Seven must-have tools remote workers shouldn’t miss out on
Do you work remotely? Looking for clever short cuts to make life easier? Here are seven tools you do’t want to miss out on.
Remote work has shifted from being a neat option to a standard way of life for many of us. Gone are the days when we could pop into our coworker’s office for a quick question or to catch up on the latest company news. Our living rooms have become our offices, and our pets, our colleagues.
But working from home doesn’t mean you’re left to fend for yourself. Having a good set of tools at your disposal can make your work-from-home experience more effective and efficient. Here are seven must-have tools you should consider to boost your productivity, smooth out your workflows, and collaborate securely, regardless of location.
1) Project management software
Project management software is the backbone of remote work. It offers a well-structured environment for seamless coordination and execution of tasks. These platforms go beyond simple task creation and assignment, offering a holistic view of every project. Its key features include:
- Visually engaging task boards;
- Precise task assignment protocols;
- Definitive deadline settings;
- Real-time progress tracking;
- Comprehensive reporting mechanisms.
All of these features combined ensure that every team member stays informed and involved. By employing project management tools, remote professionals can execute projects efficiently, despite being miles or continents away from each other.
2) Collaboration tools
Working remotely doesn’t mean working alone. Collaboration tools help bring the team together by providing shared spaces for brainstorming, problem-solving, and creating. Key features include shared boards, annotation tools, and real-time editing. These tools can enhance team productivity by facilitating a sense of shared purpose and community.
Aside from productivity, remote teams also must consider the security implications of their data-sharing practices. Encrypted cloud-based solutions are ideal as they ensure your files are safe, backed up, and can be accessed anywhere. They also allow multiple people to work on the same document simultaneously, fostering collaboration while maintaining document integrity and security.
3) Communication platforms
Clear and effective communication is essential for a productive work environment. A robust communication platform should offer both synchronous and asynchronous modes.
The main goal of a communication platform is to simulate an office environment where colleagues can easily discuss plans and projects.
Such a platform promotes team interaction, enhances collaboration, and ensures everyone is on the same page. Some platforms also include features like screen sharing and virtual whiteboards, further improving brainstorming and decision-making processes.
4) Time-tracking and productivity apps
Staying disciplined and productive when working remotely can sometimes be a challenge. In the comfort of their homes, remote workers face many distractions. Time-tracking applications help address this by providing insights into how work hours are being utilized. They allow you to monitor the time spent on each task, promoting accountability and productivity. Moreover, these tools often come with analytics features, providing valuable data to optimize work patterns.
Productivity apps are also beneficial for staying focused and maximizing your workday. They come with features like to-do lists, reminders, and habit trackers, providing a simple yet effective way of managing day-to-day tasks.
5) Virtual private network (VPN)
Another essential security tool for remote workers is a VPN. This tool allows remote workers to securely access sensitive company data from various locations. It establishes an encrypted tunnel for your internet connection, transforming your digital footprint into a guarded entity.
Knowing your connection is encrypted, you can focus on your work without worrying about potential breaches or cyber threats. Using a VPN when doing remote tasks gives peace of mind to both workers and clients, making it a valuable asset in a remote worker’s toolbox.
6) Wellness apps
Working remotely can sometimes blur the lines between work and personal life. So, a healthy work-life balance must be a top priority for remote workers. Wellness apps promote healthy habits tailored to suit the remote work lifestyle. For instance, they ensure you remember to take those much-needed breaks between meetings and deadlines.
They also encourage mindfulness exercises, helping to instill a sense of calm in the often chaotic world of remote work. It’s no wonder many remote organizations offer complimentary subscriptions to popular wellness apps.
7) Automation tools
Automation tools are game-changers in managing repetitive tasks. From automated email responses to scheduling social media posts, these tools take over mundane tasks, allowing you to focus on more critical aspects of your work.
By introducing automation tools into your workflow, you also significantly reduce the risk of human error. When performed manually, tasks such as data entry or scheduling are prone to oversights or mistakes, particularly when workload pressure mounts.
Equip yourself with the right tools
To navigate the world of remote work successfully, it is essential to equip yourself with the right tools. The tools listed above cover various aspects of remote work. When used effectively, they can enhance productivity, facilitate communication, ensure security, and help maintain work-life balance.
As the landscape of remote work continues to evolve, so will the toolbox. However, these seven tools offer a great start for your efficient and productive remote work journey.