Richard Hicks, President
A sound telecommuting policy is imperative for any organization to thrive in today's highly competitive business landscape. It helps businesses tap into the benefits of a mobile workforce that is not restricted to office locations, ensuring better productivity and flexibility. As such, they can communicate with remote field workers, work collaboratively with them, and stay updated on the progress of projects without any complication. Unfortunately, even well-crafted telecommuting strategies often fail due to the lack of safety and proper management of the field-based devices. It is also cumbersome for in-house IT teams to have complete visibility and control required for maintaining the security of devices whenever they go beyond the office premises.
Set against this challenging background, for the last five years, Southern California-based Richard M. Hicks Consulting has been providing premier consulting services to help organizations mobilize their workforce and improve security and compliance for field-based devices. “As an independent consultant, I specialize in enterprise mobility and security infrastructure with a sharp focus on organizations that invest in on-premises and cloud-based Microsoft technology,” says Richard Hicks, president of the company.
Hicks is a deep subject matter expert in Microsoft enterprise mobility solutions, such as DirectAccess and Always On VPN. He is the author of “Implementing DirectAccess with Windows Server 2016” (Apress Media, ISBN 978-1-4842-2058-0) and is currently working on a book for Windows 10 Always On VPN. Since the introduction of DirectAccess, he has been helping organizations deploy and maintain a secure network. Over the last few years, Microsoft has begun to pivot toward Always On VPN as a replacement of DirectAccess. To that end, Richard M. Hicks Consulting also enables enterprises to migrate from DirectAccess to Always On VPN through continuous support. The company also offers a three-day hands-on training course to plan, design, and implement the cutting-edge Always On VPN infrastructure, across the globe.
As an independent consultant, I specialize in enterprise mobility and security infrastructure with a sharp focus on organizations that invest in on-premises and cloud-based Microsoft technology
Additionally, Hicks has developed a dedicated curriculum and comprehensive online video training courses for DirectAccess as well. Today, the company has branched out beyond the Microsoft ecosystem, leveraging solutions from other vendors, such as Cisco, Palo Alto Networks, NetMotion Software, CheckPoint, and many others.
While engaging with clients, Richard M. Hicks Consulting begins with conducting a discovery workshop to identify specific challenges that a client is facing. “We assess clients' existing mobility solutions and understand their limitations and shortcomings,” Hicks mentions. Following this, the company determines how the end solution should look like, at least in theory. Up next, going through a rigorous selection process, it zeroes in on the right vendor and technology solution that best fit the unique needs of a client. “Finally, we implement and configure the solution that we have selected. In the evolution and testing phase, we pilot it to ensure that it functions properly and meets all the specific client requirements. We also provide post-installation support,” Hicks comments.
Providing such a comprehensive service, Richard M. Hicks Consulting caters to a multitude of Fortune 500 and Fortune 1000 clients and is consistently honing its capabilities. In an instance, Hicks assisted a government agency in overcoming the limitations of their existing DirectAccess deployment and establish secure connectivity for field workers in remote locations. "We shortlisted solutions that better met their needs, evaluated a specific one among them, and provided them with connectivity in the remote offices in an efficient and reliable manner," he recalls.
Striding ahead, the company has plans to partner with different software and hardware providers to bring cutting-edge solutions focused on Software-Defined Perimeter and Zero-Trust to address the dynamic needs of the mobility landscape. “We take a holistic approach to facilitating enterprise mobility. It's not about simply establishing remote connectivity; it’s about understanding all the needs and requirements of clients and implementing highly secure solutions, utilizing certificate-based authentication, multifactor authentication, PKI, and more,” concludes Hicks.