Over the past few years, especially following the pandemic, the idea of remote working has been at the centre of discussions for many businesses across the world. There are lots of businesses that are still moving their focus to a remote workforce. More and more companies are starting to see the value of having a remote workforce, not just for its flexibility but also for the financial benefits it can bring. Of course, for employees, this is generally about having more flexibility and freedom, which in turn boosts morale, but for business owners, the benefits lie elsewhere. The ability to tap into a wider pool of talent, save more money by not paying for rent on office spaces, and also generally benefit from a more productive workforce. However, with remote work comes its own set of challenges, especially when it comes to communication and collaboration among team members, and one of the best solutions to tackling these obstacles is for companies to invest in the right tools. In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the most useful types of tech tools for businesses with a remote workforce.

Remote Access Software

When it comes to working with tech, it’s not entirely uncommon for individuals to run into errors and problems, preventing them from working. Having a talented IT team at hand is essential, especially for larger businesses. These tech problems present a fairly large hurdle for businesses that offer remote working options, however. When employees aren’t on-site alongside an IT support department, getting assistance when these errors appear is a bit more complicated. That is unless you make use of tools like remote access software. There are many different remote access software options available today, such as Citrix. However, it’s worth browsing the market to find one that suits your business. Apps like TSplus are a Citrix alternative for remote desktop support, allowing your IT team to connect to individual employees’ devices when requested and fix any issues they may be having.

Video Conferencing Software

As we mentioned above, one of the biggest challenges of remote working is maintaining effective communication and collaboration among your entire team. This is where video conferencing software comes into play. Apps like Zoom, Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, and the many alternative conferencing apps on the market all allow your team members to communicate and collaborate in real time, no matter where they are working. These tools also offer features such as screen sharing, recording, and breakout rooms, which can help to make your meetings much more productive. This sort of software is practically a necessity today, whether your entire team is working remotely, if you have a hybrid system or even if everyone is still working in the office. There will be occasions that, even when your team doesn’t work remotely, someone will need to be involved in a meeting but aren’t currently on-site. You might also have moments where you wish to hold a meeting with a business partner that operates out of another country entirely. But when it comes to running a business where employees work remotely, this conferencing software will be in use daily to keep everyone feeling connected.

Project Management Software

Another important tool for remote working businesses is project management software. These tools, such as Microsoft Planner, Trello, and Asana, allow teams to track the progress of projects and collaborate on tasks, even when they are working remotely. The types of features these offers include calendars, task lists, and timelines, which can help your team to keep their projects on track. When you and your team work together with the help of a project management app, you’ll find that each step of your project becomes a lot easier to manage. Everyone on the team will be able to identify what other members of the team are working on, as well as what needs to be done and what has already been finalised. Failing to make use of a project management app can result in you and your team getting confused about who is doing which tasks and can also lead to people forgetting important tasks as well as doing some that have already been done, wasting time and resources.

Cloud Storage

Remote working businesses also need to invest in cloud storage solutions so they can ensure each team member has access to their important files and documents, no matter where they are located. Cloud storage services such as Google Drive, Dropbox, and OneDrive allow you and your team to store and share files online, allowing others to access them remotely, as well as allowing individuals to work across multiple devices and still retain that access. Cloud storage is especially useful if you choose to implement some kind of hybrid working solution, too. Additionally, cloud storage solutions also provide automatic backups and version control to ensure that your team’s work is safe and secure at all times. This will help to minimise any potential data loss and keep your team’s work streamlined and organised.

Time Tracking Software

This can be useful for remote working businesses to ensure that all team members are working as efficiently as possible. Tools like this allow team members to track the time they spend on different tasks. This information can be used to help to identify areas where productivity can be improved. In a similar style, these tools can help identify areas of inefficiency, too. They can track the time spent on tasks, set goals and track the progress your team is making in specific tasks. They can also provide detailed reports and analytics on overall team performance. Of course, they can also be used as a means of accountability to ensure all team members are meeting their responsibilities. But remember, it may not be wise to scrutinise the working patterns of your employees, as this can seriously harm morale, so use this responsibly.

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Virtual Private Networks

Otherwise known as a VPN, these provide you and your team with secure connections that allow people to access their company’s network from anywhere, making it a perfect tool for remote working businesses. This can be particularly useful for your team members that may need to access sensitive data or applications that are not available on the public internet. Connecting to your company’s VPN will then allow them to have full access to that data or a specific application from wherever they’re working. VPNs can also protect your company’s data from potential cyber-attacks and keep your employees’ online activity private and secure.

Cybersecurity Software

Speaking of cyber-attacks, it’s also a very good idea for all businesses to have some form of cybersecurity system in place. Today, cyber-attacks are becoming increasingly prevalent, and remote working businesses especially need to invest in cybersecurity software to protect their networks and data from cyber threats. As well as investing in cybersecurity apps, you should also train your employees in cybersecurity awareness to reduce the risk of them making costly mistakes when working from home. Phishing attempts are one of the more common issues that people face today, and while most can identify a suspicious email fairly quickly, those that aren’t well-versed in these things may fall for it and click a link without thinking. This can open your entire network up to a malicious entity, resulting in data theft and the like, which can be catastrophic for your business.