Are you mulling over the possibility of untethering from a brick-and-mortar office space and instead setting up a virtual workplace where employees work remotely?
Today, remote working technologies such as online task managers make it possible for companies of all sizes, from many industries, and from just about anywhere around the globe to operate a virtual office. Close to 50% of American employees now perform their job responsibilities remotely at least part of the time, with 55% of remote workers saying they work remote full-time.
While these technologies make it possible to work anytime, anywhere, can they completely replace face-to-face interaction? Remote employees report the most substantial workplace engagement, but how do you sustain engagement, or increase teamwork and productivity, when you rarely meet in person?
Read on for a look, firstly, at the sorts of tools that make remote working possible and, secondly, at whether or not you can replace your office by using these technologies.
The Role of Online Task Managers
Online task managers are the foundation of remote work: tasks allow you to assign specific work to your team members, and track work that has been assigned and completed.
But task management alone can’t replace the office. You need a variety of technologies that keep your team on the same page. Video conferencing software is an essential technology to get in some facetime across distances, while messaging services help teams communicate in real-time during work hours.
Communication is the most essential, regardless of where they are, or what time zone they’re in. That means you also need a historical record of conversations, tasks, and documents that can be accessed at any time.
You can’t rely solely on email, either; the average worker has an average of around 200 unread or unopened emails sitting in their inbox. It can be all too easy for remote workers to feel left out of the loop if they’re not in every meeting on in every email chain, resulting in missed deadlines or lower morale.
Comprehensive Project Management
Project management platforms are more than just a collection of tasks. The best project management platforms incorporate multiple remote technologies into one interface: task management, communications (emails and chat), document management, calendars and scheduling, automation, etc.
These platforms give managers the ability to see the scope of work being conducted by remote workers, evaluate their performance, and identify areas where communication or efficiency can be improved.
Combining a comprehensive management system with effective channels of communication will ensure that projects and tasks are completed on time, and your remote team still feels like a real team, even without a brick-and-mortar office.
Can You Replace “The Office” Using New Technologies?
While a simple “yes” or “no” response would be great, the truth is that there are numerous factors that will determine whether you can replace your office using different tools.
The success of moving from a brick and mortar location to a virtual office will be heavily influenced by your corporate culture and the level of employee buy-in. However, using the right project management platform from the start can make that transition much smoother.
With Gryffin, your team can manage your projects, tasks, inboxes, workflows, and much more, all in one integrated platform. Gryffin is as customizable as it is comprehensive, which means it can adapt to the needs of any industry or organization, and evolve as you learn what makes your remote team work faster, smarter, and happier.
Whether your team is made up of a handful of people or dozens of people, Gryffin will make your dream to “go remote” a reality.