When the remote work trend just started almost all of us were dreaming about working remotely, preferably somewhere by the ocean with a laptop in one hand and holding a cold beverage in another one. But the overnight shift that happened last spring could hardly resemble it.
Top 4 Collaboration Must-Haves for Remote Work
The urgent call for moving operations online cast a lot of challenges for businesses in terms of infrastructure changes and building effective remote teams, as well as for employees that had to adapt to new circumstances, and cope with productivity and communication issues.
So here are the top collaboration must-haves to make the remote work transition easier:
No company can deal without file sharing, as regardless of business specifics we share internal documents, report, contribute to a knowledge base, or exchange project-related media.
Using public hosting services like Google Drive can slow down the remote work, as there can be file loading delays, it’s not possible to share password-protected links, and it gets even more complicated if you need to grant or revoke access to several people at once, as there’s simply no such option as group management.
Services to use: Opting for a private cloud solution or renting an on-premise dedicated server that will be managed by your IT personnel is the right solution here, especially if you work with customers’ private data that falls under GDPR
Pro-tip: make sure to secure the remote access server connections with a VPN (preferably with an additional 2FA or OTP layer), so it’s not accessible for the external users, and protect sensitive files leveraging Active Directory permissions.
Meetings are one of the most effective tools to make fast decisions, clarify the details, and improve interpersonal communication. Video conferencing calls can help with everyday needs such as project sync-ups, scrum ceremonies, one-on-one meetings, and onboarding of new personnel.
Making sure that the quality of connection and channel capacity is enough to sustain the group calls is key to ensure productive collaboration. Therefore, before choosing the tool to use, make sure to check what are the limitations to avoid any unpleasant surprises in the middle of the meeting.
Services that can be used: GoToMeeting, Zoom, Google Meet.
Pro-tip: encourage your employees to turn on cameras and use video conferencing not only for official meetings. Some fun events like remote team buildings or virtual coffee breaks help to keep employees engaged.
Generating new ideas is an essential part of business development, thus in remote realia, we need to compensate for the absence of physical whiteboards and stickers keeping up the teamwork on a high level.
Choosing virtual solutions where anyone can add their ideas and thoughts at a time, vote for solutions, and group ideas into the streams definitely improve the collaboration and can help to define the best strategic paths that can contribute to business growth.
Tools that can be used: Trello, Mirro, inbuilt Google Meet Whiteboard
Task Tracking and Project Management
Project management tools and tasks trackers were quite popular when working from the office, but in remote work, they have a new meaning.
With their help, team members can collaborate on the projects, set the tasks, check the dependencies between teams and individual members, and prioritize a backlog. Its main advantage is assessing the project’s health at a glance.
Tools that can be used: Jira, Trello, Gantt, Basecamp. There is also a free task tracker small companies can utilize to coordinate with the team.
While remote work gives us more flexibility to choose the place of work and sometimes, it also calls for a higher level of discipline to focus on the work.
The collaboration must-haves outlined above will help you to maximize the effectiveness and productivity of your team.