Over the past two and a half years, more and more people have made a permanent switch to remote work. Part of that was out of necessity, as the Covid-19 pandemic made working in close proximity to others a dangerous undertaking. But it also represented a trend that was well underway before that.
The reason it was happening is a simple one — advancing technology. Today, almost any office worker can access all of the tools and technologies they need to do their jobs as well at home as they can from the office. And there is even a new generation of tools coming online geared specifically toward remote workers.
But for anyone thinking of joining the ranks of today’s remote workforce, it’s important to know what kinds of tools are available so you’ll know how to set yourself up for success. Here are the four productivity technology essentials for remote workers.
Time Management Software
The biggest challenge associated with working remotely is a lack of structure. Without set start and stop times, no managerial supervision, and plenty of distractions, it’s not always easy to establish a great workflow outside an office. It’s one of the main reasons so many employers have taken to monitoring remote employees — so they can be certain that every employee uses their time to the utmost. And these days, there are so many software solutions that offer that (like the one from Insightful, for example), that it’s easy as pie to keep track of everything.
But remote workers can manage their own time if they adopt and use time management software. Many provide helpful scheduling functions, reminders for appointments and meetings, and even the ability to analyze your usage of time. With the right time management software, remote workers will get as much — or more — done than they ever did in the office.
Dealing with distractions is one of the hardest things a new remote worker must master. With complete freedom to do what you will, it’s not always easy to stay on task and not waste time. But there are a variety of apps and browser plugins designed to help. Some of the best chrome extensions for productivity combine time-saving functions with anti-distraction mechanisms. And some apps do everything from blocking distracting web pages to giving you helpful positive reinforcement to stay on task. And they’re often a godsend for anyone who struggles to block out distractions when working remotely.
Remote Collaboration Software
In an office environment, collaboration is simple. Your co-workers are nearby, there are meeting spaces reserved for brainstorming, and communication is as simple as picking up your desk phone. But remote workers often struggle with collaborative efforts if they don’t have the right technology in place. Fortunately, solutions like Google Workspace, Slack, and Atlassian Jira solve that problem and then some. Today, there are multiple paid and free collaboration tools and platforms to suit almost any type of work.
Personal Wellness Apps and Software
Although most people don’t realize it right away, the isolation of working from home or at another remote location has a debilitating effect after a while. And the latest research says that it will leave you unhappy and less productive. To fight those effects, all remote workers should try one — or more — of the personal wellness apps and software which are now widely available. Many of them focus on improving your mental health through a variety of techniques, while others offer exercise routines and physical fitness regimens aimed at helping you stay in peak condition.
By now, it’s quite clear that remote work will be a permanent part of the modern business landscape. And that means it’s only a matter of time before the majority of workers find themselves working from home or outside the office at least some of the time. For those looking to jump on the opportunities remote work has to offer, the technologies above are must-haves to ensure they remain productive and engaged in their work. Plus, they make doing most jobs easier and less stressful, too — and that alone makes them worth adding to your remote work tech arsenal.