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Remote Work Benefits & Useful Tools To Improve Productivity While Doing So 1

Remote Work Benefits & Useful Tools To Improve Productivity While Doing So

Today, the most significant trend affecting employment in the technology industry is the increased acceptance of remote teams. It’s possible largely due to the availability of effective tools that enable remote working. In 2020, over 50% of the adult workforce will be working remotely, according to a Global Leadership Summit survey. And this was predicted even before people started working remotely due to the global pandemic of COVID-19. So, let’s take a look at the benefits of remote working for software engineering teams.

Increased Productivity

Remote software teams have the flexibility to work when they’re most productive. Not all individuals are productive between 8am to 8pm. Remote teams can spread their coverage out over 24 hours. Each person can focus and accomplish the completion of tasks at their optimum working hours.
Software engineering teams often work with clients around the world. This means that they have to concentrate on tasks even at non-business hours. Software engineers working remotely have the opportunity to complete their tasks efficiently by working in their peak productive zone. Achieving peak productivity can be difficult in an office with impromptu meetings, noisy colleagues, frequent breaks, and other distractions. On the other hand, remote software engineering teams are considered to be more productive since they increase outputs for the entire company.

Reduced Burden

Along with higher productivity, remote working teams are a serious advantage to many companies for reducing office maintenance costs. Working remotely trades the distraction of being at home or coffee shops for the distraction of noise or intrusions at an office, and once you consider giving up your commute it’s well worth it. Long commutes are necessary daily tasks for those professionals living in congested regions. They may be willing to extend their work hours in exchange for the greater convenience of working at home. In the majority of our country, a 40-hour office-based work-week may require being away from home for fifty or more hours. Removing that extra burden results in more productive hours.
Remote team members spend lesser effort in managing their personal lives and hence they can contribute in a much more immersive manner. This allows companies to plan and operate for more business hours. In “The Remote Manifesto” published by GitLab, there is a list of 8 principles for working remotely. The first principle says “Working remotely allows you to be there for the ones you love, and be more available for them”.

Useful Tools

In a co-located facility, you can call the team around for a meeting and steer everyone on track. In a remote team, you’ll need the right tools to make sure everyone stays on the same page and can continue to execute without a physical person standing next to them. Here are some tools that are handy as a growing team. While the exact tools aren’t super important, you likely need a useful tool in certain categories like group chat and video conferencing to make remote work successful.

1. Slack

Slack is a virtual office, which means – if you’re in Slack, then you’re at work. With group chat rooms teams can become great by creating camaraderie. Use Slack to brainstorm, ask each other questions, pass files back and forth, create polls, automate reports, compare notes, and much more. You can also use Slack as a virtual water cooler, meaning this is the place for your team to talk about anything, work-related or not.

2. Notion

Notion is an all-in-one workplace to write, plan, collaborate and get organized. Use it for building blocks of your ideas, plan and goals. It offers teams real-time collaborations by giving them the ability to share, comment, assign tasks and reminders. 

3. Toogl

Toogl is great for managing high-level team projects, which looks the same as an excel sheet but works in a much more detailed manner. This provides a team to make plans across an entire team, making it easy to see exactly what everyone is working on a given day.

4. Google Drive

Google Drive can be used as a depository of all content, which is collaborative, easily organized and instantly searchable. It’s one of the best tools used for managing content. And with Google behind it, there is a reasonable amount of confidence that your critical files aren’t lost.

Tips And Tricks

Here are some tips and tricks that are handy as a growing team.

1. Have Daily Check-In

Whenever possible, this should be one on one and face to face video calls. The purpose is simple, set the agenda, receive the team feedback and resource the members with what they need.

2. Communicate A Lot

To fulfil the agenda and receive productive outcomes it is essential for the team to communicate as much as possible, so the team is on track and rectifies if they deviate.

3. Take Advantage Of Technology

Making the utmost use of technology is essential in fulfilling the project team’s goals. It is the job of the manager to keep his team connected. Keep everyone engaged in the simplest of ways with communication tools. Tools like Slack or Notion are best suited for collaboration and communication, unlike text messages and emails.

4. Manage Expectations

Help your team understand what they should do, and collectively set realistic expectations for their work. Set up the team meetings clearly by stating all their tasks and the reasons behind them. Help them understand exactly how success is measured. Define scope, deadlines and deliverables for each task of the project that teams work on.

5. Track Work Output

Get transparency around work output. This will help the managers know which tasks and team members are productive. Share workflows, and define deliverables for each team member. Track output of each member and measure productivity as a team to get better results. 

6. Be Flexible

Understand that your team has a lot going on. That’s not an excuse for not getting things done, but it is a reason to reconsider what productivity is. Regular work hours are not the same for many people. Instead, trust your team and give them the freedom and flexibility to get work done on a schedule that helps them to be most productive. That’s good for the team in the long run.

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Surya Narayanan

Surya Narayanan

Director of marketing and growth at Talent500. Driving the mobile first approach. An out and out ideas person. Leads his conversations with science and reason. Mentor to many. Always curious, always smiling.

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