Working remotely does not come naturally to everyone. If you’re having trouble with the challenges of telecommuting, know that you’re not alone! Just relax, take a deep breath, and get comfortable with the idea that everything you need to do can be done remotely. You’ll be able to stay connected with your team members and your customers, wherever they are. With a flexible approach and the right tools, it’s very possible for you to overcome any remote work obstacle you will encounter.
In this article we will describe some of the best remote work tools. We’ll give you a couple of options for apps and program that you can chose from to boost your personal productivity and help you manage all your projects. Let’s get started with the first category: tools for personal productivity!
Tools For Personal Productivity
To be as productive working from home as you would be at the office, you will need the basics such as calendar apps, email and some other tools that will help you keep track of all the important projects and tasks you’re currently working on. Many affordable options exist, as described below.
1- G Suite
There are certain features of an office productivity suite that we’ve all come to expect, and many of us have paid high licensing fees to get them. A powerful word processor, a capable spreadsheet tool, and a flexible presentation platform, these are the kinds of applications that many of us use every day and would be lost without. Sophisticated online versions of all those tools, plus Gmail, Google Calendar and other apps are combined to create Google’s G Suite, a popular collection of cloud computing, productivity and collaboration apps.
Fast.com allows you to test your internet speed easily. This free, one-page connection analyzer won’t bog you down with unneeded information.
Your download time and your upload time are reported in a matter of seconds. Because not all online activities require a fast connection, but many work-related tasks do. For example, acceptable performance when video conferencing takes 1-4 Mbps download speed and 1 MBPS upload speed. Consider how you’ll be using your connection when working from home and upgrade your internet service if you need to.
Staying on top of your daily tasks can become more challenging when working remotely, and many telecommuters rely on Todoist to create order out of chaos. This popular task management app lets you define, organize, and prioritize all your activities.
Todoist makes it easy to share task information with collaborators; team members can add task and project comments, while automated notifications keep you aware of progress.
Trello is a web-based list-making app that’s become extremely popular as a personal productivity tool. It’s a unique system that lets you organize and prioritize your tasks and collaborate more easily. There’s built-in workflow automation that lets you define rule- or date-based triggers so projects run smoothly and on schedule. The free version should have everything you need, unless you commonly deal with attachments larger than 10MB, in which case, two premium offerings are available.
Tools for Team Communication
If your team is not used to working remotely, you may need to get everyone on the same communications platform. Even if the plan is to find a more feature-rich team communication tool later, there’s no reason you can’t hit the ground running with an option like Google Hangouts. You can still go with the limited functionality for free. Here are some other available options when you’re selecting a tool to enhance team communication.
One of the most popular tools for team communication is Slack. Using this tool, teams interact in channels that can be defined based on role, project, client, or any other organizational distinction. It offers boundless flexibility, enables collaboration through resource sharing, and integrates with your other tools. The free version provides access to Slack’s basic features, and there are three levels of advanced offerings you can choose from.
Another major player among team communications platforms is Microsoft’s Skype. Seamlessly integrating chat, voice, and video functionality, this tool allows teams to hold virtual meetings with up to 50 people. You can record calls, use live captions and subtitles to enhance presentations, and more.
One thing’s a given when you work remotely—you’ll send and receive more messages on all your communications channels, especially email. A tool called Spark can automatically prioritize your email, moving the most important messages to the top.
Tools for Collaboration
When it comes to collaborations, your team’s best collaboration may happen when the right group meets in a conference room. What if we told you that kind of meeting can also happen when you’re all working remotely?
Here are some tools to help with that.
Zoom is a very popular option you can get started with, Zoom is completely free. It lets you have one-on-one video chats, or you can get your whole team together and makes decisions together. It offers HD video and clear audio, even if some users have a slow connection. You can even use Zoom as a unified platform for meetings, phone, webinars, and chat, and this tool runs on users’ desktop clients, browsers, and mobile devices.
An important part of team collaboration is reporting. iDoneThis gives leaders and contributors access to a channel that facilitates daily check-ins and the sharing of detailed progress reports. You can find out if a team member has finished their task or if they hit a barrier of some kind. The tool also lets you deal with detailed reports and zoom out to get a better view of your team’s progress.
Cisco’s WebEx is a very mature offering on the team collaboration market. This great tool will provide highly refined features for video conferencing. Your team can take advantage of great interactive whiteboards, messaging, and file sharing. This sophisticated platform allows lots of businesses to conduct a very professional webinars, hold online training sessions, and even provide real-time, video technical support.
Tools for Remote Access to Computers
If remote access to another computer, your office desktop, for example, is the key to your work-at-home strategy, you’ll need an application designed to make that happen. Here are a couple of apps that can handle the job.
AnyDesk works on every OS you can think of and allows you to connect to a computer remotely in a secure way. You’ll be able to interact with the desktop like you’re on-site, and the performance is great even over a slow connection. There’s a free version for personal use and reasonably priced tiers for business use.
12- Chrome Remote Desktop
Chrome Remote Desktop is another option if you need to access a computer remotely. It allows you to use a computer or mobile device to access files and applications on another computer, perhaps one that’s far away from your home, in your business’s server room, for example.
Luckily, the software market is really loaded with all sortes of powerful and flexible tools to address any need while working from home.
There are project management apps and softwares, tools that can help your team stay on track, and very sharp access solutions for every type of data or computer resource.
We truly hope this breakdown of remote tool categories and app suggestions will help you work more effectively and maximize productivity while working remotely!