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10 Free tools for remote working teams

remote working teams

With COVID-19 keeping everyone away from the office, the need for tools that accommodate remote teams continues to grow. Unfortunately, many companies are also having to keep their budgets small and can’t afford to invest in pricey software to meet their needs. Thankfully, there are several free tools out there that HR teams can use to make their jobs a bit easier. We share our top recommendations in this post. 

10 free tools for remote HR teams 

While there are many great options to choose from, we selected some of our favourite tools to make remote work easier for HR teams and employers. To help put them into action faster, we also shared ideas on how to use them for HR-related projects and initiatives below.

1. Asana

Asana is a task management platform that makes it easy to collaborate on projects with other team members. This is a great tool for remote work since it allows people to keep tasks organised, communicate with one another, and keep track of progress – all in one virtual workspace. Below are a few ways HR teams can use Asana:

  • Create a to-do list for new hires that they can check items off as they go
  • Manage ongoing projects with other members of the HR team
  • Document processes (i.e. for onboarding and offboarding) that managers and leaders can easily reference

2. Slack 

Communication is key – especially when it comes to remote work. Having a communication platform that can be used via desktop or mobile, such as Slack, makes the experience of working with decentralised teams much more seamless. Here are ideas on how HR teams can use Slack to their advantage: 

  • Create a Slack channel specifically for new hires
  • Regularly check in on employees to make sure everyone is feeling supported
  • Set up reminders for upcoming virtual webinars, events, or meetings

3. Flare HR 

At Flare, we offer multiple products that are free for companies to use – such as a remote onboarding software and an exclusive benefits and discount platform. These offerings can help streamline all your HR processes and provide a better overall experience for your employees. With Flare, you can: 

  • Add new employees quickly and integrate with your ATS  
  • Easily generate employment contracts and policy documents
  • Send new hires a link and have them enter information, sign contracts, upload certificates and more through a simple online interface
  • Give your workforce access to exclusive benefits and discounts with leading retailers like Woolworths, JB Hi-Fi, and Amazon

4. SurveyMonkey 

Surveys are an incredibly important tool for all HR teams to have at their disposal. If you don’t have the budget to afford a more comprehensive surveying platform, you can always use a free version of SurveyMonkey to create your own. Here are a few types of surveys you may want to consider distributing to your workforce: 

  • Employee engagement surveys
  • Pulse surveys
  • Onboarding and/or new hire surveys
  • Offboarding surveys
  • COVID-19-related surveys 

5. Donut 

When everyone is physically apart, it’s difficult to foster a sense of community. Donut is a great solution. This tool can help everyone – from people within your own team to other employees across the organisation – stay connected to one another by setting up virtual hangouts. Donut also integrates easily with Slack so you don’t have to download another platform to use it. There are lots of creative things you can do with this tool:   

  • Set up randomised “Donut dates” to encourage relationship building across teams
  • Assign new hires a buddy through Donut to help them ramp up and onboard faster
  • Create learning opportunities by connecting employees looking to learn new skills with experts inside your organisation using Donut 

6. Zoom 

Video calls are essential for remote work. This technology gives us that face-to-face time we need but otherwise wouldn’t be able to access outside the office. We love Zoom because it offers a free version that can host up to 100 participants and unlimited 1:1’s. They also offer an array of fun, virtual backgrounds to make meetings a bit more interesting. HR teams can use Zoom for multiple use cases, such as: 

  • Interviews with potential candidates 
  • Training sessions (such as a financial literacy workshop or DEI session) 
  • Company-wide meetings or celebrations 
  • Virtual events like happy hours or costume contests

7. Chimp or Champ 

Right now, employees are struggling with their wellbeing as a result of Covid-19. That means that it’s more important than ever to keep a finger on the pulse and check in with your workforce regularly. Chimp or Champ is a great tool that lets you send out an anonymous weekly employee happiness meter to see how everyone is doing. There are a few things you can do with the feedback you collect: 

  • Develop initiatives according to the happiness levels of employees
  • Create a monthly report to keep track of overall employee wellbeing (and make sure to share it with your leadership team so they’re aware too!) 

8. Dropbox

You likely work with lots of large documents in your job – such as contracts for new hires and legal documents for employees. Due to the file size, these documents are difficult to send through email. And we unfortunately don’t have the luxury of printing them out and handing directly to someone. In cases like this, Dropbox can be a huge help. It’s a platform where large files can be shared and downloaded. With this tool, you can: 

  • Create a shared folder for new hires that contains their contracts, forms, and other benefits information
  • Upload recordings of past trainings or webinars that all employees can easily access 

9. Loom 

One of the challenges with remote work is finding the right time to host meetings and events. Since everyone is working across different time zones and schedules, it’s challenging to find a time that’s convenient for everyone. Loom can help by letting you record presentations or announcements in advance. The tool then gives you a link so you can easily share the recording and let employees catch up when they have time. Here are a few other ways you can use Loom: 

  • Create videos that explain the onboarding and offboarding process
  • Pre-record training sessions so employees across all time zones can view it at their leisure
  • Have your CEO record messages or announcements to share with the organisation

10. Calendly

Being able to effectively schedule meetings is even more important in the remote world than it was in the office. Calendly is one of the best tools you can use to make the scheduling process a bit easier and more transparent. It integrates with popular calendar apps and shows people your availability so they can easily schedule a meeting or appointment with you. Some of the benefits of using Calendly includes:

  • Making scheduling easy for potential candidates who are interviewing
  • Simplifying the scheduling process across time zones
  • Reducing blockers to scheduling meetings for larger groups 

Using the right tools can make the remote working experience so much easier. Make sure to take advantage of the free ones we mentioned above to create a better work experience for yourself and a better HR experience for your employees. To learn more about Flare HR’s free onboarding software and employee benefits, request a demo.