9 Tools for Remote Teams to Seamlessly Work from Home

Last Updated September 30th, 2020

More and more companies, like Twitter, Facebook, and Slack, are letting employees work from home indefinitely. And if you’re reading this, your company is among them — or might not be far behind. So, how do you keep your team working seamlessly from afar? With the right tools for remote teams.

Because while there are many pros to working remotely, there are also challenges. According to Buffer’s 2020 State of Remote Work, the top reported hurdles to remote work include collaboration and communication, loneliness, inability to unplug, and distractions at home. The good news is that there are many tools out there to help you and your team overcome them.

tools for remote teams

There are obvious choices like Slack, Asana, and Google Drive. But we wanted to focus more on tools you may not have heard of yet. Watch the video below and keep reading for a list of the nine best tools for remote workers…

1. Clockwise

Best For: Time Management

Pricing: Custom

Free Trial Available? Yes

Cloud or Download? Cloud

Need a hand with managing your calendar, scheduling meetings, and maximizing focus time? Look no further than Clockwise. The smart calendar assistant works within G Suite and Google Chrome (and soon Office365) to accomplish all of the above and more directly on your Google Calendar. The tool is perfect for every team member — no matter the role.

Feature Highlights:

Autopilot – This feature allows you to select flexible meetings for Clockwise to reschedule in case there are conflicting meetings. It also ensures you and your team have more focus time.

Focus Time Holds – Clockwise has a functionality to set aside dedicated focus time each week. It will automatically schedule focus time into your calendar based on your availability and a “Focus Time Goal” of your choosing.

Seamless team time management – Clockwise for Teams gives you accessible insights into your team’s weekly capacity, showcases your team’s availability when scheduling meetings, and create no-meeting days for your team to have protected focus time.

2. Grammarly

Best For: Business Writing and Editing

Pricing: Free (with premium upgrade options)

Free Trial Available? No

Cloud or Download? Both

We all wish we had a personal assistant to read through our emails, posts, and documents before they’re sent or published. Grammarly makes that a reality with real-time spelling and grammar review for everything from entire documents and emails to social media posts.

Grammarly checks for correctness, clarity, engagement, and delivery. So with this AI-powered writing assistant, you’ll not only have more polished writing but it’ll also be of higher quality.

Feature Highlights:

Tone Detector – Ever wonder what tone you’re conveying as you’re writing? Grammarly checks this for you in Gmail and many of your favorite social media networks. This feature makes sure your text matches the tone you’re intending.

Apps – Grammarly has various apps to work inside the tools and devices you use most, like: macOS, Microsoft Word, iPad, Google Chrome, and smartphones. Just download it and you’re ready to go.

Goals – You can set goals for every piece of writing you’re using Grammarly for. The goals will fall under four distinct categories — audience, formality, domain, and tone — to provide more personalized suggestions.

3. Zoom

Best For: Synchronous Team Communication

Pricing: Free (with premium and team upgrade options)

Free Trial Available? No

Cloud or Download? Both

Zoom will likely be one of the most well-known tools for remote teams in this list — but it’s an essential one. You rely on face-to-face communication every day to do your job. So, video conferencing is an absolute must and Zoom is the leader in this space. Find out how you can use Zoom and BombBomb for seamless remote communication in this blog post.

Zoom’s free plan offers a high participant capacity of 100 individuals and 40-minute meetings, making it a great synchronous communication option for any remote professional.

Feature Highlights:

Screen sharing – Share presentation slide decks, documents, meeting agendas and more relevant information for your meetings at the touch of a button with this Zoom feature.

Breakout sessions – Want to give your team an opportunity to brainstorm or map out different components of a project? Zoom allows you to create breakout sessions within your meeting to do this. This feature is also great for discussions and team-building icebreaker sessions.

Personal Meeting ID – Your Zoom Personal Meeting ID essentially functions as your own permanent virtual meeting room. It can be utilized for any meeting at any time, as well as scheduled Zoom meetings.

4. BombBomb

screen recorder

Best For: Video Messaging

Pricing: $33/month for BombBomb Essentials | $49/month for BombBomb Plus

Free Trial Available? Yes. Access it here.

Cloud or Download? Cloud

BombBomb is a video messaging tool that allows you to connect with team members face to face. You see, not every piece of communication requires a meeting. However, messages get lost in translation in a plain-text message sent over email or Slack. This makes asynchronous video tools for remote teams like BombBomb so valuable.

With this video messaging software, you can communicate with your team members by sending them a quick video message for them to watch at a time that is best for them. It’s you, face to face, delivering that message, allowing for clearer and more meaningful and effective team communication. Read more about how BombBomb accomplishes this in this article.

Feature Highlights:

Screen Recorder – The BombBomb Screen Recorder allows you to record yourself and your screen at the same time. This is perfect for offering feedback on work to fellow team members, asking a technical or complex question, offering instructions, and more.

Real-time analytics – BombBomb’s tracking capabilities notifies you of email opens and video plays, so you can follow up with colleagues accordingly.

Chrome Extension – If Google Chrome is your default browser, you can download the BombBomb Chrome Extension to record videos quickly for team members. You can then copy the link directly from the extension to share the video over Slack, or email your video right from your browser.

5. Donut

Best For: Team Camaraderie

Pricing: Free for up to 24 people, then starts at $49/month

Free Trial Available? Yes, for premium plans.

Cloud or Download? N/A

With loneliness among one of the major struggles of remote workers, it’s worth considering tools for remote teams to connect and get to know one another. Donut works within Slack to accomplish this seamlessly. It pairs team members together for meet-ups to instill a sense of camaraderie across your organization.

Feature Highlights:

Random pairings – Every month (or whatever frequency you select), Donut will randomly pair up team members from the designated Donut Slack channel, so they can meet up and learn more about each other. This brings people together — no matter what department they are in or where they work from — making it perfect for remote teams.

Reminders – People get busy and forget to make time for their Donut get-togethers. Thankfully, Donut is great at sending reminders for each pairing to meet up (if they haven’t already done so).

6. I Done This

Best For: Tracking team progress

Pricing: Starts at $9/month

Free Trial Available? Yes, for teams. Access it here.

Cloud or Download? Cloud

Complement your morning stand-up meeting with a remote team tool that tracks progress on the daily tasks team members committed to — like I Done This. The tool enhances productivity by monitoring daily updates, progress, and more in one place.

Feature Highlights:

 Daily status updates – While daily tasks are discussed in your stand-ups, they tend to be forgotten if they’re not recorded. In I Done This, your team members can record the assignments they’re taking on each day — in the form of daily status updates — so they don’t get lost.

Progress reports – You can keep track of your team’s progress with ease by using this feature. I Done This automatically takes all of your team’s check-ins to create a comprehensive progress report.

7. Lucidchart

Best For: Brainstorming

Pricing: Free (with premium plan options)

Free Trial Available? No

Cloud or Download? Cloud

One of the perks of an office environment is the ability to meet and brainstorm as a group in person. However, for remote teams, this is a bit more difficult to do. But it is possible with Lucidchart. This tool is an online diagram software and visual solution for teams to virtually share ideas and collaborate on them.

Feature Highlights:

Whiteboarding – You may not have a physical whiteboard to record important ideas and discussions from meetings, but you do have Lucidchart’s whiteboarding capabilities at your disposal. With it, you can keep record meeting information and agendas, discussion points, action items, etc. You and your team members can continuously comment on the whiteboard items as needed.

Diagramming and flowcharting – Lucidchart diagram and flowchart-building features make it simple to map out ideas visually, alongside your colleagues.

8. Workfrom

Best For: Finding alternative remote work locations

Pricing: Free

Free Trial Available? No

Cloud or Download? Cloud

After working from home for a while, it’s normal to feel a bit restless and need a break from the home office. However, it can be a little challenging finding a quiet, public space with reliable WiFi connection. Workfrom lists it all for you in one place. It’s a directory of sorts for all the places you can work from in your area.

Feature Highlights:

Workspace Directory – Search through Workfrom’s comprehensive database of public workspaces for places to work remotely. It’s based on Workfrom’s community member feedback. Whether you’re looking for a coffee shop, library, or restaurants, you will find a place to work away from your home.

Each listing has detailed information on locations (WiFi, hours, background noise, seating, outlets, etc.), and reviews from other remote workers — just like you.

WFH Forum – This forum allows you to connect with other remote workers on all aspects and topics related to working remotely.

9. Noisli

Best For: White noise for focus

Pricing: Free (with premium and team plan options)

Free Trial Available? No

Cloud or Download? Cloud

The noises while working from home are infinite. The washer and dryer are whirling and humming. Your kids are watching TV or playing on their tablets loudly. The dogs are barking. Sometimes you just need a tool that will drown it out and help you focus. And what you need is Noisli.

It’s a virtual space for focus with the perfect white noise sounds to help you concentrate on the task at hand.

Feature Highlights:

Sounds and playlists – Noisli has up to 28 background noises for you to blend and tailor to your liking. Combine noises and adjust the volume of each however you’d like. You can also create playlists to save for specific work situations, set favorites, and utilize the shuffle mode so sounds alternate among your favorite combinations.

Oscillation – Enable this feature and Noisli will gently and periodically change the volume of individual sounds as each combination plays to add a little variety to your listening experience.

Timer – This feature gives you the ability to set a timer so that Noisli softly stops playing your music when the time is up. This encourages you and your team members to work in sessions, so you don’t get burned out.

Manage Your Remote Teams More Effectively

You now have all the best tools for remote teams to keep you and your colleagues on the right track while working from home. Still, another component of remote work remains — virtual team management.

The good news is that managing your remote team can be done effectively and easily with video using one of the tools for remote teams listed above: BombBomb. Learn more in the article below…

Vivian Lopez | About The Author

Storyteller, writer, editor. Mother of a fearless little girl. Content Marketing Writer, BombBomb. BA, California State University-Long Beach.

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