Remote working is no longer an option for some. Due to the pandemic, it has become mandatory, and several companies have also decided to introduce a hybrid or flexible model where employees can choose to work from home or not. Others have moved to a 100% remote model.
Whether you are working remotely for a while or permanently, there are a lot of tools out there that can help you make it productive and easier to collaborate.
Let’s find out what these are and how you can use them.
#1. Zoom for video conferencing
Zoom has grown tremendously during the pandemic. It has become a verb like Google because of its immense popularity not just among companies but also consumers.
It has a freemium model, so you can scale as your requirements grow, and getting started is easy. You do not even need to download an app to join a Zoom meeting.
You can also download virtual backgrounds for zoom free of cost to imitate a professional setting or make it a casual background for after-hours hangouts.
#2. Trello for project management
Trello, an Atlassian product, is the go-to tool for project management. It allows you to create cards and manage projects on different boards. The look is gamified to imitate the old card games on desktops.
You can also easily collaborate with different employees easily by assigning tasks or cards and deadlines.
#3. Slack for internal communication
If you have been emailing team members, you know that it gets difficult to keep track of all the communication threads. Slack allows you to replace email and create channels to keep your conversations organized.
#4. Calendly to schedule calls
If you conduct business online, you can use Calendly to let people schedule a meeting or a call on your calendar to avoid the usual back and forth where you ask someone to suggest some time slots. This is especially helpful if you are in different time zones.
#5. Google Drive to store files and collaboration
Working online also means you need to store files on the cloud to give access to your team members so that you can collaborate easily. Google Drive allows you to store 15 GB worth of free data, so you do not need to upgrade until you cross that limit.
For professional accounts, the limit is 30 GB.
There are other cloud storage services that you can use as well, depending on the industry and role you are in.
#6. Loom for screen recording
Loom allows you to record your screen and create product tutorials, explain a feature internally or do a knowledge transfer easily.
Other screen recording software like Wistia also helps you create videos easily without having to worry about video production costs.
#7. Miro for visualization
Since you don’t have access to a whiteboard, team projects can be a little difficult to visualize or draw funnels. There are plenty of infographic tools out there that you can use, but Miro is great for collaboration and works well as a whiteboard replacement.
#8. NordVPN for security
With distributed teams, security is a major concern. NordVPN or other VPN services are likely helpful to employees to prevent malicious websites and apps from tracking them. You may also want to implement firewall settings in the browser to avoid other devices from being able to connect to yours.
#9. Time Doctor for freelance workers
If you want to manage your freelance resources better, you can try Time Doctor. This helps to keep track of hours spent on work and also verify the invoice if it is based on an hourly model. For full-time employees, you can choose to ditch the timesheet and measure output in terms of performance instead of hours spent at work.
#10. Doodle for group meetings
Need to get a quick consensus on team projects? You can use Doodle to create polls and get your team’s opinion on anything, from finding a time that works for everyone to making larger decisions.
Kind of tools you need and the options in each category
Project Management tools
Remote meeting platforms
- Google Meets
- Microsoft Teams
- Google Drive
- Adobe Creative Cloud
Internal documentation and communication
- Github Wiki
- Troop Messenger
- Time Doctor
- iDone This
Internal decision making
Keep your systems simple. The more tools you use, the harder it will get to manage everything. You can use one or two tools and use integrations and workflows to automate the rest or connect two apps so that you don’t have to have multiple apps open at the same time. For instance, Slack allows you to integrate Google Calendar on Slack and create meetings directly from Slack. Similarly, there are other platforms that allow third-party integrations to make your life easier.