Managing remote workers can be challenging. From trying to schedule team meetings, to file sharing and collaborating on projects online, it can be difficult to ensure that all remote workers are able to remain productive. Luckily, there are a range of tools available to help remote teams become more effective and engaged in their work. Here are the top 10 tools to improve remote work productivity.
Tools For Project Management
Slack is a fantastic and very popular professional messaging tool which allows teams to create a digital space in which they are able to collaborate in real time. It enables teams to use channels to send each other instant messages and share ideas, wherever they’re based.
By setting up separate channels for different teams or topics, you can ensure that all the information is stored in its own relevant place. Another great feature of the tool is that it’s really simple to search for specific information, meaning you can easily retrieve important pieces of communication.
One of the added benefits of Slack is that it can also be integrated with other apps. You also have the option to set reminders, including making these reminders specific to individual channels or making a note of who needs to be reminded of what. As Slack is fully functional for iOS and Android, it makes managing remote teams simple and effective.
ProofHub offers a great space in which teams can collaborate online. As well as setting custom roles, it also allows you to create tasks with designated start and end dates. ProofHub’s online proofing feature is particularly popular as it helps reduce the amount of time you have to spend reviewing and approving tasks.
As ProofHub is an all-in-one remote project management software tool, it also has a dedicated space for discussions and facilitates file sharing. It can also be integrated with other existing apps, including Google Calendar, Google Drive, OneDrive, iCal, Dropbox and QuickBooks. The chat to share feedback feature means that all your communication stays located in one central place.
Cloud-Storage Service Tools
- Google Drive
Google Drive is not only simple to use, but it also enables you to create an organized file structure which can be easily accessed by all members of your team. If you share a high volume of files, including documents, spreadsheets and slide presentations, then Google Drive is the cloud storage service for you.
As well as keeping all the files centrally stored, you also have the option of choosing which team members have access to each item and even decide on what access level each team member should have. Alternatively, individual files can also be shared directly via a link. This ensures that information can be properly and secured stored. Additionally, Google Drive can also be synced across different devices, meaning that your team can access and update files anywhere, at any time.
Dropbox is the is the ideal tool if you have to share big files, including PowerPoint, sketch or photoshop, to share with other members of the team. Dropbox allows remote workers to easily sync and share documents, as well as collaborate on them. Furthermore, as it has API (Application Programming Interface), it’s a cloud storage system that is not only useful, but also ideally suited to remote teams.
As with other cloud storage services, with Xtensio you can easily organize files into different categories, or alternatively, assign them to specific teams and projects. One of the most popular features of Xtensio is the fact that all changes made to any document are synced in real time. This means that it’s ideal for teams who are looking to collaborate remotely, particularly on content creation. In addition, the service also uses SSL encryption and backups, meaning that you can be assured that your content can be accessed at any time, but only by the right people.
Xtensio is also a particularly useful tool if you’re aiming to create content which ensures continuity of your brand. For example, it allows you to create templates that all team members can use and access, as well as creating internal how-to guides and presentations for external use.
Tools For Video Conferencing
If you regularly take calls from a non-soundproofed room, have to create voice messages for clients, deliver presentations online, create podcasts or are a remote call center worker, then Krisp is the app for you. Its premise is very simple – it’s a noise cancelling app, but it’s extremely powerful and effective. Krisp works by supporting microphones, headsets and speakers. Additionally, it can also be used with any communication app, including Slack, Zoom and Skype, amongst others.
Not only is Krisp extremely easy and quick to install, but it can make a huge different to sound quality, which can often be overlooked. By removing background noise, both you and all other participants are able to confidently make and receive calls from anywhere. Moreover, the clear audio will make for a much smoother, and therefore quicker, meeting and interaction with others. It will help to make the meeting more enjoyable and allow all participants to be more productive as a result.
- Microsoft Teams
Microsoft Teams has all the basic features you would expect from a video call app, making it an ideal choice for remote teams. As well as screen and file sharing, MS Teams also has optional virtual backgrounds and app integration. In addition to individual audio or video calls, you can also host group meetings and chat with your co-workers.
The latest feature to be rolled out is the ‘Together mode’, which has made MS Teams stand out. This feature was designed for those individuals who like to be together in a shared space with others when working. As such, the ‘Together mode’ allows teams to work “together” is a digital workspace, despite being physically remote. Using the latest industry technology, MS Teams focuses on security and compliance, ensuring that all meetings are safeguarded.
One of the most popular video conferencing apps currently available is Zoom. Best known for its high-quality video, Zoom is a fantastic choice if you want to host group calls, particularly if you work with bigger teams. It’s very simple to use and is affordable for companies of all sizes. Additionally, you can also set up invitation-only meetings, which will reduce the likelihood of being interrupted by unexpected calls.
Zoom is great for collaboration, as well as team meetings. You have the option to screen share and chat. You can also create ‘Zoom Rooms’, which have been specifically created for team collaboration. It’s also a fantastic choice if you’re looking to host a webinar.
One of the most striking features of Zoom is the recording option. On any call, with a full-length video, you have the option to record it. This means that you can then save the video and share it with others at a later date. This is an ideal feature for staff training sessions, if you’re planning to deliver how-to sessions to workers or clients, or as a part of a tour which can be stored and used again at a later date.
Organization is essential for an effective and productive workforce, but especially so when working remotely. If you’re working on multiple projects or having multiple meetings in one day, it’s essential that you can keep track of all your notes. If you’re looking for a simple to use and effective note-taking app, then look no further than Evernote.
Evernote is the ideal note-taking app for remote teams. Not only can you take notes, but Evernote can also be used as a PDA and is a fantastic choice for to-do lists. You can also add photos or images to your notes, as well as make audio recordings. Even better, the app allows you to store all your notes securely in one place, whilst automatically syncing across all your devices, meaning you can access it at anytime, anywhere.
Scheduling team meetings can be challenging, especially if your team is spread across multiple time zones. Yet with 10to8, a scheduling software for remote teams, organizing meetings with other team members and clients has never been easier. 10to8’s two-way calendar is able to sync with most existing calendar apps, ensuring that double-bookings don’t occur.
One of the best features of the tool is the native Zoom integration. As such, you’re able to jump on a video call directly from the calendar. Additionally, 10to8 also has automated reminders, meaning that you can rest assured you won’t miss a meeting.
With so many remote work tools on offer, you too can ensure that your remote workers stay on track. These tools not only allow for more seamless communication, but crucially, provide effective digital spaces for collaboration. As a result, your workers will be able to stay more productive, organized and happy.
Lauren Groff is an experienced productivity writer at State Of Writing and Do My Assignment, where she regularly writes about ways to improve productivity in the workplace, as well as sharing tips on how to maximize employee satisfaction. Lauren is also an editor at Assignment Writer. When not writing, Lauren enjoys spending time reading and attending business conferences.