The Prime Minister announced the new lockdown measures on Monday evening, and said: “Though huge numbers are complying – and I thank you all – the time has now come for us all to do more. From this evening I must give the British people a very simple instruction – you must stay at home.” Simon Sinek recently posted on LinkedIn with the video title “Remember to check in with each other. Virtual doesn’t have to mean impersonal. #TogetherisBetter”. In light of our current situation this statement couldn’t be more true. As we all move forward with a new approach to working, we wanted to share some apps we love which a) help you stay organised and b) help you stay connected with your team, clients and suppliers.
Please note that all the tools below have a pretty decent free version!
1 – Loom
Loom is a video recording tool that helps you get your message across through instantly shareable videos.
Not good at writing procedures? With Loom, you can record your screen and talk through the steps while your mouse does the action. No need to write a lengthy procedure.
Remember virtual does not need to mean impersonal and how better to be personal than with a quick video to say hi! We can convey much more emotion and warmth through a recorded video which allows us to feel more connected to one another.
Why choose Loom?
- It’s easy to use
- There are no watermarks
- You can use Loom on a wide range of devices: Mac, Windows, Chromebooks, and iOS devices
- Loom allows you to record you and / or your screen with audio
- You can password protect videos or make them available only for certain email addresses
- There are no restrictions on how long you record for or how many videos you make / store
- You can download your video, embed it on your blog, or share it via a URL
- The free version allows you to record as many videos as you want so get cracking!
https://www.loom.com/use-cases/leadership – Here is a case study which shows how quick videos help you greatly improve communication and performance with your team
2 – Trello
Trello is a simple cloud-based project management app designed to help individuals and teams collaborate better and keep their projects organised.
You can build a workflow that works best for your team, in which items can be quickly and easily moved around based on their status.
On Trello you and your team can assign tasks (cards), add comments and attachments and post regular updates to each other improving communication and keeping connected with each other.
Why choose Trello?
- Its simple design minimises confusion around project assignments
- It’s easy to organise tasks and track progress
- Users can follow metrics they are most interested in
- The automations are great (limited in free version)
- Offers simple collaboration that allows entire teams to participate in important discussions
- Ability to send notes, share files and comment on individual tasks
- Supports uploads straight from Dropbox & Google Drive accounts
- The free version allows unlimited personal boards (up to 10 team boards), cards and lists
3 – Hootsuite
Hootsuite is an incredibly useful application for managing 1 or more social media network channels.
You can post updates, read responses, schedule messages, view statistics, and much more and it supports over thirty-five popular social networks, including:
- Facebook (including Profiles, Events, Groups, and Fan Pages)
- LinkedIn (including Profiles, Pages, and Groups)
- WordPress blogs
In response to the global economic impact of COVID-19, Hootsuite is offering free access to their Professional plan to help small businesses and nonprofits stay connected to their customers and audiences at no cost until July 1st, 2020. Plus, you’ll get access to a free library of social media training courses to help you engage with your audience, create content efficiently, and manage crisis communications.
Why choose Hootsuite?
- You can control the ability to assign tasks, add collaborators, and edit posts as you see fit
- You can all your social media posts in advance across all your platforms, saving you valuable time
- It is a web-based application, meaning there is no need to download anything onto your computer
- You can use it on mobile
- Great stats and analytics for your posts giving you a better insight to your marketing
- Supports a wide range of networks and Hootsuite keep adding new sites and tools
The free version allows up to 3 social media accounts and 30 posts a month
4 – Google G-Suite
Google’s G-Suite is a very impressive and comprehensive toolkit which uses cloud-based architecture that enables you to collaborate with anyone, anytime, anywhere in real time. G-Suite contains the following apps:
- Gmail & Calendar
- Google Docs
- Google Sheets
- Google Forms
- Google Slides
- Google Drive
Google allows multiple team members to access and work on the same document, spreadsheet and presentation at the same time. It also updates almost instantly so you can keep track of each other’s work.
Why choose G-Suite?
- Free, useful tools which consist of your core applications for work
- Great security on your documents with the ability to make your document public or invite only
- Instant updates when collaborating on the same document
- Drive speaks directly to apps with ease allowing you to easily store your work
- 15GB+ of Gmail storage
- Tools are updated with new features regularly
You can sign up for Google Docs, Slides, Sheets etc for free but the all encompassing G Suite starts from £4.60 p/month p/user
5 – Dropbox
Dropbox is one of several popular cloud storage services that enable you to store and share your files online “in the cloud.”
When you register for a Dropbox account, you automatically get 2 gigabytes (GB) of storage space. This is a good amount of storage space to start and there are free ways of increasing this like inviting others to join Dropbox with your link.
Over the years Dropbox has added a lot to their overall offering and has definitely became a more sophisticated tool than when we first started used this tool in 2012.
Why choose Dropbox?
- 300,000 supported 3rd party apps
- Creative viewing options and file showcase
- Supports file and version recovery
- You can clear files from lost or stolen devices to keep company files in the right hands
- Ability to transfer files easily from one user to another
- Its scalable and inexpensive
Dropbox is more than just secure file storage. It’s a smart workspace where teams, tools and content come together.
So give them a try! We hope this blog will be useful for many of you transitioning into remote working and wish everyone good health and great productivity over the coming weeks and months.
This has been Blog No.3! To keep up to date with our latest news and blogs visit www.optimul.co.uk and follow us facebook.com/optimul & linkedin.com/optimul