5 Essential Home Office Tools for Remote Teams

by Gabriella Martin

As we’re heading towards the end of 2021, we can see more and more companies and teams around the world for which remote work is being established as the new normal. However, to make this shift a successful one, each business needs to find the right home office tools that allow them to improve productivity and collaboration among their employees.

Generally, home office software includes video conferencing and messaging apps, cloud storage services, project management solutions, and other productivity tools, all of which are seamlessly integrated into a team’s workflow to ensure effective communication regardless of a person’s location.

In this article, we’ve introduced our top 5 picks when it comes to home office tools so that, whether your company is preparing to shift to working from home or simply optimize collaboration across remote teams, you’ll be able to get a head start.

Best task and project management software: Allegra

Available on: Windows | MacOS | Linux | iOS | Android | Web

Anyone who has ever tried managing multiple remote teams and projects at the same time knows how incredibly challenging this task is.

A powerful project management tool like Allegra can help you effortlessly map tasks, projects, and portfolios in one place, set deadlines and milestones, allocate resources, and track progress from one stage to the next.

Allegra allows you to use interactive Gantt chart diagrams to visualize a project from the beginning until the final deadline, schedule tasks, and illustrate dependencies. Plus, you’ll get a quick overview of who’s working on what.

You can easily prevent your team from getting overloaded and get a better understanding of the availability level of your resources with Allegra’s resource planning capabilities.

Moreover, this tool combines features like native time tracking, base and personal calendars, Wiki documents, advanced access controls, report templates, and workflow automation to help remote teams achieve high-quality results in the smartest way possible.

Want to see how Allegra works? Start your 30-day free trial today.

Best team communication app: Slack

Available on: Windows | MacOS | Linux (beta) | iOS | Android | Web

Slack is one of the most widely used cloud-based messaging tools, which allows companies to organize information into specific channels and bring the right people together for enhanced collaboration for remote teams. The app lets you send instant messages and share documents with your team, supporting both real-time and asynchronous communication.

Slack’s free plan includes unlimited public and private channels, personalized notifications, up to 10 third-party integrations, and one-to-one voice and video calls. While it covers the basics, this plan limits your access to the message history so that you can only see the most recent 10,000 messages sent by your team.

On the other hand, the paid plans provide users with advanced security and data privacy features, group calls and screen sharing, unlimited integrations, and unrestricted access to the full message archive.

Overall, Slack is a powerful team communication tool that can be easily customized to fit into your work routine thanks to the numerous integrations available, including Google Drive, Gmail, Calendly, GitHub, and Zoom.

Best video conferencing tool: Zoom

Available on: Windows | MacOS | Linux | iOS | Android | Web

Undoubtedly the most popular video call app of last year, Zoom allows project teams to communicate face to face, share ideas, enjoy a virtual coffee break, and stay connected wherever they work.

The tool is easy to use and allows you to host and record unlimited high-quality video meetings of up to 40 minutes with a maximum of 100 participants for free. Moreover, participants can also share their screens and co-annotate for more interactive project discussions.

When it comes to security, Zooms provides several authentication methods, including SAML, Google Sign-in, Facebook Login, and password-based login for each account. Also, the app enables you to secure a meeting using AES-256 and end-to-end encryption and create invitation-only video conferences, which can be accessed only by the participants invited via email.

Other features included in the paid plans worth mentioning are the ability to create rooms for bigger group meetings, host live events and webinars, and access live transcriptions for whatever is discussed within your meetings.

Best document sharing and collaboration solution: Google Workspace

Available on: Windows | MacOS | iOS | Android | Web

Previously known as G Suite, Google Workspace is a collection of applications designed to help remote teams get things done quickly and efficiently.

These applications include the video conferencing tool Google Meet, Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides for collaborative file-sharing, Gmail and Google Chat for team and client communications, and the popular Google Drive for cloud storage services, among many others.

Google Workplace provides users with four paid plans you can test for free for 14 days before committing. Each plan offers features such as custom business emails, security and management controls, and 24/7 customer support.

Best password management tool: LastPass

Available on: Windows | MacOS | Linux | iOS | Android | Web

According to the Psychology of Passwords report, 44% of respondents admitted to reusing passwords or using a similar variation of the same password for their accounts, exposing themselves to the risk of a security breach.

Since working from home requires a rather large set of tools, a password manager such as LastPass allows you to secure all your login details in one place across multiple platforms. This tool makes it easier for you to create unique passwords and strengthen the security of all your accounts.

LastPass is simple to use and only requires you to log into your online accounts for the app to store your usernames and passwords. Once the login credentials are stored within your password vault, LastPass will automatically fill in the login details every time you authenticate within another tool or platform.

The paid plans for individuals include additional features such as automatic synchronization across multiple devices and dark web monitoring, which detects any suspicious activity on your accounts and notifies you if your data has been compromised on the dark web.

LastPass also comes with two Business plans that allow organizations to implement a centralized access and authentication solution for their employees.

Final thoughts

The biggest challenge when shifting to remote working is finding the home office tools that meet the needs of your team and allow you to maintain your company culture outside the office.

We hope the tools and apps presented above will help you collaborate more efficiently, stay productive, and build strong relationships while working remotely.

If you enjoyed this article, don’t forget to share it with your remote team and colleagues so that they can test these work-from-home tools for themselves.

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