2020 came and threw us curve ball after curve ball, but we all adapted to a life online, a life where our commutes went from hours to minutes. Back in March 2020, the novelty of working from home full-time wore off quite quickly towards the end of 2020 and most craved that human interaction and to get back to the office.
However, as we head into 2021, it looks as though working from home might be here to stay for now. So how can we maintain positivity as well as continued productivity?
Here are a few tools that we have been using over the course of 2020 and how they have helped us become a closer team even though we are spread out across the UK & abroad
We tried many platforms from Google hangouts, to Facebook Workplace, even WhatsApp, none seemed to provide that collaboration that being in person provides. Slack has provided our team with the opportunity to collaborate on projects as well as provide input into tasks in a seamless way.
We have dedicated channels for projects, campaigns, divisions and we are working more collaboratively than ever before!
Even though we are apart, we are working together and becoming more of a team in the digital space.
Trello is one tool that I have been using for over 5 years, it is one tool that I can put all my personal tasks in and shuffle them around the board to provide a personal project management overview.
As a team we are using it to provide an overview of what projects are being worked on – at what stage it is at and if it is going to meet its deadline. This also integrates with Slack so we can get notifications when someone has tagged us in a task or when a task is due.
Similar to Trello, JIRA is another project management tool that allows us to create tickets for our developers and designers so we can ensure that work for development gets funneled into their workflow and deadlines are met.
Again, this integrates seamlessly into Slack so we are all aware of tickets created and job codes so we can work together to meet deadlines
2020 saw the rise of online meeting tool Zoom in both a personal and professional capacity. We use Zoom for our weekly catch ups, as it allows us to be together and talk things out rather than just relying on email.
This way we know what each of us is working on and if anyone needs help with some tasks that are bogging them down.
5. Microsoft 365
We recently moved from G-Suite to Microsoft 365 and it has provided endless collaboration in terms of document management & feedback, (it also integrates with Slack!!).
Using OneDrive and uploading documents direct from desktop to OneDrive to allow for real-time collaboration with teammates has been a lifesaver instead of emailing documents and then trying to find the right version. (We were also not affected by the recent Google Downtime)
Microsoft 365 prides itself as a collaboration tool for the online world, providing both an online and offline solution which makes it a versatile tool for working from home in 2021.
If you work serving clients and need to monitor hours, Clockify is a great tool to track hours for multiple clients and projects. There are also extensions for Chrome and iMac so you can track your hours straight from a browser or desktop which makes it easier to log times on a daily basis.
For quick and simple graphics, and GIFs we use Canva (our main graphics are created using Creative Cloud). The simple to use design tool helps us create quick graphics which can be shared directly from the platform via social or email for feedback.
These are just a few of our tools that we utilise to maintain a productive workday whilst we work at home. What are you go to tools? We would love to hear your thoughts on how you use them to be productive whilst working from home.