Raise your hand if you enjoy sitting in traffic early in the morning or being squeezed into a streetcar. Of course, you don’t, but this is exactly what the typical worker face s five days a week. At clovio, we’re lucky enough to enjoy our comfortable home offices. However, we’ve had to develop a whole new mindset to effectively work remotely. For one, although no one expects us to follow a very strict work schedule, we have to be self-disciplined in managing our tasks, meeting deadlines, and publishing well-written and thoroughly edited content. To help us, we use a few applications to monitor our progress, manage our to-dos, communicate, and ensure the overall quality of our projects.
Managing Our Tasks and Tracking Working Hours
Online project management platforms are on the rise. This is a welcome relief since it’s hard to manage tasks with everyone working at different hours. We use Asana as our go-to solution, where we store every single project we’ve worked on since the company’s early days. It’s a handy application for creating projects, tasks, and subtasks. We have a workspace for each website we manage, different folders for content ideas, as well as separate spaces for all the different categories we create content for. Furthermore, assigning tasks and tagging each other when we need help with something is straightforward. This is also where we see if a deadline is coming up.
Hubstaff is our other partner-in-crime. First and foremost, the app tracks working hours. However, it also serves many other purposes. It’s linked to Asana, meaning that we can see our projects, tasks, and subtasks in the Hubstaff desktop app and allocate time to whatever we’re working on. We can also check how many hours we’ve worked that day or week if we open our online dashboard. When we’ve finished a task, we can check in Asana how much time we’ve spent on it. Moreover, the software takes screenshots as a safety measure in case we lose a file we’re working on and have to start over.
Communicating and Keeping Each Other Up-To-Date
Remote work is lonely, and loneliness tends to affect our creativity. To prevent feelings of isolation, we’ve developed some in-house habits to keep each other (and ourselves) entertained. We have monthly whole-team meetings, which are centered around small talk, and GIFs are our favorite tools to make coworkers laugh. Besides that, we enjoy just chit-chatting now and then by sending a quick message asking how the other is doing, what they got up to over the weekend, pizza toppings, music recommendations, and more.
While some of us can take advantage of our shiny new clovio studio, many clovions work remotely from further afield, so we all rely on Microsoft Teams for internal communication. This means that we rarely use the platform to ask about tasks, as we have Asana for that. The only work-related purpose we use Teams for is to have meetings, which are always organized in advance and are never impromptu.
Ensuring Quality With Content Creation Tools
As we all work on different stages of the content creation process, how much each program is used varies from person to person. For example, we work with Microsoft Word extensively. Writers create their content using this software, while editors use the track changes and commenting tools to provide feedback. Everyone can access any document at any time through our shared Microsoft OneDrive folders, so editors can immediately begin revising and rephrasing a writer’s – sometimes disorganized – trains of thought.
Our articles often contain images that must be edited. Personal preferences vary, but as a team, we take advantage of Canva to edit designs together – often simultaneously – and create shared folders for them. We can also rely on the software to fetch royalty-free clips and music for our YouTube videos.
It’s safe to say that we’d be at a disadvantage without our apps. At the same time, no software can rival an organized mindset. This means that no matter what we use to help us, everyone requires the necessary self-discipline to work to a deadline while avoiding burnout. There are many challenges involved in working remotely, but with the best apps at your disposal and a healthy working mentality, your team can thrive in a fully remote environment.