Manage projects effectively and keep colleagues and clients in the loop with Toggl Plan, no matter where in the world you are.
Like any big change, transitioning to remote work is both fun and scary. Yes, it's cool to work from home in your pajamas. And sure, cancelling your commute can add an hour— or more— to your day. But how do you get work done when your main collaboration tools are whiteboards, in-person meetings, and casual gatherings at the water cooler? Plus, how do you make sure everyone's actually working?
Here at Toggl Plan, we started as a regular office-based company. But, in order to scale and hire the best talent, we transitioned to a fully remote company in 2015. We'll never go back to the office. Remote work has so many benefits for everyone, including:
- Better work-life balance for employees
- Increased employee retention
- Lower business overhead costs
- Lower absenteeism
Remote work gets a bad rap. Many people assume that remote work = no work. Not only is it not true, if you've set up the proper systems, productivity won't even be a concern. In our 5 years as a fully remote company, we've tried dozens of tools and techniques. If you're new to remote work, read on to get our tips (and skip the learning curve!).
Trust and transparency go hand-in-hand. When people are transparent about their priorities and projects, it's easy to trust that they'll get their work done. For us, transparency starts with the team timeline. Everyone on our team adds their projects to our Toggl Plan timeline. This ensures that we always know what everyone else on the team is working on.
Depending on your role, you might care less about who's doing what and care more about the progress of specific projects. In Toggl Plan, you can use the plan view to see the bird's-eye view of any project. A simple drag-and-drop interface makes it easy to rearrange tasks as plans change.
Good communication is essential for any business, but it's especially important for remote teams. Different communication channels should have different purposes. For example, we use Slack for internal communication and email for external communication. In Toggl Plan, we use checklists, comments, and tags to organize task-related communication. Keeping the task-related communication in one place means nothing gets lost.
To keep everyone on the same page, we rely on web-based tools that are always up to date. There's nothing worse than searching for a file called "Project-version-10-revised-final-finalfinal-for-real-FINAL." Actually, there is something worse— making critical decisions based on an out-of-date document. We'll pick Google docs over MS Word and Toggl Plan over Excel spreadsheets any day.
If you're just starting the transition to remote work, it can feel overwhelming. Our biggest piece of advice is to commit to it. Remote work, when done right, offers amazing perks for your business and your employees. The only way you'll fail is if you're only half-committed to remote work. Take the time to set up the proper processes and tools, and you'll be amazed at how quickly everyone will be working at full capacity.