COVID19 and the subsequent lockdown restrictions started huge swathes of the global population working from home almost overnight. To ensure that productivity was not affected considerably, companies rushed to implement software that had the capability to help people continue to work together.
Here, we look at the importance of such remote collaboration tools and why they are so vital to a team’s success. Understanding both is vital to ensure that any team you work in or oversee, can still reach its targets even if the individuals within them are geographically separated.
What is remote collaboration?
Remote collaboration, in short, is the act of working with another person or several people on the same task or project. Those individuals may have different parts to play in that project, but through remote collaboration a successful result can be reached as the team continues to work together to meet one common goal.
Why is collaboration important?
Collaboration is important for any company. The increasing move towards home working - pandemic or otherwise - means it is important that productivity is not compromised when making the most of the other benefits working from home can provide. Working as a team is crucial for continued productivity.
Plus, effective team work not only allows individuals to take responsibility for their part of any project, it also allows them to specialise in that area. The result? A project is completed by several experts as opposed to one individual who has to be a ‘jack of all trades’. While having a wide knowledge base can be important, producing quality work in many different areas of a project is tough. Spreading the workload through collaboration is a way to get better results each and every time.
How to collaborate effectively with remote workers - remote collaboration tools
Here are our top picks for remote collaboration tools.
Slack is a comprehensive software solution for those seeking a remote collaboration tool for a team. It encompasses an instant messenger tool that stops the need for back and forth emails - while also promoting interaction in a less formal manner than an email often encourages. It also can integrate with many other popular software packages so that users can switch between Slack on other systems quickly and seamlessly. By making such processes painless, productivity is improved. It can be used as an app on smartphones as well as through many desktop applications too - most notably the big three: Windows, Mac OS and Linux.
Microsoft Teams is a popular app that many companies use to help streamline remote collaboration work. It endeavours to bring teams together through improving communication. It also has a vast amount of tools within it which allows users to have chats, video meetings as well as sharing files and tasks. It does so in a way that assigns accountability to team members for the tasks to which they are assigned. As a result, a great deal of transparency is reached across the board. Individuals thus know what is going on at all times in addition to knowing what is expected of them. Finally, the software runs on a Cloud storage basis. It means that all members have access to all information they need from a company’s files.
Trello can be a highly effective tool for companies to utilise to boost the productivity of its teams. The idea behind it is to assign tasks to individuals to help avoid any confusion in who should be doing what. It also helps all team members see where they are in any overall project - making tracking what is happening with a current project quick and easy. One of Trello’s biggest advantages is how intuitive it is. Many users can start using it with little to no training on it - yet its benefits are still enjoyed. For example, first time users will find it easy to attach documents to tasks, talk with other team members and update the status of a task without too much difficulty, if any.
Contractbook’s software enables easy collaboration by allowing users to share templates, review work and track document changes as well as negotiate deals through the software’s platform. Contracts and documents can be assigned to users in different hierarchies to help maintain control and assign responsibility to relevant team members or clients. It allows users to delegate work easily whilst providing a tasks management dashboard that gives a clear overview for all involved.
Remote collaboration - key takeaways
Remote collaboration is not only increasingly more possible, it is increasingly more the norm in our modern age. Being able to do it with your wider team is key for the overall productivity and success of your company. With the introduction of more and more online collaboration tools, getting results, despite being in separate locations, is achievable. These tools are bridging the gap between being in the same office with team members and being online with the same team members.
Some companies may prefer to use a whole suite of tools whilst others may lean towards just using one piece of software. The key to all of them is that the need to be intuitive to use. If they are not, they not only will impede collaboration, they will encourage other ways of working that may not be truly effective. Remote collaboration tools need to open up communication, make life easy for all team members and ensure that everyone knows what is going on at all times.