Published on March 24, 2020
Reading Time: 6 mins

There’s always panic during emergencies and this time, it’s not only about the Coronavirus, but also about work. A lot of companies and employees have gone remote. Many others will do same in the coming weeks. During this time, it’s difficult to plan your work, whether as a company or an employee – so many guides online, so many things to take care of, and more.

Which is why this checklist is here to help. If you’re a company planning to go remote or your firm says you should work from home now as an employee, this guide will help you get started. You don’t just get the tips of how to get started, you also get to know the tools that are ideal for each purpose as you work from home.

Tools for team chat/communication

These are tools that allow your remote team to communicate asynchronously and keep them working together. They allow your team to chat with one another and create chat rooms or channels to sync communication between and among departments or those working on similar things. These are the tools you’ll need to enable seamless team communication.

1. Microsoft Teams

A great tool for teams to chat, create chat rooms and share work-related and other stuff. It’s available on Windows, Android, iOS, Mac, and Web.

2. Slack

You’ve probably heard of the team chat app Slack, and tried. If you haven’t and planning to go remote, then it’s a great application to keep your team in sync. It’s available on Windows, iOS, Mac, Android, Linux, and on the Web.

3. Yammer

While this comes as part of the Microsoft 360 bundle, Yammer is a social network application designed for use by companies internally, more like Facebook but for your organization’s internal employees. It’s a great tool to keep the “social” even during the work from home period.

4. Troopmessenger

Business communication platform for group chats, file sharing, and desktop sharing among others. Available on Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, and Linux.

5. Flock

A team chat app for your remote company – available on mobile and desktop.

6. Chanty

Chanty is an AI-powered tool that is available on mobile and desktop.

Other great remote team chat tools

  • Ryver
  • Flowdock
  • Twist
  • Mattermost
  • ChatWork
  • Facebook Workplace
  • Telegram

Toos for virtual meetings - video and audio calls

Chat isn’t going to get everything done in your team, and that’s when video conferencing comes in. whenever you need to get on a video call with your team, either one person or the entire team, here are the tools to get you going.

1. Skype

For those looking for something to handle a small team video conference, Skype has you covered. Its free version is available on mobile, desktop or on the web for teams to do video calling, screen sharing, and video call recording among others.

2. Zoom

You may have heard of Zoom when you made the decision to go remote. It’s the most popular video conferencing tool for video calling, call recording, screen sharing, and can host up to 100 participants. Its free version can get you started as soon as possible.

3. Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams is a great tool for conference calls, allowing your team to record, share screens, and do more. It allows live streaming of up to 10,000 viewers and video meetings of up to 250 participants. Microsoft is currently offering its premium features for free for teams going remote as a result of the Corona Virus.

4. Google Hangouts Meet

Google Hangouts Meet is another great tool for video conferencing of up to 250 participants, livestreaming of up to 100,000 viewers, and more. If you’re using Google Suite services for your team, then Google is offering free access to companies going remote until July 1st, 2020.

Other great virtual meeting tools for your remote team.

  • UberConference
  • Appear.In
  • GoToMeeting
  • BlueJeans Meetings
  • Cisco WebEx
  • TrueConf Online
  • FreeConference
  • Slack Video Calls
  • Join.Me

Tools for syncing and document collaboration

Collaboration for work in a remote company is an important part of getting things done. Here are the tools you and your remote or work from home team can use for document collaboration and synching.

1. Google Drive

Google Drive provides 15GB of free space for file sharing and management and you can use this to sync files among your team, especially on written content.

2. OneDrive

There’s up to 5GB of free space on OneDrive for users and you can upgrade to their paid plan. If you’re using a Microsoft account, your OneDrive is synced with this for seamless collaboration, chat, and video.

3. DropBox

Another great platform for storing and sharing files for your work at home team. There’s a free space of up to 2GB, but you can always upgrade if you think your remote company needs more space.

Project Management tools

While your team works from home, you will need to a tool to track their work – who is working on what, which work is completed, which ones are near completion, and which ones are urgent and what are the deadlines. Without a great project management tool, you can’t keep all these in check, especially if you have a large team that’s moving remote in times of the Coronavirus. Here are the tools to use to sync work.

1. Asana

Asana offers an easy to use user interface for teams to manage projects and has a lot of integrations to help you extend your project management capabilities.

2. Jira

Jira is a project management tool popular among developers. it’s used to organize, monitor, and execute on software projects.

3. Trello

Trello is a great project management tool that allow teams to execute projects using drag and drop “Boards”. Assign work, monitor employee progress or stage on particular tasks, and sync what the entire team is working on.

4. Wrike

A great tool for managing projects with excellent insights about your projects, including performance charts and global reports.

5. Basecamp

Basecamp is a great project management tool that allow teams to track their progress. It also has message boards for announcements and updates, allows teams to track to-do lists, and Campfire for casual chats.

Other great project management tools for your remote team.

  • ClickUp
  • ProofHub
  • Monday
  • Airtable
  • Microsoft Project
  • Zoho Projects
  • Atlassian Confluence

General tips for working remotely

  • Communicate more often with your employees
  • Make your remote work expectations known to the team
  • Listen to employees and their opinions on what's best
  • Personalize their experience as an organization
  • Use the right tools for the job
Saibu Baba

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