Remote work has become the new norm, with 36.2 million Americans projected to be remote by 2025—and for good reason. It offers many benefits, including the flexibility to work from any location. However, remote work also presents its own unique set of challenges, such as maintaining communication with team members and adjusting to the lack of face-to-face interaction. That’s where remote work software comes in.
Online tools make it easier for team members to share ideas, work together, and achieve their goals, regardless of their physical location. In this guide, we’ll provide you with our top recommendations for remote work software, including:
Whether you need communication tools, project management software, file-sharing platforms, or other collaborative applications, we’ll help you find the best remote work software so you can keep your team engaged and invested in the success of your business. But first, let’s answer some frequently asked questions to guide your search.
Remote Work Software 101: What You Need To Know
What is remote work software?
Remote work software refers to the tools, platforms, and applications that make remote and hybrid work more collaborative and productive. These tools can include video conferencing apps, automated payroll software, direct messaging platforms, among other solutions. Because it allows teams to connect from anywhere in the world, remote work software is an essential component of the modern workplace.
What are the benefits of remote work software?
With an increase in individuals working remotely, having the right software is essential for effective collaboration among team members. If your company uses a fully remote or hybrid work model, remote work software can offer a number of benefits, including:
- Improved Communication: Remote work software empowers teams to stay connected and communicate efficiently. With features like live chat, video conferencing, and real-time collaboration tools, teams can work together and update each other on projects and tasks. This, in turn, helps to create a more tight-knit company culture.
- Scalability: With cloud-based solutions, software can be easily scaled to accommodate the growing needs of remote teams, allowing organizations to add new users and features without requiring additional infrastructure.
- Increased Productivity: Employees can work from any location with remote work software. Plus, with the ability to work outside of traditional office hours, employees can better manage their time and work at their own pace. This can lead to increased productivity, better work-life balance, and improved employee retention.
As remote work continues to grow in popularity, you’ll want to establish systems to support your remote employees early on. Invest in these smart solutions now to reap their benefits and ensure your employees’ productivity.
How can I select the right remote work software for my company’s needs?
When it comes to choosing the best remote work software for your company, there are several factors to consider. Here are some tips to help you make the right choice:
- Identify your company’s needs and goals. Before selecting a remote work software solution, assess your company’s specific needs and goals for remote work to help narrow down your choices. What are the core features you need to operate remotely, such as video conferencing, team chat, and file sharing.
- Evaluate features and functionality. Once you have a list of potential software options, review each one’s features and functionality. Look for software that meets your needs and offers additional features that can aid your company’s remote work. Evaluate the software’s user interface, ease of use, and customization options. Ensure that it has a reliable infrastructure with a track record of high performance and uptime.
- Consider budget and ROI. Some solutions can be costly, so assess your budget and determine what you can afford to spend. Consider the ROI of each software option, keeping in mind that the cheapest option may not necessarily be the best value. Evaluate the software’s pricing models, including factors like subscription fees and additional costs for extra features or customization.
- Seek out user reviews and recommendations. Before making a final decision, research the software’s online reviews and customer ratings. Look for software options with a track record of positive reviews and customer satisfaction. Reach out to colleagues or other industry professionals to hear their experiences with certain software.
By following these tips, you can ensure that your software aligns with your needs, budget, and goals, which will ultimately lead to better engagement and productivity among your remote team members.
Top 10 Remote Working Tools
Whether you’re new to remote work or an experienced remote worker looking to improve your workflow, the following top remote working tools can help you stay connected and organized.
1. eCardWidget: Best Employee Recognition Software
eCardWidget is the perfect solution for organizations struggling to engage their remote workers. With our easy-to-use software, you can create digital employee recognition cards to celebrate milestones, create a culture of appreciation, and boost employee retention. Plus, they’re branded to reinforce your company values and mission.
Partner with eCardWidget to utilize:
- Customizable eCard templates that allow you to add your logo and change colors, fonts, and layouts.
- Social media, SMS, and email sharing integrations.
- An address book for storing employee email addresses.
- Scheduling capabilities, so you remember to send eCards on important dates like work anniversaries and retirement parties.
Start recognizing your team’s achievements for free, or invest in an affordable pricing plan to receive access to unlimited eCards and priority support.
2. Zoom: Best Video Conferencing Software
Zoom is a video conferencing platform that allows remote workers to host virtual meetings, webinars, and web conferences. As a result, teams can effectively communicate and collaborate regardless of their physical location.
Some of its top features include:
- Collaboration tools such as screen-sharing, file-sharing, and virtual whiteboards for effective group work.
- Breakout rooms for splitting larger meetings into smaller groups for discussion.
- Recording and transcription options for future reference or accessibility purposes.
- Encryption and password protection for secure meetings.
These are just a few of the many features offered by Zoom, which vary depending on the specific subscription level.
3. Slack: Best Instant Messaging Software
If you’re looking for a user-friendly instant messaging program for your remote team, check out Slack. This software solution is designed to keep teams connected and organized, allowing you to send and receive announcements, questions, or reminders in seconds.
With Slack, you will receive:
- The ability to organize discussions in channels.
- Integration with other tools, like Google Drive and Zoom, for streamlined workflows.
- Customizable notifications and reminders to stay on top of tasks.
- Searchable archives of messages and files for easy access to past conversations.
Slack is free for most users. However, if you own a large corporation and require greater messaging capabilities, there is a small monthly fee.
4. Trello: Best Workflow Management Software
Trello is a project management tool that encourages remote workers to streamline their workflows. Users can organize their assignments through boards or break projects into smaller tasks using cards. Cards can have checklists, due dates, labels, and attachments, depending on your team’s needs.
Trello also gives you access to:
- Customizable boards for visualizing projects and workflows.
- An easy drag-and-drop interface for task management.
- Collaboration tools such as comments and file attachments.
- A calendar feature to see deadlines and plan ahead.
Trello has a free plan, which includes unlimited personal boards, cards, members, and attachments. However, larger teams may require a paid plan that offers greater storage and board space.
5. Asana: Best Project Management Software
Asana is another web-based project management and collaboration tool that allows individuals and teams to manage tasks, projects, and workflows. Unlike Trello, which specializes in using boards to represent tasks, Asana leverages a more traditional list-based approach. This can influence the way teams organize their workflows, and may be a deciding factor in choosing between the two.
Here are some of Asana’s other standout features:
- Time tracking capabilities for hourly workers.
- Customizable project views, including list, board, and timeline formats.
- Collaboration tools such as comments, file attachments, and mentions.
- Robust reporting and analytics capabilities to track progress and ROI.
- Integration with over 200 other software tools.
Get started with Asana for free, or invest in their paid plans to access greater project management capabilities.
6. Google Drive: Best Cloud Storage Software
Google Drive is a cloud-based storage and collaboration platform. It allows remote workers to store and access files from anywhere with an internet connection and facilitates real-time collaboration on documents, spreadsheets, and presentations with other users.
With Google Drive, you’ll receive access to:
- 15GB of free storage with paid upgrade options available.
- Easy file sharing with customizable access permissions.
- Integration with other Google tools such as Gmail and Google Calendar.
Larger businesses will need to invest in a Google Workspace plan, which includes more storage and more collaboration capabilities for teams.
7. Grammarly: Best Writing Assistant Software
Grammarly is a writing assistant tool that uses artificial intelligence to check grammar, spelling, punctuation, and style in real time. It’s designed to help remote workers improve the quality and clarity of their writing across various platforms and devices.
Grammarly offers a variety of features, including:
- Suggestions for hundreds of types of grammatical errors, spelling, and punctuation mistakes.
- Alternate phrasing to improve clarity, tone, and style.
- Context-aware vocabulary enhancement.
- Integration with popular platforms such as Microsoft Word and Google Docs.
Grammarly has both a free and premium version, with the premium version providing more advanced features such as a plagiarism checker and suggestions for genre-specific writing style.
8. Zoho Vault: Best Password-Sharing Software
In a remote work environment, maintaining password protection is critical, and tools like Zoho Vault can help teams securely store and share passwords for their various accounts. With this cloud-based password management tool, managers can control access to passwords, ensuring that only authorized personnel have access to sensitive data.
Zoho Vault also offers:
- Secure and centralized password management with multi-factor authentication.
- Automated password rotation for enhanced security.
- Customizable password sharing with permission control.
- Automated compliance monitoring and audit trail.
Zoho Vault is available as a standalone application or as an integration with other products such as Zoho CRM, Zoho Projects, and Zoho Desk.
9. Deel: Best Payroll Software
If your remote team is located in different parts of the world, you could benefit from using Deel, a platform for managing HR tasks, such as payroll, compliance, and benefits. This streamlines administrative tasks and reduces the workload for managers, allowing them to focus on other important tasks.
With Deel, you can:
- Hire employees abroad.
- Run payroll in 90+ currencies.
- Automate payroll processing, including tax withholding and benefits administration.
- Check compliance for international labor laws and regulations.
Deel’s pricing plan varies based on your needs. If you simply need to hire and pay remote employees, you can get started for free.
10. Lucidspark: Best Whiteboard Software
Lucidspark is an online whiteboard tool that helps remote teams collaborate visually on projects and share ideas in real time. It provides a digital canvas for brainstorming, mind mapping, and organizing ideas with features such as:
- A user-friendly interface for easy and intuitive use.
- Collaborative capabilities, allowing multiple team members to work on the same whiteboard simultaneously.
- A variety of templates, including flowcharts, mind maps, and SWOT analysis tools to help users get started quickly.
- The ability to import and export files for seamless integration with other tools and workflows.
To take full advantage of Lucidspark’s whiteboarding features, start a free trial with an Individual or Team plan.
A Final Note About Remote Work Software
As remote work becomes a more prevalent part of our professional lives, selecting the right software for your team has never been more important. From real-time messaging to task management, remote work software offers a range of features designed to make collaboration more seamless and productive. By following the tips and recommendations outlined in this guide, you can be confident that your business has the best remote work software at its disposal.
If you want to learn more about remote work software and how it can support your business, explore these additional resources:
- How to Motivate Employees in the Workplace: 10 Easy Steps. Employee motivation is critical for your organization’s success. Follow these 10 strategies to motivate your remote employees.
- Employee Engagement Software: Crash Course & 10+ Top Options. Explore these top employee engagement software providers to empower your remote team.
- 11 Top Corporate Gifting Companies & Platforms to Consider. These top corporate gifting companies can help your company recognize the contributions made by remote employees.