I got 99 problems but tech ain’t one!
The rise and rise of digital nomads in the workplace
It’s after a multi-hundred years of working as employees, employers and middle men, that the world is finally coming out of the bubble we casually call the 9–5.
Over the last decade I’ve noticed a huge spike in the number of people opting for change and choosing remote work over office work. In 2015, 23% of employees reported working remotely according to the Bureau of Labour Statistics. Earlier this year the World Economic Forum reported that 39% of people reported working remotely at some point, and have cited this new trend as one of the biggest transformational changes to happen in the workplace. And I’m not surprised.
The truth is undeniable: We’re a generation of digital nomads.
Forbes has also reported on the top 100 companies that allow you to work from home. With big names like Amazon, Xerox, Dell and American Express backing up the trend, the attraction of remote work is not going to go away.
One of the key reasons for the uptake and acceptance of digital nomads?
Technology has been crucial in helping promote the life of a digital nomad as a sustainable one. Tech enables the life of a remote worker, and will also enhance it in future. A freelancer needs his tech tools as his side ally.
As someone who’s flying from one part of the world to another while stealing some time to work, I have to anticipate unexpected adventures. I also need tools that are less clunky and more capable of seamlessly integrating.
So, what tech tools are there exactly that help make my life easier as a digital nomad?
The right laptop
First and foremost, before you even start to get into the nitty gritty of software, you need the right physical tools.
This one really depends on what type of work you’re doing, so make sure you research and invest in the right laptop that works for you and what you need to be able to deliver.
For me, a long battery life is crucial for remote working and travelling. Along with being lightweight, and highly compatible with travel.
The best support tools
Once you’ve got the right laptop in your hands, you’re going to need the right support tools.
This includes things like a wireless mouse, USB adaptors, and USB battery packs. Being charged and ready to work, anywhere, at any moment is so important for me. Making sure I’m prepared and able to charge my devices no matter is key to this.
Project management tools
Trello is a collaboration tool that organizes your projects into ‘boards’ — you can color code, assign boards to team members, and allow editing by different team members. It’s the perfect project management tool! In one glance, Trello lets me see what’s being worked on, who’s working on what project, and where something is in a process. Full notification capacity allows me to follow up and address individuals to keep everyone on track.
Online storage tools
Let’s face it, paper filing has been dead for a long time and thank goodness! Better for the planet, and much better for your team. Online storage facilities, like Dropbox and Google Docs means teams can share, review, edit, download and collaborate on documents anywhere in the world, any time, any day!
The virtual helpdesk
Web-based help-desk services such as Zendesk allow me to keep track of all my customer service queries via an online system of tickets. Customers can submit their tickets to you through whichever medium works best for them including telephone, email, online chat, email or social media! Your entire team can have access and have the capacity to add notes as they go, so everything is up-to-date and streamlined to support your business and more importantly the customer.
The best focus tools
Working remotely, it’s easy to get distracted. Especially when I’m spending a lot of my time on my laptop!
This is where software like StayFocused comes in handy. With StayFocused, you can block distracting websites and social media for set periods of time. Just what I need when I’ve got deadlines to smash out!
The all encompassing communication & collaboration tool
Like Flock. With nifty apps like shared to-dos, polls, rich note and code sharing Flock is the ultimate tech tool for digital nomad teams. It’s a diverse platform of apps for all teams, and better yet it syncs seamlessly on all devices. Flock delivers a much lighter and comfortable UI to help navigate faster and get work done. Video and audio calling capabilities allow you to connect with your team from any part of the world.
With so many new advancements in the world of tech, it is only fair the whole workforce enjoys the benefits. Working remotely has eliminated the apprehensions of the ‘presence paradox’.
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