Managing a remote workforce is one
of the top challenges facing startups today. The
internet has made it easier than ever for businesses to nix the traditional
office and utilize a staff that works remotely. Employees love it because they
get to work from home, and businesses love it because they don’t have to pay
rent on a large office space.
But having a remote staff comes
with its challenges, mostly that communication can be a lot more difficult.
Thankfully, there are a few great tech tools out there that you can use to make
sure there’s great communication between your staff and that everyone’s being
productive. Here are 5 tools that will help your remote workforce stay
1- Messaging Apps
A good messaging app is the single
most important tool to help your staff stay connected. A messaging app enables
your staff to:
communicate with one another in a non-intrusive way
questions about tasks and projects
up-to-date on project or company changes
While email is a great mode of
communication, a messaging app is a better way for employees to engage in quick
conversations and get fast responses from their colleagues. Slack is one of the
most popular messaging
apps because it allows you to create messaging channels in
accordance with projects and departments.
Here’s another great thing about
messaging apps: they enable employees to be social! One of the downsides about
working from home is that you won’t have the same kind of social connections
you’d have in an office. Messaging apps allow your employees to build
connections with each other.
2- Scheduling Apps
For managers, one of the biggest
fears about working from home is that your employees won’t be as productive when
they’re not working in the office. If you’re going to utilize a remote
workforce, you’re going to have to let go of micro-managing. Instead, you
should assign your employees with a weekly or monthly list of tasks. Emphasize
that each tasks needs to be completed by the assigned due date, and trust them
to get their work done.
Use an easy-to-use scheduling app to assign tasks and
projects to employees. Hive is a great scheduling tool because you’re able to
assign tasks and due dates to your employees, and your employees can choose
which organizational interface to use.
The nice thing about having a
remote staff is that you can hire the best employees all around the globe. But
you’ll find scheduling and communication can be difficult if you have employees
who are working in different time zones. In that scenario, you’d need to have
tech tools that assist you with time zone management.
Every Time Zone, in particular,
gives you a helpful world clock that you can reference whenever you need it,
but it also lets you set up meetings with staff who are located in different
parts of the country or world. If you need to conference with someone who’s in
a different time zone, the software will help you pick the meeting time that’s
best for both of you. This is also a great tool for when you need to set up
meetings with employees who work at different hours of the day than you.
Remote conferencing is one of the
best technology solutions for remote workforce
management. Email and messaging apps are efficient, but communication is always
faster when you can speak directly to your employees. Digital conferencing is
preferable to phone calls because your remote employees are going to be on the
Voice conferencing gets the job
done most of the time, but use a video conferencing app like Skype if you need
to share your computer display with your staff.
5- Cloud Storage
going to have a remote workforce, all your employees need to be able to quickly
access digital documents, spreadsheets, and presentations. You should definitely
have a work-oriented cloud storage program so you can share project
files with all of your staff.
A remote workforce should make
your business productive and cost-efficient, so use these 5 tools to make sure
your employees remain on task.
About Author: Rachel Johns
I am business grad with majors in Marketing and New Media, and I work as an independent marketing strategist. Writing is my passion as it gives me an opportunity to express myself. I love traveling and exploring the world, but most importantly, how the world is evolving.