Remote work is on the rise. An increasing number of workers and businesses are realizing the benefits of more flexible work schedules, no commutes, and the freedom to create your own workspace. The COVID-19 pandemic played a significant role in driving remote work’s popularity. Though many previously non-remote companies are back in the office now, countless more have decided to let it stay in some capacity. According to one study, 62% of survey respondents between the ages of 22 and 65 noted they work remotely at least some of the time.
Working from home has its growing pains, though. Not every organization or individual has gotten the swing of it yet. How can operations continue in a way that’s just as good, if not better than, working in the office? Such pains are why companies need to invest in the right remote work tools to streamline communication and optimize their internal organization. Such tools include Spot, Slack, Microsoft Teams, Asana, Trello, and more, so let’s dive into why remote work tools are worth it:
This first point is what every business wants to hear: it saves you money. If you’re a business owner, you’re likely familiar with the expenses and hassle of upkeeping a physical space. From utilities and rent to equipment, maintaining an office can get expensive, which is why many companies are choosing to forgo them entirely.
Instead of renting a space — which also forces employees to spend thousands of their own hard-earned dollars on transportation costs, like vehicle leases and fuel — why not pay a small fee per person to use a remote work tool like Microsoft Teams? It enables direct messages and project management features, so you and your employees won’t have to worry about communication blunders or losing track of progress.
“But communication just isn’t the same,” you worry. When in the office, all you need to do to update a coworker on a project is turn your head or pop over to their desk. How could digital workspaces possibly simulate the same environment? Details still get lost in the shuffle of daily operations, though, so various remote work tools integrate with each other besides offering direct messages. Linking your digital workspace, meeting platforms, project management solutions, email, Hubspot, and Google products creates an interconnected web of tools that streamlines communication and makes information more transparent.
In a similar vein, investing in digital tools facilitates collaboration amongst remote coworkers (including colleagues that work from the office while others stay at home). Countless professionals attest to the value of remote work, but if your company is going to make it happen, you need platforms that help people do their jobs well. Voice communication apps, for example, are essential for conversations that are too long to take place over DMs or email, and project management solutions like Asana and Trello help team members organize their tasks and contribute appropriately to shared assignments.
While on the topic of organization, remote work tools don’t just help people stay on top of their deadlines; they help everyone contribute notes, share feedback, keep track of revisions, post updates, loop in new team members, request advice, balance to-do list items, and so much more. Plus, they facilitate work between timezones. If you work with colleagues on another continent, then remote work tools can help you stay in touch more effectively than email (and internet-based communication is less expensive than typical phone calls!).
Everyone processes information differently. Some people are visual learners, auditory, kinesthetic, social, and more, depending on who you ask. Your learning style translates to work, too. You may enjoy graphs, charts, designs, and other images if you're a visual learner. If you prefer to absorb information through listening, you’ll benefit from virtual calls and real conversation. Selecting the right remote work tools helps you meet your team’s needs — there’s something available for most learning styles that will help them keep up to speed.
One of the caveats of remote work is that it’s challenging to build a positive company culture. It’s easy for workers to feel isolated and lonely without work friends. These possibilities are why remote work tools are essential for any kind of work-from-home scenario: they enable connection, creating the next best thing to in-person conversation. Ideas for remote team building include:
All remote work tools are designed to enhance productivity, but some make work feel less like… well, work. For instance, Spot is a digital communication platform that encourages walking meetings. Why sit at your desk cooped up all day when you can enjoy a walk through your neighborhood park while talking to your team members at the same time? Walking meetings support your mental and physical health because they get you outside to exercise, which is something we all need more of throughout the day.
As a growing number of organizations champion or begin to experiment with remote work, it’s also important to emphasize the value of remote work tools. They let team members talk to each other like old-fashioned phone calls, true — but apps like Spot do it in a way that encourages more connection and improves internal organization.
If you have questions about Spot, check out our blog and learn why walking meetings are changing the future of work.