Our work lives are now inextricably linked to the online world, regardless of where we are based. Because of this, all workers, whether fully remote, hybrid or in-office, need to streamline their workflows to sync up with clients and teams. Managers, too, need efficient and effective ways to keep a handle on what’s happening.
In response, a landslide of new platforms and apps that coordinate our collaboration have been developed, to help us work smarter, not harder. We have rounded up the best remote working communication tools of 2022.
Clearword - Meeting management
Meetings, most of us can agree, are the bane of our working lives. However, since work has moved online, getting the most out of meetings has become much more manageable with new software products designed to streamline them. Clearword’s meeting video library is one such product. Clearword joins your call, records the meeting and automatically creates a summary. The meeting is then organised and timestamped, making it accessible and searchable. It also records your meeting notes and comments, capturing all details of the call so you can access them later. A handy feature of Clearword is its calendar coordinator, which allows you to schedule meetings to eliminate the email ping pong we all despise.
Timeular - Time management
Timeular is a time tracking app that allows users to be more productive by increasing their efficiency and identifying their optimum routine and workflow. Timeular allows you to allocate time to different tasks, whether they are meetings, brainstorming sessions or hours of deep focus. It also creates exportable data which can then be converted into timesheets, accounting fully for your billable time and giving you minute-by-minute insights into where your time actually goes. “Using Timeular has helped me better understand how I spend my work day and improve how I allocate time,” says Jocelyn, a Shopify worker.
Spotlight - Productivity
Spotlight is a tool that blocks out distractions and accounts for your time in a more effective way. An antidote to the “always-on” culture, the app creates a personalised “bubble” (groups of blocked apps, websites or notifications that you cannot access, or can’t access you) and diverts these potential distractions away from your field of attention, allowing you to concentrate more fully on the task at hand. The “distractions” from your “bubble” are then compiled into a “flow”, or a feed of digital moments that you can review at a glance. In the background, the app is working away at gaining valuable insights about your activity, so it can provide intelligent recommendations on how to improve your productivity in the form of visual weekly reports that help you better schedule your work.
Friday - Workflow
Friday bills itself as “a home for your company”. Friday is great for creating aligned processes that structure the way your team communicates, whether that’s in the form of short updates about where a team member is at in a project, or having long form discussions about initial concepts and direction. It also helps to align your team in terms of output and goals by sharing each other’s progress along a project path.
Notion - Organisation and Collaboration
Notion is a productivity software designed to help members of a company or organisation coordinate deadlines, objectives, and assignments. Notion’s interface is minimal and user-friendly, gathering all of an organisation’s activities, operations and content in a single space. It functions like an internal Wikipedia for a company, capturing thoughts, managing, planning and executing projects by working on a system of building blocks that can be added together and customised for anything at all - documents, websites, databases etc. Multiple blocks form pages, which can be easily edited and rearranged as desired.
Notion also allows people to create and share templates to the public. If you are a Notion user, have a look through the available templates to find something for your next task.
Asana - Task and Project management
Asana is a powerful project management software that allows teams to work seamlessly on projects to hit their goals and targets in a more efficient way. Boards give users a clean visual overview of what’s happening in a project, while the Timeline lets you see how all the different pieces of a project fit together, keeping the job on schedule by mapping out and connecting all of the various different elements. It also has in-built reporting, analysis and insight tools that gauges project progress and helps troubleshoot where needed. Workflows are simplified using automation, reducing the need to focus on less important tasks.
RemoteHQ - Collaboration
RemoteHQ integrates many of the remote working tools we use daily, like Slack and Zoom, into one remote browser. This “cobrowsing” solution is ideal for fully distributed teams looking to streamline their virtual office by gathering all of the apps teams use to meet and collaborate in one room. This allows for both asynchronous and synchronous working, where team members can work together simultaneously on a number of documents at the same time, removing the need to toggle between different windows and tabs. RemoteHQ’s elevator pitch sums it up: “RemoteHQ is best for fully remote or hybrid teams at innovative companies willing to challenge the status quo and go beyond simply screen-sharing to fully functional collaboration across platforms all in one place.”
Miro - Visual Collaboration
Miro is a simple yet innovative solution for visual professionals who want to be able to collaborate and review each other’s work. Using a universal whiteboard, Miro brings visual content from a variety of sources together in one place, so everyone can see what everyone else is working on. It’s sort of like a virtual art gallery, and is used a lot by creatives, designers and researchers. It is great for ideation and brainstorming, mapping and diagramming, and strategy and planning. It is basically an infinite canvas that can capture all of the elements of any project across an endless, uninterrupted background.
GitHub - Software development
GitHub is a business collaboration tool geared specifically towards software developers. Designed to be used for coding, GitHub’s platform allows developers and companies to build, ship, and maintain their software, making it one of the most powerful tools in the sector. GitHub is unique because developers have access to all of the different tools they need to share their coding, rather than trying to share it in a platform that’s built for general communication. Software can also be built directly in the GitHub app, making it easier for your team to keep up with what’s going on, and to manage different projects directly from inside the system.
Slack - synchronous communication.
Slack is the collaboration hub that brings the right people, information, and tools together to get work done. From Fortune 100 companies to corner markets, millions of people around the world use Slack to connect their teams, unify their systems, and drive their business forward. At this point, if your company is using any type of chat, it's either Slack, Microsoft Teams, or Discord.
There is a myriad of tools around managing your business and working remotely, and these are the tip of the iceberg. We chose these tools as they aren't talked about as often as the usual Zoom/Meet/Teams/etc (With the exception of Slack).