What Is Remote Collaboration and How It Improves Teamwork
What was hyped during the COVID quarantine span has now become a part of our lives. Yup, you guessed it right, we are talking about remote collaboration! Where COVID has caused certain uncertainties and damages in different life sectors, it has blessed us with remote working opportunities. Now, we can skip the hassle of commuting miles and miles to our offices, collaborating with our teams via remote collaboration tools.
In this article, we will explore what remote collaboration means, why it’s important, and how you can ensure effective collaboration between your team members. So, what are you waiting for? Let’s begin!
Part 1. What to Know About Remote Collaboration?
Remote work collaboration means working as a team when not being physically present at a particular spot. This means that no matter what part of the world you are in, you can collaborate and work with your team members residing around the world, offering them flexibility. Remote workers use specialized remote working tools to collaborate, share thoughts, and coordinate efforts.
It comes with many benefits; all employees can work from the comfort of their homes, and they have flexible working hours, too. The best part is almost every company has digitalized itself to embrace the remote collaboration trend. As per the research, in 2023, 27% of U.S. employees work remotely, and 16% of U.S. companies have completely shifted to remote working.
You know what? These figures are foreseen to double and triple in the coming few years!
Part 2. Is Remote Collaboration Worthy?
Wondering if remote collaboration is important? Hear us shouting YES! Though certain reasons account for the compilation of answers to this query, the factor of utmost importance is that workers better balance their personal and professional lives.
Remote collaboration and remote working are inseparable. According to Forbes, remote workers were seen to be 7% more productive than their office-going buddies, and that's a significant figure, folks! But that's not all; the following benefits will help you further understand the importance of remote collaboration.
- When collaborating remotely, workers can come up with unique ideas, as remote work increases their productivity.
- You can avoid office politics.
- There’s no need to arrange a workspace.
- Remote working and collaboration can help you attract talented people and have them on board.
- You can enhance employees’ engagement, improving their communication skills.
Part 3. 5 Ways to Effectively Improve Remote Team Collaboration
On getting tempted by the utter importance of remote collaboration, you must have thought of improving it in your space. If that's the case, we have you covered with these five effective methods.
Method 1: Access Right Remote Collaboration Tools
Collaboration tools for remote teams are a must. These ensure everyone stays updated about the company's progress, upcoming tasks and meetings, and more. With the right tools in hand, you can ensure optimal remote collaboration.
Here are a few types of remote collaboration software and tools whose availability should be ensured. We have also mentioned the best collaboration tools for remote teams.
1. Video Conferencing
This remote collaboration software will help you arrange meetings to discuss progress, growth, and market trends, present project ideas, analyze designs, and even hold board meetings remotely. Some commonly used video conferencing tools that enable face-to-face interactions and screen sharing include Zoom, Microsoft Team's video conferencing, HubSpot Meetings, etc.
2. Document Collaboration Tools
Gone are the days when you have to send copies of important documents to every employee. During remote work, document collaboration tools are required to let everyone access and work on shared documents via a single platform. Authorities will upload documents on spaces like Google Workspace, Office 365, etc., and anyone with the same account logged into their device can access them from their device.
3. Team Chat Apps
Next comes team chat apps! These remote work collaboration tools allow workers to communicate, share ideas, provide updates, and mingle with each other when working on projects. Some important team chat apps include Microsoft Teams, Slack, etc. These tools allow integration with project collaboration tools to make things easier.
4. Online Project Collaboration Tools
From real-time collaboration to video conferencing, instant messaging, and more, online project collaboration tools offer a plethora of functionalities to increase productivity when remotely working on projects. A few examples of such tools include Trello, Asana, etc.
5. Remote Desktop & Support Software
These tools are required for collaboration, maintenance, and troubleshooting. Owing to them, you can connect remote computers using your computer controls when viewing their screen. This makes it much easier for IT team professionals to resolve certain issues and offer solutions from miles away.
Some common remote desktops and support software include Avica, TeamViewer, Anydesk, etc. Out of these, Avica Remote Desktop is the most reliable one to use because of its ultra-compatibility, end-to-end AES-256 encryption, intuitive user interface, and streaming protocol. With its 4K resolution and multi-monitor support, you can give your productivity that much needed boost!
Feel free to download Avica software by clicking the button below. If you're seeking additional information about Avica product downloads, you can visit the Avica download page. Rest assured, Avica guarantees the safety and virus-free nature of all products obtained from the official website or app store.
When looking for any of these tools, you should keep in mind the following few things:
- Your tools must have excellent compatibility.
- They should integrate with each other for convenient management.
- Opt for tools that offer dual functionalities, like Microsoft Teams, which can be used as a video-conferencing and team chat tool.
- They must have an easy-to-use interface so that everyone can become a pro in using it within no time.
Method 2: Establish a Team Knowledge Hub
One of the most important things for improving collaboration is to keep everything clear from the very first day. The newbies in your business should be taught well about your company's basic information. This includes everything from goals and aims to content calendars, team directories, roadmaps, annual growth reports, org charts, and more.
The best approach is to keep everything in document form. Instead of teaching them verbally over and over, it's better to guide them once and hand over a documented form of instructions and detailed guidelines for future reference.
Method 3: Set Communication Protocols for Effective Remote Team Collaboration
By setting communication protocols, you can ensure good communication between members. Ensure that the discussions related to business must be done in specific groups so that you can keep a check on everything and no data gets lost. This isn't enough, though; optimal communication demands sending monthly progress reports via mail, arranging week-based meetings, and calling urgent meetings for discussions whenever necessary.
When setting protocols, you should also consider choosing the right platform. For instance, information that needs to be shared urgently can be sent to specified groups on media chats. However, ensure that confidential documents must not be shared that way. You can rely on video conferencing to let the workers view them.
Also, when getting feedback, consider different strategies. If you need every individual's feedback to stay confidential, ask them to share it via mail; otherwise, you can use any feedback platform to let everyone share thoughts on one platform.
Method 4: Optimize Meeting for Maximum Productivity and Efficiency
Encouraging team members' engagement is a great challenge that remote collaboration imposes. By arranging meetings often, you can resolve this issue. You can call meetings weekly or monthly and ensure everyone’s presence in it.
However, when arranging a meeting, you should have a clear-cut agenda in your mind. You should not drag things longer, as workers will lose interest, nor will you discuss unimportant things that could have been better discussed on chat. In short, keep in mind that everyone has an individual workload to handle, and their time is precious. So, please clear out your concept about the discussion topic.
You can also make pre-notes for the meeting. If there is any important visual information that you want everyone to go through, share it beforehand, so everyone goes through it once. This way, you can save time, as you can better discuss the points and dedicate more time to listening to feedback and answering queries.
Another way to encourage engagement is to ask everyone to keep meeting notes and motivate them to share their point of view. According to research, introverts can better engage when working remotely, so it’s up to you how you help them in doing so.
Lastly, ensure to be cooperative. If anyone is missing important meetings due to valid reasons, you should record them. This way, you can win more hearts, motivating your workers to give their best for your business.
Method 5: Cultivate a Healthy Company Culture
Last but not least, cultivate a healthy company culture among your staff. Teach them the basic teamwork norms and ask them to stick to specific company policies. The very first step in maintaining a strong company culture is to stay clear about the company values. If you value trust, teamwork, and loyalty, show it with your actions.
For instance, whenever you find a team working productively with excellent collaboration among team members, encourage them and celebrate their success to promote teamwork. If you find anyone breaking the rule by prioritizing individual goals over that of their team, you should warn them. If someone is facing difficulty in collaboration, help them find solutions. All this will, in turn, increase your value as an employer.
Also, trust your employees, which empowers them to work passionately for the company. Let them share ideas, value their thoughts, and offer advice on certain issues to let them feel cared for, as this approach motivates them to give their best and take responsibility for their actions.
Conclusively, remote collaboration is a key to moving several steps towards success in one go. This is why more and more companies are tempted to shift their businesses completely online. With more productive and engaging individuals working remotely, you can also elevate your company's growth game.
That was all about what’s remote collaboration and how you can improve it with the right remote collaboration tools and a handful of other methods. Hope you find this info helpful. Stay tuned for more!