Business apps have become a huge part of the way modern professionals work. Businesses have always used tools to compliment and support their work, and business apps are just the latest of doing it – they are especially useful for professionals who work remotely. We reached out to some IT support companies London businesses have used to optimise their business and support remote employees – what they had to say about apps for remote workers came down to this: These apps should close the gap between remote workers and their colleagues.
Below is a list of the main categories of business apps that remote workers should ensure they are using:
Robust communication is important for any business, but especially for one with remote workers. In the absence of inter-office communications, direct messaging will become an integral part of the workday. One of the companies we spoke with provides managed IT services London businesses used to setup remote working and they said that, invariably, communications were a priority in each case.
There are a lot of high-quality business messaging solutions available. For example, Slack is a cloud-based team messaging solutions that makes it easy to organise conversations into different message channels. For businesses the use Microsoft products, Microsoft Teams would be a perfect messaging solution.
2. Office Suite
An Office suite is the colloquial term for the collection of applications that have come to be associated with office work – including word processors, spreadsheets, presentation software, email clients, etc. An office suite is crucial for all businesses, and a cloud-based office suite is best for those with remote employees.
The most popular office suites include Office 365 – including Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and several other apps, all of which are linked to the cloud and therefore can be accessed from any device. Google Workspace is a similar suite.
3. Video Conferencing / Telephony
Another important facet of communication for remote workers is video conferencing and calling. In lieu of face-to-face communications, video meetings can help keep remote workers feeling involved with the company culture; and telephony has been a part of business for decades.
Nowadays, thanks to the cloud, telephony and video conferencing can actually be combined into the same platform – known as unified communications. An example of a UC platform that provides video calls and telephony is Microsoft Teams.
What with remote workers taking part in more meetings and calls than their colleagues in the office, they will need a decent way to schedule their meetings. There are a number of good scheduling tools that individuals can utilize while working remotely. For instance, Doodle is a desktop and web app that lets you create polls for agreeing on a meeting time that works for all involved.
Being able to sign documents is very important; although possible it is something that one doesn’t think of much until they need to do it. If you’re in the office it may be much easier to sign documents as they come – you have printers and scanners and plenty of stationary. But what if you don’t have a printer/scanner and suddenly a document is send your way that you need to sign? E-signature apps like Docusign, or Adobe Acrobat will ensure that you’re never stuck in that situation.
6. Task/Project Management
Managing tasks and projects is how teams, individuals, and businesses achieve high performance and productivity. Having a solution for managing tasks and projects is especially important for remote workers who are engaging in entirely self-directed work throughout the day. Apps like Todoist or Microsoft To Do are great for individuals, and in terms of collaborative work management, solutions like Asana and Trello work well.
7. VPN Client
When people work from home, they’re connecting to their home Wi-Fi, which might not be as secure as the company network. What is more, remote workers may also travel and work, or go to public places to work – in those situations, connecting to a public network is especially risky. Mitigating the risks is as easy as using a VPN client – such as ExpressVPN or NordVPN – to protect one’s internet connection.