written by
Dayana Mayfield

7 Best Collaboration Tools for Remote Teams

Content Collaboration 8 min read

Twitter has mandated that all global employees work from home. Shopify is giving each of its employees a $1000 stipend to buy whatever they need to ease the transition to remote work, be it a nicer chair or a new desk. We could all use a list of the best remote working tools right now.

7 Best Remote Working Tools

While none of us know what the long term effects of the coronavirus and COVID-19 will be, what we do is that remote work will never be the same.

In March and April of 2020, more companies will be going remote than ever before. These are companies who may not only have never tried remote work but were vehemently against it.

Some companies will hate it and will return to the office when (hopefully) the threat of this virus is gone. Other companies will never be the same and will allow far more remote work to happen than they did before the coronavirus.

Because it takes more than tech to succeed, we're covering:

Best remote working tools

Tools for remote work during the coronavirus shutdowns should not only help you collaborate and communicate, but they should also help you get work done faster.

You can't just walk over to your teammate's desk and ask for their approval on something. You need to move faster now that manual processes like that don't exist anymore.

Video meetings: Vectera


What it does

Vectera is an easy way to meet clients online. Schedule appointments and conduct video meetings. Create a shared communication hub for each of your clients. Get creative with whiteboards, co-browsing and document annotation. 1-click start, no downloads, no frustrations.

Why we love it

It's an easy replacement for Zoom! Some of the really nifty features include powerful whiteboarding and document annotation. All notes, documents and meeting recordings remain available in this virtual meeting room so you can always go back to it. It's also super easy to schedule meetings from this tool, it integrates with all major calendars.

Communication: Slack

Slack, remote working tool

What it does

Slack is definitely among the best remote working tools. It's a chat-style communication tool with file-sharing and calls. With Slack, you organize your chats into channels. So you could have a channel for each team or department, and also a few company-wide channels like "water cooler" and "announcements."

While Slack originally started as a way to remove email so that conversations could take place faster and with less formality, it now gets even more features to help distributed teams, including work calls.

Why we love it

This tool can help you in so many ways. If you set up channels for different projects, then it can serve as a place to easily find what you're looking for with collaborators. You can just go to that channel and find everything associated with that project that's ever been said or shared. That makes it a great way to find what you're looking for.

Cutting back on email inbox clutter is great. With Slack, you don't have to worry about perfect spelling.

Content Collaboration: StoryChief


What it does

StoryChief is a content marketing collaboration platform for managing all inbound marketing campaigns. This content ops tool helps you strategize, assign, manage, publish, and promote your content all in one place. You can create standard blog posts, and use blog posts as a way to distribute your podcasts or YouTube videos. There's also a social media management tool that allows you to craft, publish and measure your social posts!

Why we love it

The reason why it's one of the best remote working tools is, with StoryChief's dozens of integrations, you only have to click one button to send the post to your website, your email list and all of your social media channels.

Also, it's an enjoyable and smooth writing experience. When you're writing inside of Wordpress, it's very messy and it doesn't instantly save. Writing with StoryChief is as enjoyable as using Medium, plus there are all of the above time-saving collaboration and promotion features.

Sales: Salesflare


What it does

Salesflare is the perfect CRM for any small B2B business that wants to make more sales with less work.

The CRM is easy to use, visual and keeps most of your customer data automatically, so you can focus on your customers and on closing those deals.

Why we love it

Salesflare is perfectly integrated into G Suite and Office 365. It pulls in emails, meetings, email signatures, social data, ... and runs in a nifty sidebar next to your emails, so you never have to leave your email program to manage customers.

It's also the only CRM we've heard of that packs all its functionality in the mobile app. You can even send email campaigns on the go. And of course, StoryChief closely integrates with Salesflare, so you can send your leads from the blog straight into the CRM.

Project Management: Hive

Hive, remote working tool

What it does

Hive is a project management software that's used by big names like Google and Starbucks as well as small businesses. While there are lots of project management tools on the market, Hive goes a step further by helping managers better utilize their resources. You can more easily get an overview of what each individual on your team is working on, to know who to assign tasks and projects to.

Also, forms, files-sharing, and messaging features help you eliminate the use of other tools, so you can just stay inside of Hive and get work done.

Why we love it

Hive helps you organize tasks into a variety of styles: Gantt, kanban, calendar, table. While most project management tools include just one of these styles, Hive has all four. This is important because everyone has different preferences. One person on your team might love viewing their tasks in a table. For another person, they get confused if they use anything other than kanban. That's why it's definitely on our list of best remote working tools!x

Link management: Golinks

Golinks, remote working tool

What it does

GoLinks.io is an internal link management software that helps teams make short links for common company resources. If that sounded like gobbledy-gook to you, let's try another way: GoLinks.io lets you create short URLs like go/project to redirect to whatever important project you set that short URL to. These go links work for anyone in your company (with the same email domain as you).

Why we love it

Finding work is one of the biggest challenges for all types of companies, not just those that work remotely. You can save a lot of time for everyone on your team by making go links for the projects that you work on frequently. You can even set one up for your administrative team or HR to field all of the questions they answer repetitively for employees.

Brainstorming: Miro


What it does

Miro is a whiteboard platform for building customer journey maps, brainstorms, and more. Loved by creative teams who need to share big mockups and collaborate on complicated flows, Miro can also be utilized by teams in other departments too. Sometimes you just need to get your thoughts down on.

Why we love it

We only recently discovered Miro, but it's already one of the best remote working tools in our opinion! With a lot of smart integrations, Miro is more than a whiteboard app. It helps you implement your vision. You can embed Jira issues as cards in your whiteboard so that every idea becomes an assignable task. You can also attach Google Drive files, Github issues, and more.

Management strategies that make remote work more successful

While the right tools are definitely an important part of remote work success, they're not the whole story.

Here are some of the ways that entrepreneurs and executives have succeeded with fully remote teams in the past:

  • Support professional development - You can create a strong culture of remote work by valuing employees the unique individuals they are. Set aside a budget and time for them to gain new skills. Especially when there's not in-person mentoring, this is really helpful.
  • Encourage proactive updates - Make sure your team has a system for keeping each other up-to-date on the progress of individual tasks beyond the small updates on tasks. This might be an end-of-the-day or end-of-the-week announcement by each person in Slack.
  • Be transparent on company initiatives and projects - With remote work, people can't always see what others are working on or what the higher-ups are prioritizing. Make sure to share what others are working on and what's important to the company as a whole.

How to stay productive and healthy as a remote worker

  • Stock up on healthy snacks - When you work from home, you will eat what's in your house! Buy nuts, dried fruit, and other quick and easy snacks that are good for you.
  • Create a schedule for your kids if they have to be home too - If your kids have to stay home from school, it will help everyone's sanity to have a routine. Here's an example: they read or play until 10 am, then they get to watch a movie, then they read or play for another 2 or 3 hours, then they have a living room dance party for 20 minutes to exercise, then they get to watch another movie.
  • Schedule meetings when you need them - We've all read how many meetings are unnecessary and poorly managed. This can lead people to not schedule meetings even when it's important! If you need a meeting, don't feel bad to request one, especially when you're working remotely and feel out of touch.
  • Make time for exercise - Maybe you walk to work, maybe you normally walk on your lunch break, or maybe you take the stairs to the bathroom. At home, you're probably missing out on your normal steps. Make some time to do jumping jacks or lift dumbbells.

Working remotely will take a lot of getting used to for millions of workers around the world. Fortunately, there are companies and tools lighting the way.

Ready to master your content ops? Check out StoryChief.

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