How do you ensure your remote team stays happy and productive when they’re on the other side of the world? We use a few tools. Here are our favorite not-quite-secret weapons.
Image by Chris Lott
Building an effective offshore remote staffing strategy is definitely easier said than done, so we recommend equipping some good collaboration tools. Here at Bolton Remote we’ve tried a bunch of them, and we’ve seen some tools that we liked because they worked for us pretty well. Here are our favorites.
- Asana. Most of us remember what it’s like to plan and manage projects as a team in your own physical workspace. Having to print and bring in physical files and notes was a drag, but it was easy getting stuff done with all hands on deck.Asana allows you to plan and manage projects online, so you don’t need to get off your seat or carry piles of paperwork. Your team shares a virtual workspace where you can store your projects, and each project contains your tasks. In every project, you can drop files, comments, and notes, and update your tasks collaborators stay in the loop on its status. With file sharing and updates this easy, you’ll need email less and that could save plenty of time.
- Hootsuite. All from one dashboard, Hootsuite lets you manage your presence on sites like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+. It's great for cultivating your brand, finding leads, reaching out to your audience, and augmenting your existing marketing strategy.Hootsuite’s built for teams as well. From the dashboard you can manage team access, see scheduled posts, approve or reject posts, and create tasks and assignments. You could use the built-in messaging feature to discuss; no need for email and scheduled meetings.
- Sqwiggle. Conversations are important for collaboration. But when you're away from the rest of your team, smooth communication by normal means can be tough. Chat messages and email don't convey your tone well, and calls take time to schedule.You could work around this with Sqwiggle. As soon as you fire up the app, you'll enter a virtual workroom with your team in there. If you see their face (and they aren't on Busy Mode), you can poke them for an instant video chat. There's also a chat stream, if text chatting is more your style. Great for sharing stuff like files and codes, too.All of this comes with no scheduling, no waiting for people to accept your calls, and nothing stopping you from telling your co-worker how nice their shirt is.
- Speek. Like conferencing? We do, too, with Speek. Your dedicated conference line (a simple link, not a PIN you'll likely forget) lets you start a conference call without scheduling or downloading anything. Your team could simply join your conference like they were entering a meeting room, and they could start talking just as quickly. You get to see who comes in, who's talking, and who leaves, so you'll know exactly who's in the conference, and what they said.What's even cooler is that you've got added features like screen sharing, file sharing, and call recording. There's a chat feature as well for quick notes.And no elevator music. That already makes Speek cool in our book.
We try new tools near constantly, and we’re always open to finding stuff that could help manage remote teams better. Got any personal favorites? Let us know.
Latest posts by Bolton Remote (see all)
- 4 Steps to Solidify Company Culture this 2017 - January 25, 2017
- 4 Ways to Add Culture Fit to Your Hiring Method - December 28, 2016
- How to Test for 4 Qualities Every Great Programmer Must Have - May 24, 2016