This article was written by Eric Gordon.]
Remote teams play a major role in the modern economy because they can improve business efficiency while reducing operating expenses. As you adopt more remote workers in your company, you will need to increase your dependency on technology for collaboration.
Navigating the ocean of collaboration apps can challenge even the most tech-savvy business owners and managers. Give yourself a head start by learning about the following seven collaboration teams for efficient remote teams.
Whiteboard experiences help team members understand concepts and goals visually. In the traditional office space, gathering around the whiteboard helps teams define problems communicate messages and plan strategies. Now that so many employees work remotely, RealTime Board can ply a vital role in your organization.
Developers created RealTime Board to be an easy-to-use virtual replacement for the in-office whiteboard. Creatives of all kinds along with marketing professionals and project leaders use the application to keep everyone working on the right tasks and objectives. A clever sticky note format helps everyone on the team choose outstanding tasks, see work in progress and assess accomplishments.
Teams can try RealTime Board for free for as many as three users. Team packages start at $40 per month for annual billing if you have more than fifty team members, you will have to contact the developers for enterprise pricing.
Social media dominates the online world, so why not make it work for you and your remote teams? When you choose Slack for your remote teams, you get the synergy that accompanies social media along with productivity and communication tools that everyone feels comfortable using.
Slack uses hashtags to keep conversations organized and on-topic in dedicated channels. Meanwhile, direct messaging and file sharing tools enable team members to quickly interact with each other to ask questions or transfer information. Slack video and voice calling enables everyone in your company to talk without the need for expensive telephone systems and other equipment.
All the tools in Slack contribute to healthy and functional teams and can scale from small organizations to the enterprise. Service plans begin with a free package that lets you try Slack’s basic features for as long as you want. When you choose Slack for your teams, prices begin at $6.67 monthly per user. Buy “Plus” package with enhanced uptime, compliance tools and other features starting at a monthly $12.50 per-user fee.
3. Office 365
Microsoft’s ubiquitous productivity applications already dominate the business world. Now that the firm’s popular office suite resides in the cloud, it offers new opportunities for collaboration that no business should overlook.
Office 365 empowers everyone on your team to communicate and collaborate regardless of their location. File sharing and real-time document editing only begin to highlight the capabilities of these applications.
You can start with the basic business plan at a cost of $8.25 per user per month and migrate to the premium and enterprise feature levels for $12.50. Office 365 applications work on computers, tablets, and smartphones, giving team members to work according to their preferences without sacrificing productivity.
You and your teams can visualize optimize workflows and thereby improve efficiency and profitability when you choose LeanKit. The application works in many settings, including IT, software development and project management. An accessible graphic portrayal of work gives everyone access to real-time status updates.
LeanKit also clearly identifies responsibilities within teams and projects. Such accountability alleviates confusion and simplifies managerial tasks. The application works well on mobile platforms and provides a centralized conduit for communications that makes collaboration easy.
By using LeanKit, an application designed to facilitate the lean transformation, companies can quickly optimize their operations, eliminate waste and accelerate deliverables. Pricing for the service begins with a $19 monthly per user fee. An advanced plan with additional features starts at $32 for each user every month. The premium package that supports private clouds costs $49 per user per month.
Give your teams a chance to track their work, collaborate and get fantastic results by choosing Asana for your project management. When you register for the service, you can use its basic features for free. The $9.99 monthly fee per user gives you all the premium features most firms need to track workflows, assign tasks and manage responsibilities.
Asana’s mobile-friendly interface ensures that mobile, remote, hybrid and traditional team members can perform tasks, provide status updates, share files and interact with others, regardless of their location. Such accessibility simplifies project tracking and stimulates innovation.
Avoid mistaking the simplicity of Asana for a lack of features. Under the hood, you will find robust administrative controls as well as tools for managing private projects, monitoring dependencies and reporting. Additionally, the application supports guest users without exposing confidential information.
Try all the above tools for efficient remote teams and explore all their features to find the ones that best meet your needs. Remember, as you work, keep an open mind and learn about other tools that can make your teams work smarter and faster.
Eric Gordon is an independent business development and marketing specialist for SMEs. He loves sharing his insights and experience to assist business owners in growing their revenues. You can find Eric on Twitter @ericdavidgordon