5 of our favourite remote software products that could help to boost productivity

Getting the most out of working remotely can be challenging, both for individual employees and for the team managing the business. Ensuring productivity is maximised outside of a central office location means utilising technologies that may be new for many people.

Many of our existing clients use software to maintain connection to their wider team and to their clients and so we are used to seeing these benefits first hand.

We have put together a list of remote working software products that could help you to boost your productivity throughout this time.

Google Drive

Google Drive is a cloud storage system that lets you keep your files in one central location online. You and anyone else in your team can add, remove, edit and update files in one place. This is great for remote user access when operating as part of a larger team or as a freelancer and can be a huge help for individuals that need to create their own sets of tasks.

Google Drive comes equipped with a powerful set of office tools that allow you to create and edit documents on the go and all within the browser. This means you don’t need to worry about having the same computer or laptop with you to continue to manage your files.

In Google Drive you can also track yours and your teams edits in real-time, allowing managers to accept or reject suggestions to documents as well as tag people in comments and notes.

If you haven’t used a cloud-based document system in your organisation before Google Drive is very user friendly and so is a great place to start without much need for assistance.

Office 365

Very similar to Google Drive, Office 365 allows centralised access and control of your documents and resources.

Where it differs perhaps is its level of integration with existing software that many people will already have access to. Created by Microsoft, it brings all of the Office Suite of programs online, allowing you real time access on the go, via the browser as well as through the individual software applications that you may have downloaded to your computer already.

This makes it great for balancing private documents and shared files with your wider team.

Office 365 is also one of the most popular cloud-sharing systems in the world, which means when sharing files with your clients it is likely they will already be familiar with the platform and how it works.

Dropbox

Dropbox has been around for a while now and has set the bar high as a platform that offers file sharing with ease. If you haven’t got an account with Dropbox yourself, it is highly likely that you have interacted with it in some way, perhaps even without being aware.

Cloud based storage and sharing systems like Dropbox act as portable directories for all of your files which can be accessed from anywhere with a connection to the internet.

It differs slightly from Office 365 and Google Drive because it was originally designed just as a cloud storage provider. But Dropbox has come a long way over the last few years and now integrates most of the same cloud-based software that the others do, for example a spreadsheet saved in Dropbox can be opened straight into Microsoft Excel with Office 365.

WeTransfer

Perhaps a lesser known resource for remote workers, WeTransfer is a fantastic, secure and free platform to send large files to colleagues and clients without the need for sign-ups or purchasing of storage solutions like those listed above.

WeTransfer is popular with freelancers and professional service providers who need to send their clients large sets of files or final copies of documents and media that is too large for a standard email transfer.

The great thing about WeTransfer is that you only need to enter yours and the file recipients email addresses and do not need to sign up or give any further information. WeTransfer acts as an intermediary service, sending the recipient an email which contains a link that expires after a few days.

It’s secure and can be used to send multiple files (up to 2GB) for free.

There are also options to upgrade to include file storage and larger file transfers.

Userlane

Userlane is software which allows you to provide your employees with a virtual assistant right within the applications they use. A virtual assistant will guide them through processes and explain how software is being used at your organization.

It’s a great way to continue offering learning and development to your staff when you can’t be there in person to train them yourself.

The platform isn’t free but it could be well worth the investment if you have considered moving your staff from large fixed offices to remote coworking spaces nearer to their homes but you are worried about their development.

Industry-Specific Software

There are plenty of other software services out there which are more tailored towards specific industries.

At StonesThrow we use a cloud-based software to help us manage bookings and invoices. This means we can focus more of our time on supporting our members.

If you need accounting software for your business, a few examples include Xero, Sage and NetSuite. These use cloud technology which allows you to securely manage accounts from anywhere. From this you can manage your business finances, helping you to plan and budget more effectively.

Say your company handles ecommerce stock management, there are software services for this too. Examples include Microsoft Dynamics NAV, OrderWise and RightControl. These software services allow you to manage your business database online, perfect for stock level monitoring, inventory control and reporting.

We recommend that you have a look around online to find software services with the right tools needed for your specific industry.

At StonesThrow, we are used to working with our clients to help them maximise their productivity when moving from their previous working environment and into our shared office space.

We welcome our members to impart their knowledge to each other, both through meaningful business connections and via our Productivity Hub.

If you are an existing member of StonesThrow, please feel free to submit your articles to help advise on your industry related tips that can help with productivity. If you are not currently a member of StonesThrow and would like to find out more information about our coworking space located in Crowborough contact us today on 01892 710968 or email hello@stonesthrow.work