Info-tech

Working from home? Here are 20 apps to simplify your day

Hemani Sheth Mumbai | Updated on March 18, 2020 Published on March 18, 2020

The employees asked to work from home may see it as an effort to sideline them from the company istock.com/triloks triloks

 

With the number of COVID-19 cases on the rise, authorities across the globe have opted for social distancing by closing down public places including malls, movie theatres, gyms and public pools.

Many private offices have followed suit by allowing employees to work from home. With technology at their disposal, Work from Home (WFH) is no longer an inconvenience.

Here’s a list of 20 apps that can simplify working from home much simpler:

Virtual meetings

There are a lot of all-in-one apps available that can help remote workers conduct and record virtual meetings.

Zoom is a good tool for holding online meetings with a large team. It also lets users record and broadcast meetings for later.

Team viewer is a remote collaboration tool that allows desktop sharing, online meetings, web conferencing and file transfer between devices.

Join.me is another alternative with features such as screen sharing apart from audio and video calling.

Zoho has offered to provide its remote collaboration tool for free till July 1 with features including video and audio calls, real-time collaboration, messaging, etc.

Mainstream tech giants are also pitching in with their web conferencing and online collaboration tools. Cisco, for instance, is giving 90-day free licenses to non-customers for its online collaboration tool Cisco Webex.

Tech giants like Google and Microsoft are also offering up similar tools such as Microsoft Teams and Google Hangouts for business.

However, Microsoft Teams in Europe recently reported a problem related to its messaging functionality which the tech giant said that it was working to resolve.

Earlier this month, Google announced that it will also be giving out the advanced features of its Hangouts for businesses for free until July.

As for other mainstream tools for video conferencing, there’s always the good, old Skype for business.

Daily communication

Communication is key in the case of WFH. Users can use free messaging apps such as WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger for group communication with colleagues over text.

Microsoft’s Slack is another preferred alternative. Slack also lets users transfer files and documents over the app. The free version of Slack, however, has a limit to the number of messages that can be sent and archived between a team. Companies can opt for the paid version which is meant for bigger teams, based on the number of employees.

Few companies have also switched over to Telegram for smoother communication between colleagues over text. Telegram too, lets users send files and documents as well as communicate via text messages over the app.

For Apple users, FaceTime is also a good option in case of one-on-one communication with team members.

Work management

Trello is a good tool for keeping track of ongoing projects and the work done by members of a team. It’s a virtual roster for sorting out to-do lists by team members with different boards for different projects where all members can track the work done, give comments and share links of work completed. Trello is available on iOS, Android and Microsoft.

Asana, a SaaS tool by Facebook’s co-founder Dustin Moskovitz is a handy tool for project management. There’s a free version of the app that’s available with limited features which let 15 team members collaborate on a project with tasks lists and boards for projects. The paid versions add more features such as timeline, schedules, advanced reporting, etc. Asana’s mobile app is available on iOS and Android only, unlike Trello.

Basecamp is a good alternative for smart project management. It works for small scale projects and is available n iOS, Android, Windows and Mac. The app features a messaging board, a chat room and also enables file transfer. There’s a limited version of the app available for free. Users with larger teams to collaborate with can opt for the paid version.

Document management

Quip is a useful tool which lets users create calendars, spreadsheets, word documents, and share the same with colleagues.

Google Drive is a convenient option, especially for existing Gmail users. The storage space on Drive is, however, limited. Users can purchase more storage for their Drive using the paid version.

Dropbox is also a good way to store and transfer files of large volumes. Users can save their files and share them with other members if needed to let them edit or add new stuff.

Box is an alternative to Google Drive and Dropbox which allows users to save and share files securely. The app can also be integrated with Office 365, Google Apps and Slack.

Apart from these 20 apps that can help remote workers manage meetings and projects, there are a lot of apps that can help employees stay productive. Time Doctor, for instance, is a time-tracking app that can help you stay focused and meet deadlines. Hours and Toggle are other apps to manage time.

Noisil, another app that helps employees stays focus is a paid app for Android and iOS that works like a white noise machine producing ambient sounds for better concentration.

 

Published on March 18, 2020
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