However, the user has to be on an active session when the network connection is disrupted.
*Note the Mac Agent some limitations. Please see this article for more information.
By default, Teramind has a recording buffer of 24 hours (that is also the maximum limit of the buffer). You can change this setting or enable/disable offline recording entirely from the Monitoring Settings > OFFLINE RECORDING screen:
Monitor Network Activity and Create Network Rules
All remote users connected to your business network can be monitored by the Teramind Agent. Using the MONITORING > Network Monitoring report, you will be able to see the remote user’s: Identity, Computer/Domain, Time, Exact IPs and Ports, Protocol, etc.
You can also create Network-based rules to generate alerts when suspicious remote user activity is detected. A few examples include:
Repeated connection attempts;
Initiation of specific root processes, or console commands (e.g. telnet, netsh, route);
Connections to suspicious IPs or ports;
Login sessions at abnormal hours;
Access to/from a list of IPs or IP range, etc.
Here are some op-eds, guest articles and Teramind blog posts that cover remote work related topics: