Virtual offices and work-from-home jobs are becoming more and more popular, even for full-time employees.
Although working remotely is a welcome idea for many, pulling it off can be rather challenging.
Why? Unlike the office environment where your boss and colleagues are present to keep morale high, working from the comfort of your home requires a great deal of personal discipline to get tasks done.
But it gets easier if you have some of the best remote working tools at your disposal.
Tools To Manage Remote Work
What tools are most useful to remote employees and coworkers? If you must keep your focus, manage your resources well, and always deliver, we present the following for your consideration:
1. Time tracking
It may seem like you have so much time in your hands. But since you are not within the confines of an office, you might let the day slip by while there are still unfinished tasks on your plate.
However, with a good time tracking tool, such as Hubstaff or Clockify, you can figure out how exactly you spend your day and thus ensure you remain as productive as possible.
Such a tool will run in the background on your device, keeping track and giving you detailed reports on how much time you spend on different apps and websites.
2. Habit Trackers
Many of us struggle to stay focused on our goals and avoid distractions. A habit tracker can be a great way to keep yourself on track and reach your goals. Habit tracking involves setting a goal, breaking it down into smaller tasks, and tracking your progress as you complete each task. This technique helps you stay focused on the task at hand and reduces the chance that distractions will sidetrack you from achieving your goals.
Additionally, habit tracking also provides motivation for continued success by celebrating your accomplishments and identifying any areas where improvement is needed.
3. Distraction Busters
Instead of putting in maximum effort to meet those deadlines, do you always reach for your phone every few minutes to read new messages on your favorite social media platform? Or maybe you constantly check if your opponent has made a move on Words with Friends?
You might admit, working from home can get rather lonesome, since there are no coworkers to talk to now and then. It is therefore only natural that you’ll get bored and seek some form of distraction. However, if you don’t put a leash on it, it will surely do a number on your ability to get things done.
Luckily, you can keep your head in the game for a good number of hours with a distraction blocking tool (like LeechBlock, Mindful Browsing, or Freedom, for instance). This restricts your access to specified apps, social media platforms, and websites during the times you’ve chosen.
4. File sharing
In the office, there’s no trouble sending files across to your boss or colleagues. But when you have to do it remotely, it becomes an entirely different ballgame since large files cannot be transferred through email.
However, with an app like FileWhopper, securely sending huge files up to 1 terabyte is no issue at all.
5. Cloud Storage
It’s important to keep your work documents backed up in such a way that you can access them on any device, no matter where you are. There are many cloud storage solutions (Google Drive, Dropbox, etc.) at your disposal.
6. Video Conferencing
To share ideas, thrash out problems, catch up on the latest news, and keep the entire team functioning as a single organism, there’s always the need for scheduled meetings and face-to-face interaction. But how else can that be achieved when the people involved are in different parts of the world? Via video conferencing, of course!
There are many apps that allow multiple individuals to join in on a video chat (Skype, FaceTime, and WhatsApp are excellent examples here). And thanks to high-speed broadband, it would be just like being in the same room with your coworkers. You will hardly notice that there’s no physical presence.
7. Task management and collaboration
Team work is the heart and soul of every organization. Therefore, as an employer or manager, you have to carefully choose online collaboration tools for remote workers.
Such a tool (Slack or Active Collab, for example) will allow effective communication, file sharing, and mapping out assigned tasks. It will also help you set reminders, manage multiple projects, and keep track of the team’s to-do list.
8. Sound and music
Sitting in a grave-quiet room is not the best of ideas if you wish to keep your morale high during work hours. Although it would seem like the silence will help you stay focused, you may soon find it rather counter-productive. The hustle and bustle of an office, believe it or not, has a way of keeping the creative juices flowing and ensures you remain in work mode.
A quiet home office might seem ideal, but it has a way of sapping the spirit, especially in times when you lack motivation.
Luckily, there are apps designed by auditory neuroscientists, which you can use to solve the problem. These create ambient sounds that help you stay focused and motivated. You can even choose a mood and the app plays the best soundtrack that improves your concentration.
Remote work has its challenges, but with these top 7 tools, you can make it seamless and get the best out of every single day.