Many organizations are seeing the many benefits of working remotely – more flexibility with scheduling for staff, the ability for employees to work from anywhere in the world, and the new tools becoming available to improve such working conditions. For those that have adopted remote working, below are five tools to support your remote work.
This might seem obvious, but Google is an essential tool for any remote worker – G Suite features everything from a video conferencing function and chat capabilities to a wide selection of cloud-based productivity apps. Work created on Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Google Slides can all be stored in Google Drive and shared with remote colleagues, to either work on simultaneously or whenever one has time to continue the work.
These free cloud-based apps can be used to edit each other’s work as well. You can add comments and communicate easily in order to clarify ideas and direction, making it perfect for collaboration from afar. Google Drive can also be used to share large files like videos and images if need be. A basic G Suite account costs as little as $5 per month, but Google Drive, on the other hand, is free.
By using a communication app such as Slack, remote workers will be able to stay up-to-date with all the events and tasks going on in the office. The app allows users to ask the quick questions that would generally be asked in person. It’s a faster way of communicating and acts more like an instant messaging platform than email does.
Slack also allows users to share documents like images, videos, and PDFs. They can be instantly downloaded in real time so that other users, managers for example, can look over items and send feedback quickly. There is also a useful searchable history feature that lets users easily find past chats and shared information in less time. Small teams can try Slack for free.
Asana allows remote workers to stay focused and remain productive by offering deadline reminders, a to-do list, and an archiving function. The cloud-based tool also includes features such as conversation tracking, task management, and team assignments.
Another impressive feature to Asana is its project templates – there are standard workflows for departments including marketing, design, human resources, and IT. There’s a free trial version which can be taken advantage of, and the premium service will only cost you just over $11 a month.
A video conferencing app like Zoom, or Skype for that matter, gives remote workers, colleagues, and managers the chance to stay connected visually. Zoom is great for remote meetings where a number of people will be involved, offering the free flow of information and feedback. Zoom effectively allows companies to hold meetings virtually and still have everyone participate in real time.
Zoom features tools that allow users to have virtual business conferences and informative webinars, all the while sending messages and sharing files during these video calls. Plans start from around $15 per month to include up to 100 participants.
On Doodle, users can set their availability and others will be able to see the best times to set up meetings and when to schedule catch-ups. Users can then simply confirm they can attend and the meeting will be able to start. Remote workers involved in the proposed meeting will be sent automatic reminders before the scheduled meeting goes ahead.
Doodle is a scheduling app. Regardless of how many team members are involved and what timezone they’re in, the app allows users to come together at the times that suit them. A team package starts from $30 per month.
Are you a remote worker looking for essential tools to support your remote work? What are your must-have apps and platforms?
VP – Retail Market Leader