The future isn’t certain, but we know one thing: remote work is here to stay. It’s pretty easy to see why. Working remotely keeps workers happy. Most people like not having a commute and it’s much easier for new parents to balance working part-time and providing care for their kids as you can find plenty of online jobs today.
However, if you’re a manager, it can be difficult to transition to a working remote model. A lot of managing a project relies on soft skills that can be difficult to replicate online. Still, with today’s technology, it’s actually pretty easy to coordinate a work team from home.
But there are so many tools out there, getting started can be overwhelming. So, we’ve broken down different types of productivity software you’ll need for a well-rounded tech stack. Whatever you’re facing with your new work team, we’ve got a solution.
Project Management Software
There are many project management tools that let you get everyone on the same page– literally. This type of software creates one portal where everyone can work together.
Different software uses different designs for managing workflow. Some function as a sort of “virtual roadmap,” while others mimic an online whiteboard where people can work together in real-time.
The big thing you’ll want to think about when choosing project management software is integrations. You might want to select other apps first and then look at which project management tools work best with them.
Who needs this?
- Developer teams
- Marketing teams
- Virtual assistants
- Social media managers
CRM systems are one of the main buzzwords of online businesses. Customer relations management helps you contact, sell, and learn from your customers.
With a good CRM system, you don’t have to stay online to keep following your customers. A good CRM will automatically collect data and create reports about customer interaction. This way, you can improve your services and maximize your ROI on marketing campaigns.
If your online business uses a marketing team, you need to invest in good CRM software. It’s an industry-standard tool that helps you tailor the customer experience to your market demographic.
Who needs this?
- Sales teams
- Online stores
- Database managers
Video Conference Enhancers
Video conferencing has had a modern renaissance. What was once seen as a pale imitation of a real-life meeting has expanded greatly. Video conferences are great when you need to have a team working together in real time.
One advantage of video conferences is that not everyone has to be in the room to get the information discussed in the meeting. You can use a screen recorder to record and distribute virtual meetings.
Good screen recording software comes with video editing tools. This way you capture meetings, edit the video and distribute the important parts to other teams.
Who needs this?
- Online coaches
- Online teachers
- Web developers
- Movavi Screen Recorder
Everyone needs an effective chat tool. Emails get jumbled easily, and you can lose important attachments on long threads. You need to be able to chat in real-time. Chat software streamlines text communication so you can make decisions efficiently.
The main thing about chat tools is their integrations. You want a chat tool that can work with your project management system and across all your team’s devices. If your chat is on Android, you might have trouble getting in touch with someone who uses an iPad for remote work.
Furthermore, look out for the features of your prospective chat app. Can you easily read the conversation layout? That affects how well you can work in teams. You also will want to think about the file-sharing capacity of your chat app. Many of them struggle to share large files.
Who needs this?
- Any remote work team
- Microsoft Teams
Tips for Choosing Good Remote Work Tools
There is no universal tool for your remote work job. You’ll want to identify what you need and choose each app accordingly. Using too many tools can make your remote workplace clunky and impair communication. Now that we’ve broken down what these tools do, here are some helpful questions to help you pick wisely.
What Does My Remote Work Team Do?
Before you decide on tools, you must first determine what type of job you’re doing. For example, if you’re a copywriter, you might not need any sort of CRM system. But if you sell items or services through an online shop, you’ll definitely need one.
When it comes to new work from home tools, less tends to be more. Pick up new things as they are needed. It’s easy to grab too many things before you learn how each one functions. Opt for fewer tools that are easy to use and work with each other.
What’s My Monthly Budget for These Tools?
It’s all about that bottom line. Your profit is determined by your revenue vs. the cost of your overhead. Plenty of companies save on overhead by not having a physical office, but you still need a monthly budget to cover your subscriptions.
If you’re working with a small team, you’re in luck. A lot of software companies offer a free version for teams of up to five people. That said, you might want to take scalability into consideration if you intend to expand your team. You don’t want to hinder growth opportunities by spending less at the start. Switching over to a new program can cause issues in workflow.
Bear in mind that some of the more expensive programs are also the most comprehensive. For example, Salesforce is on the higher end of CRM software. Still, many independent online retailers prefer it because it’s a comprehensive cloud-based system that manages all aspects of the customer-business relationship.
Which Tools Do I Like Most and What Integrates With Them?
Finally, you’ll want to take personal preferences into account. Sometimes you prefer one layout over another, or like the features of one certain app.
Whichever tool you will be using most, make sure you really like it. Then you choose your other supporting apps based on that. If your apps do not share information easily, it’s easy to have communication breakdowns.
There is a strong push from top talents for working remote. Overall, people who work from home are 20% happier. So if you value work-life balance, remote work is the way to go.
Still, managing a work team from home can be a daunting task. Still, there are plenty of programs designed to help people collaborate even if they are worlds apart.
When you evaluate your team’s needs, you can effectively select software stack that helps you stay in touch. Remote work is the way of the future, and we’ve already got the tools to make it happen.