In a world wrapped up in one of the worst public health and economic crises of the modern era, working from home is now a necessity, even for companies that never offered their staff that type of arrangement before.
Working from home can be challenging, though, especially when your team is used to an office setting. Much as people enjoy working without having to spend hours in heavy traffic, there’s no substitute for working face-to-face with the people on your team.
Fortunately, there are now tools that may not replace physically working together completely but will help get the job done despite the distance.
From messaging platforms to worksheet templates, here are some tools that your staff can use to continue being productive and efficient while working from home.
Communication platforms have been around long before COVID-19, but if there’s one that zoomed to the top during the pandemic, it would have to be, well, Zoom.
Zoom became the go-to platform at the height of the pandemic, primarily because of its messaging and video conferencing features that are beyond impressive. Its capabilities for screen-sharing and integration with other tools and software are topnotch.
What won people over, however, is Zoom’s simplicity and relatively intuitive interface. That, and the fact that it offers users with free, 40-minute conference calls with up to 100 attendees. Get a Zoom Pro license, and your team will have access to unlimited meetings, record meetings to the cloud, and stream to social, among other things.
2. Google Suite
Google has already given us, the Internet-using public, so much over the years. One of the more recent gifts we got from the search engine giant is the Google Suite.
It has Google Drive, which makes sharing, editing, and storing files so much easier for you and your staff. Creating, reviewing, and sharing documents and spreadsheets also become more convenient with Google Docs and Google Sheets. Google Calendar, meanwhile, can come in handy when you’re coordinating meetings, setting up appointments, and monitoring deadlines.
3. Excel Templates
Your staff will find aggregating data, organizing budgets, and creating tables and charts so much easier and quicker when they do it on downloadable and ready-to-use Excel templates, which are proving to be valuable business planning and project management tracking tools in their own right.
Typically available online for free, Excel templates often boast of user-defined formulas and preset functions designed to aid people in crunching numbers and analyzing data, among other things.
In an office setting, people can simply request in-house IT specialists to check whatever is wrong with their hardware or software, and they’ll be Johnnys-on-the-spot at your workstation a few minutes later and fixing the problem.
In the world of remote work, however, the closest you can come to having a tech person addressing your IT problems is to have a remote desktop tool like TeamViewer installed on your computer.
With TeamViewer, the IT specialist in your team can troubleshoot all your IT problems from a distance. TeamViewer also allows users to transfer files, share presentations, or conduct training courses.
One of the major concerns of remote work is the possibility of workers slacking off because they’re not in the office, where someone can keep an eye on them.
Hubstaff, however, should take all your worries about productivity away.
It allows you to track your staff’s hours and takes random screenshots that let you see if your workers are actually doing work and not playing games or watching movies on their computers during their supposed work hours.
Designating and monitoring tasks and sub-tasks, creating checklists, and setting deadlines also become more manageable when you have Hubstaff.
Of course, the above tools aren’t the only ones of their kind. There’s a wealth of communications platforms and project management tools out there, so, check them out and see for yourself what’s best for your business.