So you managed to get a job working from home, you haven’t worn office appropriate attire in months, haven’t had to deal with lines of morning caffeine addicts or sit stopped in traffic fuming about the guy in front of you that cut you off for the umpteenth time. You have it pretty good, but I’d like to say, my be-robed friend, that it can get even better.
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Here are some tools that will make your life as a remote worker even easier.
Of course, the biggest concern when telecommuting, working from home or remote working is communicating with your team and of course your supervisor. Sure, you have a cell phone that is constantly buzzing, but a more immediate, on your desktop type of solution will help you avoid interruption of your work flow and save you from the dreaded shoulder-neck phone hold. Skype is probably the most obvious choice as it not only offers text messaging, file transfer and voicemail, it also allows video calls. Oh and it’s free! There are other services with more robust functions, but they either have to be purchased or have a paid subscription. If you don’t like Microsoft’s communication solution also look into Google’s free communication program, Google Hangouts which works for anyone with a Google+ account (sneaky, sneaky Google) and allows free video conferences with up to nine people.
2. Task Management
So now that you’ve got the communication thing on lock-down you need to know when your deadlines are and what is expected of you and the people under your leadership. Try Trello on for a try. This nifty little piece of task managing, team organizing software allows users to set up To-Do Lists, Ideas lists, Projects in Progress and Completed Tasks. A very cool feature which further helps with managing your team is a convenient Activity Thread which shows you which member is working or worked on what. It works on a “cards” format and allows each card to have due dates, checklists, attachments, labels and more importantly members. It’s a robust team coordinating program that will help you keep everyone on point.
So along with the other two apps, you will also probably need a file sharing solution and yet again Google flies in like a superhero to the rescue with Google Docs. It’s free, it’s powerful and it’s cross-compatible with Microsoft Office and other business document programs. If you need a bit more space or your job demands the transfer of bigger files, Dropbox is also a free and powerful tool- it allows integration across multiple platforms and devices. Multiple members can work on the same document that is automatically updated for everyone that is part of the shared folder. Both Google Docs and Dropbox are free to use and have video, audio and file sharing capabilities that work from a data cloud.
Are there any other things you think would help a remote worker? Let us know in the comments section below.