Technology to Help You Maintain Productivity During Remote Work


Money isn’t always our biggest motivator to be productive at work. For many of us, it’s a sense of accountability, which can be hard to replicate in remote work. But just because you and your team are working separately doesn’t mean that you have to work in silos. Technology can help your team learn to manage their time and responsibilities.

Don’t just drop new tech into your remote workflow. Carefully evaluate your needs and processes before adding new technology. “First determine the best fit for your needs,” says Ben Marcel, CEO at Torapath Technologies. “Then put the technology in place.”

Here’s how to use digital tools to stay accountable, motivated and productive from the comfort of your home office.

Manage Productivity with Timekeeping Software

A significant part of productivity is time management. Timesheets help you track your time spent on projects — and your employees’ time. “Moving to remote work can be a huge culture shock,” Marcel says. “The tendency is to increase micromanagement to ensure productivity is met.” Having employees track their time allows you to see how they are using their time while working remotely and can help you resist the urge to micromanage. “Timekeeping software allows you to track your team’s internal productivity,” Marcel says.

Look for timekeeping software that aligns with your use case. Do you need timesheets for internal use, billing purposes, or a combination of both? If your intent is to track internal time, then timesheets are great for helping your employees self-monitor and be intentional about how they spend their day. If your revenue is based on the amount of time spent working on a project, then look for timekeeping software that automates tracking billable hours. This makes your invoicing process more efficient.

There are several timesheet options on the market. Zendesk is popular for managing time spent on client and customer relations, while Harvest is easy to use and integrates with most existing software.

Set Calendar Boundaries with a Scheduling Service

Being productive requires dedicated blocks of time. You probably had a schedule optimized for productivity back at the office. Just because your “office” has changed doesn’t mean that you can’t replicate that routine. A calendar service like Calendly lets you take control of your day. “With being stuck at home and working all day, we have become too available,” Marcel says. A scheduling system allows you to block off time for dedicated periods of work or your regular lunch break.

Marcel uses his calendar to set time buffers between meetings so that he can take breaks to prepare. You can also limit the number of meetings you can take in a day. “By setting calendar boundaries, we can remain productive by having blocks of time to do work instead of being in back-to-back video calls and meetings,” Marcel says.

Maintain Contact Through Video Chat Technology

It can be very hard for your team to be productive if they don’t have daily check-ins with leadership. Communicating goals is vital to remote productivity. Video technology allows you to replicate daily meetings that would’ve happened in-person during the course of a regular workday. “Structured standing meetings are important for managing a team and their productivity,” Marcel says. Zoom, Microsoft Teams and Google Meet are great tools for achieving connection.

Scheduled, structured video calls can help your team stay engaged and offer accountability. But they can help recreate the camaraderie of the office, too, Marcel points out: “On Friday afternoons, we host a company happy hour to unwind before the weekend and play Pictionary using the whiteboard feature on Zoom.” Maintaining that connection is essential for remote employees.

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