Working collaboratively (when working remotely from home)

Working from home

COVID-19 has sparked a global work-from-home social experiment as governments have enforced social distancing. Millions of employees have migrated from the office to the kitchen table; isolating themselves from not only the threat of the virus but also the convenience of collaborative working within the contemporary workspace. However, collaborative working is not a thing of the past; there is a whole host of tools and resources that ensure that working as a collective is as accessible as ever.

For a remote team to be successful they must be equipped to succeed. With the help of tools like Webex Teams and Slack, communicating becomes simple. Both WebEx Teams and Slack make group video calls foolproof so meetings can still take place. They have been developed specifically for collaborative working resulting in meetings being enhanced by numerous features; such as screen sharing.

These tools don’t have to be limited to teams; they could be implemented company-wide to promote a positive work culture. An 11 AM ‘coffee selfie’ posted by employees to the company-wide group can instil a sense of comradery when working at home. Creating a social chat can improve work relationships; encouraging better synergy between departments for a more flexible and responsive team.

It happens all too often when a simple task gets lost in a long, confusing email. Additionally, typing out responses to emails can be very time-consuming. The freedom of video calling alleviates this problem, by saving everyone the headache of decoding a string of emails. Video calling is a tool everyone can utilise. There is a long list of programs that can all provide great video calling experiences: Teams, Zoom, Hangouts and even FaceTime.

When you’re away from the office it can be easy to lose track of to-do lists. Task management tools such as Trello can be a great way of keeping on top of your workload. Shared Trello ‘boards’ can be an effective method of working collaboratively away from the office with the ability to comment and tag users within lists.

It doesn’t look like employees are going back into the office anytime soon, but with the  huge list of fantastic tools that are available for everyone to use – collaborative working might even improve!  Here at OE the majority of office staff have settled nicely into remote working and using digital collaboration tools.  Together, we have formed an online community that we never thought was possible; now we even have a possibly questionable OE playlist!

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