Remote work, just like its onsite equivalent, comes with its own set of wins and challenges.
"We should give people the freedom to work where they want, safe in the knowledge that they have, the drive and expertise to perform excellently, whether they [are] at their desk or in their kitchen. Yours truly has never worked out of an office and never will."
— Richard Branson, Founder of the Virgin Group
The 2021 Remote Project Management Report by Insightful says that the biggest remote work communication challenges are:
- Miscommunication or lack of communication (45.8 percent).
- Staying motivated (41 percent).
- Difficult to know what each person is working on (36.1 percent).
- Being in a different time zone than the rest of the team (26.9 percent).
- Hard to track progress (26.92 percent).
But all of these challenges can be easily tackled if you have the right remote team management software.
At Scribe, we've tried hundreds of remote team management tools and narrowed down our list to the best ones that keep your remote employees on track, streamline internal communication and encourage them to reach their highest productivity.
The best remote team management tools in 2023 are:
What is remote team management software?
Remote team management software is a set of tools designed to facilitate collaboration, communication and productivity among remote or distributed teams. This includes project management, time tracking, team messaging, video conferencing, file sharing and others that help teams stay organized and connected remotely.
Types of remote team management software
Managing a remote team can be quite challenging, especially if you want to continue business operations as usual and have your team members work in a way that makes them feel aligned toward the same goals.
This requires you to use tools that solve unique challenges and offer equally unique solutions.
There are various types of remote team management software available, some of which are:
- Project management software: This type of software helps team members manage projects by tracking tasks, deadlines and progress, leading to better communication and team collaboration.
- Communication software: Such software provides a central repository to exchange information like files, text, audio and video messages. This helps remote teams stay connected, even from a distance.
- Knowledge-sharing software: This software is designed to facilitate collaboration between team members. It lets them share and store files and information so they are not lost.
- HR software: This software helps HR leaders keep track of employees' data, payroll and other HR-related tasks.
- Performance management software: Managing productivity is the top challenge of working remotely. Performance management software helps managers track and evaluate team members' performance and measure productivity.
There are also software solutions that combine some or all of these features, providing a comprehensive remote team management solution.
Top remote team management software of 2023
Now that you know the benefits of using remote management software for your company. Up next, you will find the best remote team management tool that offers robust functionality and is worth every penny.
Best project management software
From tracking down deliverables to managing resources and streamlining collaboration with team members, there's a lot to consider when choosing a project management software. There are certain features that cannot be avoided, like task lists, progress charts, file-sharing, communication channels and reporting features.
Here are the top two project management tools for remote teams.
G2 rating: 4.4/5 stars
Capterra Rating: 4.5/5 stars
Trello is a simple, user-friendly project management software that lets you visualize any type of project, workflow or task tracking. Its interactive Kanban board view lets you create cards for each task and idea, add lists for different stages of tasks and a unique board that keeps similar tasks organized at a place. Remote teams widely use Trello to improve productivity and streamline project management.
G2 rating: 4.7/5 stars
Capterra Rating: 4.6/5 stars
Enterprise: You can contact the team for pricing
Monday.com is an ideal project management software for all remote teams. It eliminates the need for unnecessary email threads and meetings when planning projects. The platform offers 120+ project templates that let you execute tasks, projects and processes at scale. You can also expand the capabilities of your dashboard with Monday's custom views, widgets, automation and integration.
Team communication software
In a remote or hybrid setup, communication is everything. Your team members already have little to no contact and work in different time zones and on varying hours. There is no way you can mess this up. Remote communication software helps teams collaborate effectively through live chats, video calls and file sharing and collaboration features.
According to "The State of Remote Work" report, the most used communication tools are Microsoft Teams and Skype.
3. Microsoft Teams
G2 rating: 4.3/5 stars
Capterra Rating: 4.5/5 stars
Microsoft Teams Pricing:
Business basic: $6/user/month
Business Standard: $12.50/user/month
Microsoft Teams is the ultimate collaboration tool for remote teams. It is built on Microsoft 365 groups with the same enterprise-level security, compliance and manageability. Teams have all features you will ever need while communicating with your team, from video meetings and calls to messaging. You can easily find, share and edit files together in real time with your teammates.
G2 rating: 4.3/5 stars
Capterra Rating: 4.2/5 stars
Skype Pricing: Skype is a free app, but you purchase calling mins as per your location.
If you are looking for a smart video conferencing platform that lets you make HD video and audio calls through a range of devices like tablets, mobile, pc and Alexa, then Skype is what your team needs. Skype's biggest benefit is that it's completely free, which is excellent for small businesses looking to cut extra costs. On top of it, Skype has all the features you will want in your remote communication tool stack.
A knowledge base is an organization's biggest asset. A finely-tuned knowledge management system makes collecting, organizing and accessing information easy.
The best features to look for in a knowledge management system are advanced search functionality, collaboration capabilities, version control, branding and customization and integration with third-party tools. Here are the top picks.
G2 rating: 4.9/5 stars
Capterra Rating: 4.9/5 stars
Scribe Pricing: Available for free
Scribe is a powerful AI-powered knowledge management and process documentation tool. It lets you transfer knowledge effectively without boring your readers. You can turn any process into step-by-step guides, like how-tos, tutorials, product instruction manuals, or training content.
Here's a Scribe in action.
One of the key features of Scribe is its ability to integrate any tool and create a centralized knowledge base. You can share your knowledge with external team members, clients and customers, so they can easily visualize and mimic the process themselves.
Great documentation doesn't have to take hours. Create visual, strategic guides in seconds, saving your organization hours and boosting team productivity.
G2 rating: 4.7/5 stars
Capterra Rating: 4.7/5 stars
- Basic: Free
- Standard: $149
- Professional: $299
- Business: $399
- Enterprise: $599
Document360 allows you to instantly create an internal knowledge base for your customers and employees. You can easily build product help docs, tutorials, online user guides, FAQs, SOPs and private documentation for employees. Document360 offers an array of integrations (like Drift, Intercom, Freshchat and more) and extensions (like Slack, Microsoft Teams, Slack, Zapier and more). In addition, it offers version control, localization, custom branding and every other feature you will need to create an excellent knowledge base.
With remote work setting in, keeping employee information has become challenging. HR leaders need help with recruiting and hiring, evaluation, retention, payroll management, etc. This makes it crucial for HRs to integrate dedicated software to manage information efficiently.
Here are the top two HR software that has everything you need-
G2 rating: 4.2/5 stars
Capterra Rating: 4.1/5 stars
Paychex Pricing: You can request the pricing from the team
Paychex is a scalable HR software that works best for remote teams. It offers daily client onboarding support, time and attendance scheduling, employee benefits and automated employee and tax payments. HR teams can seamlessly operate on various processes, from recruiting to employee benefits. Paychex provides excellent customer support 24/7 from experienced professionals.
G2 rating: 4.8/5 stars
Capterra Rating: 4.9/5 stars
You can request the pricing from the team
If you're looking for a dedicated, easy-to-use HR platform for onboarding, offboarding and employee changes, then Rippling is what you need. Rippling offers extensive features for each step of the onboarding process, including e-verify, offer letters, payroll setup and employee benefits. HR leaders can automate training work by delivering the right courses at the right time with intelligent course management. Rippling should be your one-stop destination for all your HR needs.
Performance tracking can seem like a herculean task for managers working remotely. Since they cannot directly observe employees' work activities, performance management software comes to the rescue. The performance tracking tool allows employees and managers to set and track performance goals individually and for the team. It simplifies the employee review process and lets managers get a bird's view of how the team is performing.
The best performance tracking tools that you should opt for are:
G2 rating: 4.7/5 stars
Capterra Rating: 4.8/5 stars
Enterprise: You can request the pricing from the team
PerformYard is an easy-to-use corporate performance management software that manages feedback, reviews and goals. It incorporates feedback from across the organization, including clients and other stakeholders, to facilitate a 360-degree employee review. Managers can determine individual and team goals and see their yearly progress. All this data is visually depicted on charts for managers to assess goal progression, find trends and identify future leaders.
G2 rating: 4.6/5 stars
Capterra Rating: 4.4/5 stars
It starts at $159/user/month for a 3-month minimum
Primalogik is a cloud-based performance-tracking solution to help managers assess employee performance and development. Its key features are goal tracking, performance appraisals, 360-degree feedback and engagement survey. One of the key features of Primalogik is creating an unlimited number of questions to collect straightforward and transparent feedback. With its advanced reporting features, managers can get more in-depth insights into employees' performance and task completion.
Why do you need remote team management software?
In just a few years, remote work has taken a big shift, and more organizations have started to adopt it. Buffer's latest report shows that 72 percent of companies are permanently planning to allow some remote work in 2022, compared to 46 percent in 2021.
But that doesn't defy the challenges team leaders face managing a remote team.
And that's where remote team management software comes into play. It helps team leaders overcome those challenges and help companies transition to remote work smoothly. Some of them are-
1. Managing communication between the whole team
Lack of communication is the biggest challenge when managing remote teams.
You cannot just walk up to your employees and ask them what they are working on or have any casual conversations. This leads to employees feeling disengaged and less connected to their coworkers.
Team leaders can easily overcome this challenge by adopting an internal team communication tool and creating different channels where employees can exchange information and connect with their teammates.
2. Creating a single source of truth
Every organization has at least hundreds, if not thousands, of documents of data continuously created, shared and stored. Managing it all gets pretty challenging.
Thus, a knowledge-sharing tool ensures that your learning hasn't been lost over the years as new members join. Your documentation includes easy-to-access guides, templates and documents your team members can follow.
3. Tracking your team's productivity and work
Team leaders are used to occasionally hovering over an employee's desk to understand what tasks they are working on and their overall progress, or evaluate if things are going as planned. This isn't possible if your teammates are working from home.
Performance tracking tools are the best way to measure employee performance and productivity. You can set and track individual goals, identify areas of improvement and provide insights on employee productivity trends over time.
4. Streamlining the onboarding process
A recent Slack report shows that new remote workers find it challenging to communicate and find information at work. The HR's job is to ensure that employees are equipped with the right resources, introduced to the right people and adapt to the company's culture as seamlessly as possible.
Remote team management software does all this for you; it streamlines onboarding, provides a centralized space for communication and access to important documents and ensures that employees follow company guidelines.
Choose the remote team management software your organization needs!
As remote work becomes more prevalent, the demand for remote team management software increases. From communication and project management to performance tracking and knowledge sharing, there is a tool for everything.
When choosing software, create a list of features you are looking for and the money you are willing to pay. This will help you filter software easily and you don't have to waste your time trying something your team doesn't need.
Based on our review, the tools mentioned are the best software you will find in the market, with top-notch features, customer support and reasonable pricing.