Top 17 Online Team Management Tools
The past few weeks have seen hundreds of businesses take the work-from-home route to keep their operations up and running – and rightly so. With lockdowns in place and self-isolation being preached left, right, and center, there aren’t too many other options. In these trying times, without a team management tool or MANY, there would be complete and utter chaos.
You are a small business owner with 15 employees, the manager of a multinational with tens of teams working under you, or something in between. The COVID-19 pandemic has forced everyone to stay indoors, hence home is where the business operations are to be run from.
Wait, you don’t need to picture it – if you landed on this page, you are likely in one of these situations. And you have no idea how long it is going to last.
If you’ve never managed a team remotely before, we don’t blame you for feeling a bit stuck.
But, we’re here to tell you that you do not need to worry at all – with the perfect team management tool by your side, you can turn the situation around and make it work in your favor.
And we’re going to give you a list of the best software to choose from to do that.
But before that:
Here’s an important question: how exactly do you choose an online team management software that is perfect for your needs?
Even from within this list, how do you which one is right for you?
Well, here are just some features you need to look out for so that you make the right choice:
Picking the Right Team Management Tool
Ease of Use
You need to keep in mind that not everyone on your team is tech-savvy.
While this seems hard to believe in this age of the internet, there are still many people, especially the boomers among us, who only open up their laptop to type up that report or Skype with their grandchild.
For everyone working remotely, the team management tool must be easy to find (yes, FIND!), install, understand, and use.
If you spend half your time trying to teach members how to use the tool, you might as well do the work yourself.
So remember, ease of use comes first.
Project/Task Tracking and Management
This is an essential component of managing a team.
You can’t possibly keep track of all the tasks you assign to your team members, as well as the details of each job and its deadline, manually.
That is where a work-from-home management tool comes into the picture. From planning and scheduling tasks to assigning them, allowing team members to collaborate efficiently, tracking deadlines and progress, sharing files, and much much more, you need to do it all.
And what better way to manage everything than from a single place?
That is just what a top online team management software allows you to do.
Attendance and Time Tracking
Most offices nowadays have a clock in and clock out system.
Things don’t have to be much different when your team is working remotely. A team management tool takes care of that for you.
Or it should anyway. You definitely need a way to keep track of attendance, and the top team management tools often allow you to do that.
No matter what niche you operate in or who your clients and customers, you must deal with some data that is sensitive in nature.
And you cannot afford to let it get into the wrong hands. The protection of your data and systems takes top precedence.
Whether it is employee passwords, customer data, or anything else under the sun, it needs to be secure.
It is essential that you look into the security offerings of the tool you are considering. Some things to look at are:
- Where the company stores your data
- What procedures are being used for network protection
- How unauthorized personnel are prevented from accessing the software
- Whether permissions can be assigned or withheld within the team
- And so on
We found a resource that outlines five areas of security you should look at when selecting a tool: physical security, network and system security, application security, privacy, and compliance. Give it a read here – it is highly informative:
Having the entire team in one place in the office is easy – you call a meeting and 10 minutes later, everyone is in the same room and on the same page.
Things can get a little more complicated when this had to be done online.
One-on-one communication is one thing – you assign tasks to a team member, they get in touch with you with any concerns, you explain, all is good.
But what happens when, say, a project manager, a writer, and editor, and a graphic designer, and video animator, and a voiceover artist need to collaborate on a project?
You need a tool where they can all communicate in the same group, chat or video call so there is no back and forth.
You, thus, need to make sure that the online team management tool you go for makes it easy for your teams to collaborate and get work done.
There are two aspects to this: internal and external.
The first is self-explanatory – the team management tool should allow your employees to easily share data, resources, and documents with each other. This is a major plus.
But that’s not all!
The tool should also allow you to give easy access to data and resources outside of the office – that is, to external stakeholders.
Whether it is spreadsheets with crucial data figures, media products that need your client’s feedback, or anything in between, there should be an option for easy sharing.
Do note that this won’t always be possible in your core team management tool – but you can opt for a separate tool for this purpose.
Now we come to the fun part:
Top 17 Online Team Management Tools that Are All the Rage
Let’s go through some of the best online team management tools that are available today that can fulfill your needs.
We have discussed tools in each of the categories we just discussed, as well as some additional ones.
Project and task tracking/management
Proofhub – This all-round project management tool is all you need to plan, collaborate on, organize, and deliver your projects. From customer workflows and tasks to calendars, a documents hub, discussions boards, chats, timesheets, and progress reports, you have it all and more. Cherry on top: You can integrate it with apps you already you use.
Basecamp – Basecamp is another all-in-one team management tool that allows you to take charge of your projects and handle them – and your team – from one place. You can use it to easily schedule tasks, communicate with your team via individual chat or collaborative message boards, track progress using to-do lists, stay on top of attendance, and share files among many other things.
Asana – Asana lets you keep on top of projects by assigning tasks to team members and tracking them easily. You can also create seamless workflows so that tasks move from one person to the next until they are complete. Communication boards, calendars, file sharing chats, and many other features help you stay on top of your game.
Trello – The main feature of Trello is the boards it lets you create so that you can manage your projects effectively. With this simple tool, you can collaborate with different members of the team and actively track due dates and progress, as well as organize your workflows in way that results in productivity across the board (no pun intended).
Canva for Work – You may have heard of Canva – it is a design tool that is a favorite for designers and digital marketers. Canva for Work, or Canva Pro, lets you design photos, upload and store pictures, and access a library of around 400,000 free templates, photo, and illustrations.
Communication and Collaboration
Slack – Slack, as the company puts it themselves, is “where work happens.” A collaborative online team management tool that lets you communicate with and manage a remote team, it helps you boost productivity like never before. From attendance tracking to individual chats, collaborative channels for different teams and projects among other things, file sharing, and the option to communicate with external clients, you have it all.
Quip – An amazing tool for internal documentation when it comes to work-from-home management, quip lets your team create and work on documents together so the relevant parties are always on the same page – literally! And this collaboration happens in a safe and secure way so you have nothing to worry about.
Zoom – Another great work-from-home management tool to stay in touch with your employees is Zoom. Not only can you have audio and video meetings with your teammates using the tool and share files, you can also book conference rooms and have webinars that can be viewed by up to 10,000 people. It also lets you have video meetings with up to 1000 participants.
Skype – Who hasn’t heard of Skype – before WhatsApp, Facetime, and other similar apps, it was the most common app for video calling and communication. But you can also use Skype to communicate with your teammates via chat, audio calls, and video calls. The best part? You can have online video meetings with up to 50 employees at one time.
GoToMeeting – Similar to Zoom, GoToMeeting allows you to have one-on-one meetings with your employees and have groups discussions while also letting you host webinar sessions for a wider audience. With the options to record meetings, get performance reports, have meetings on the go, and share screens among other things, you have your meeting needs covered with this tool.
Attendance and Time Tracking
When I Work – This employee scheduling software lets you build schedules for your team, share them, and track the progress being made in real time. It also aids in the recruitment process, just in case you want to expand your team. Track attendance, time, and productivity with ease.
Paymo – This software facilitates you in a number of tasks: task management, time tracking, timesheet reporting, team scheduling, invoicing, and integrations. So from scheduling tasks to tracking time, creating reports, managing attendance, creating invoices for clients and tracking expenses, take charge of the productivity of your team.
Hubstaff – In addition to the usual features of task management and scheduling, reporting, time tracking, invoicing, and managing payroll to name some, this online team managament tool also offers GPS tracking. In other words, you can know where your team members are during the work day, as well as allowing them to clock in and out with ease.
Google Drive – If not for anything else, you have surely used Google Drive to share those heavy pictures that just couldn’t be shared through email. Well, the tool can be used to share files with team members, as well as with clients for approval. Google Docs can also be used to collaborate on certain documents. You can store your files in Google Drive and access them from anywhere, at any time.
Dropbox – Similar to Google Docs, Dropbox can be used to share and access files with ease. It is perfect when dealing with a work-from-home management situation as team members can easily share files with each other instead of having to use email.
Meldium – With Meldium, your teammates don’t need to type in usernames and passwords every time they sign in to their websites or apps. This gives you a level of security against hackers and other cybercriminals who may have malicious intentions, while also saving you from having to share passwords with every member of the team.
1Password – This tool is similar in functionality to Meldium. Instead of having to remember dozens of credentials for all the software, tools, and apps used by the company, your employees can just sign in automatically with 1Password. This adds a much-needed layer of safety to your online operations.
Employee Rewards tool
WooBoard – Times are uncertain nowadays, and working from home in a massive change for your employees – they could use a morale boost once in a while. WooBoard is a rewards platform where you can recognize your employees’ hard work and accomplishments, allowing them to celebrate their wins and work even harder to achieve more.
Making the Final Decision – Which Team Management Tool to Choose?
The short story:
Outline your needs, match them with the specifications offered by your shortlisted work-from-home management tools, and choose the software that best meets your requirements.
There only is a short story because you don’t need to make it more complicated than it should be.
A word of advice:
Try to go for a tool that gives you an all-in-one solution. If you’re new to managing a team remotely, a team management tool for each requirement can overwhelm you. Analyze your needs and choose an online team management software that best meets all or most of them.
A tool like ProofHub or BaseCamp may just do the trick!
If you are still looking for more guidance, check out this blog post.
If not, get choosing. Best of luck!