Due to recent developments, many businesses are moving their work and processes online. While a few years back managing a completely remote team was unimaginable, nowadays, there are many tools and software to facilitate communication, manage time, and maintain productivity even without going to a physical office.
Moreover, working remotely has its perks too. You can save expenses on gas and meals out, completely cut your commute time, and spend more time with your family as well as on hobbies and self-care.
So, if your e-commerce business has employees and you’re transitioning into the online space, it’s a great time to start using tools that can facilitate work and communication.
Tools and Software to Manage a Remote Team
To effectively manage any business, you need effective communication. This is extremely important if you manage a remote team. Slack is a tool that can help you take your e-commerce business communication online.
Slack facilitates communication, barnstorming, sharing files, and more. You can set a variety of channels that pertain to different topics. This allows you to separate conversations and not overwhelm your team with conversations that are not relevant to them. Team members can also have private conversations that only they can see.
In addition to the above, Slack also integrates with other tools such as Skype and Zoom to make your team’s processes even more effective.
You can use a starter version of Slack for free, or upgrade your plan for more features and possibilities.
When you work from home, planning your time and sticking to a schedule is essential in order to stay productive. Asana is a planning tool that facilitates planning and task assignment that helps you manage remote teams.
You can assign tasks and subtasks to specific team members with deadlines you expect them to be completed on. Moreover, tasks allow you to add comments and files that are relevant to the specific tasks. Asana allows setting up individual as well as recurring tasks so that you do not have to assign the same task repeatedly.
Finally, you can also use Asana to set up your own to-do list and tick off tasks as you complete them throughout your workday. This can help you boost your morale by creating a sense of accomplishment.
Asana offers a plan that allows you to manage up to 15 teammates completely free of charge, but you man also upgrade for more features.
3. Google Drive
If you need to store or share files, Google Drive can be your go-to place. It also allows your team to collaborate and work on a single file at the same time. For instance, if your e-commerce store has a blog, you can share that with your remote team and ask them to edit or provide feedback on it. Then, you can see everything happen n real-time rather than wait for files to be reviewed and sent back to you.
Google Drive allows up to 15 GB of free storage, but you can always upgrade if you need more space.
Need to hold a team meeting? Then Zoom is your tool. It’s a calling app with high-quality video that facilitates video calls, messaging, screen sharing, and more. Zoom also allows you to record full-length videos that you can later download and share.
Zoom’s basic version is free. It allows hosting group meetings that are up to 40 minutes long and can host up to 100 participants at once. If that’ not enough, you can always upgrade your plan.
The lockdown period is an excellent time to start working on tasks that you may otherwise not have the time for, such as developing the content for your social media channels.
If you do not have the budget for an in-house graphic designer, Canva can help you solve your design problems. Canva is an online design platform that facilitates the creation of social media graphics, posters, presentations, and a lot more.
This tool has a database of easily editable templates as well as a wealth of fonts, icons, photos, and other graphics that allow you to easily create stunning visuals.
Like other tools, Canva has a limited free plan, but you can upgrade it for a small fee to widen your possibilities.
6. Time Doctor
If you pay your workers on an hourly basis, you may be worried if they effectively work on your tasks in their designated time. Especially if they are new and you do not know them well or trust them enough.
Then, Time Doctor is the right tool for you. Time Doctor is a time-tracking tool that helps you track the time that your workers spend on your e-commerce business’ tools and ensure that they work on what they are supposed to work on.
Moreover, Time Doctor takes screenshots of your worker’s screen. Screenshots occur at random times in every 10-minute interval, and the person who has Time Doctor on has no idea when the next screenshot will happen.
Time Doctor costs $9.99 per user a month. You can also try it for 14 days for free and see if it’s the right tool to manage your remote team.
Last but not least, you must ensure that your business remains safe in the online space. With so many companies transitioning to working remotely, cybersecurity is paramount.
LastPass is an online password vault that allows you to store all your passwords in a single place. In addition to teh above, you can also share them with your remote team without revealing what the passwords are. If at any time you need to revoke access to any of your passwords, you can easily do so with a few clicks.
LastPass has a few plans. One of them is a free one, which you can use if you are on a budget.
Do you manage a remote team? What online tools or software do you use to keep your team motivated and procustive?