Things have changed very rapidly for a lot of people. Just a few months ago nobody would’ve imagined they would have to stay at home for a prolonged period of time, and even though warned, preparation for a global scale epidemic was pretty poor. Right now, when the spread of Covid-19 is at its peak, a lot of people have to get used to self-isolation, which means they can’t go to work to offices anymore but have to work remotely.
The tendency for remote work was also visible before the virus, but it surely has hastened its implementations. It has its upsides and downsides, but overall, remote work is rated positively. Some companies are reporting an increase in productivity and working hours, decrease in the amount of sick-leaves, and, naturally, the risk of infecting others with a disease of one kind or another has dropped significantly.
However, there’s one more thing that everyone has to take into consideration — a comfortable remote work environment. That is, you will have to install new software (if you don’t have it already) for making a group conference video call, use a mass chat platform, and on occasions secure remote access to companies private resources.
In this article, I have listed several useful software apps that will help overcome these challenges.
Slack is one of the most popular mass chat services out there and is very well-suited to remote work conditions. Slack allows creating channels for every topic as well as sending direct messages to every joined user. It’s a must for every business and to be honest, I think most companies are already using it due to it being very conventional. It has now removed a user cap for three months to all nonprofit organizations.
NordVPN Teams, launched by the popular NordVPN, is a business solution for small and corporate businesses. It allows users to connect easily with Google or Azure and is supported by all major operating systems.
Companies can set up custom gateways and assign specific servers. What is more, NordVPN Teams is now offering an exclusive offer to non-governmental organizations, which is very helpful during the pandemic.
Google is another company to step up its game. It’s one of the most often used apps when it comes to video calls and conferences. The company now made Hangouts Meet free to all customers who have G-Suite or are using it for educational purposes. This means that up to 250 people can have virtual meetings at the same time, which are now more needed than ever.
Zoom is an excellent alternative to Google Hangouts and videoconferencing. Only one person in the team needs to download the software, and that is it — everyone else can use a link. The company also removed a meeting limit to its free plan for students and teachers across America. It is now also removing time limits to countries impacted by the coronavirus.
Dropbox offers cloud collaboration and storage services, which is much needed when working remotely. I’d say it is one of the most crucial tools that help make file-sharing easy and also have everything in one place. Dropbox Business will be available for free for six months to nonprofit and non-governmental organizations that are battling against the virus.
A platform that is used to send newsletters and emails. It is one of the best-automated platforms currently offered to marketers — you can put custom tags, check the open rate of your emails and track even more crucial metrics. The company is now giving free accounts to nonprofits, schools and similar organizations, not to mention that free and basic plans can be upgraded with no cost.
Adobe is a huge company that has a variety of tools, mainly related to design and marketing. It’s a wide range of design software like Photoshop, InDesign and others are irreplaceable to most who work with graphics.
It currently allows students and teachers to access the Creative Cloud for free via a request. Also, Adobe has made a lot of its learning videos freely available, among other content, so that others can use it to study remotely.
There are more to choose from, but I picked the most popular and, in my opinion, most comfortable to use ones. It might seem easy, but every software needs a bit time to get used to, and right now, when everybody is stressed because of the extended quarantine, a comfortable app is more than welcome.
Also, all of these developers one way or another, are contributing to making this hard period a bit easier. By some scholars, the idea that societies will shift towards remote work is inevitable, and it might be useful to get used to it sooner than later.