4 Must-Have Apps to Manage Remote Staff

4 Must-Have Apps to Manage Remote Staff

There’s no doubt how outsourcing has transformed a typical workday’s structure. Working in absence of face-to-face human interaction seemed almost impossible a few decades back, but remote working has been on a steep rise ever since. In fact, getting the work done outside your office premises has proven to increase the productivity and bring down the operational costs. But making the best of these benefits is not an easy road to walk. There are a lot of challenges (other than collaboration, discipline and communication) to overcome.

The practice to hire remote staff in India started in a much unorganized way and the transition was quite difficult, but the managers are slowly becoming proficient in leading their virtual teams. The environment of abundant pressure, uncertainty and dislocation makes the role of a manager much more complicated. And these days, because of the COVID-19 lockdowns, they are also expected to ensure the emotional wellbeing of their team members, apart from effective work management. The quarantine has made managing our own lives difficult, let alone managing virtual teams. Under such conditions, managers who made the smart choice of investing in apps to manage remote employees experienced more comfortable and confident.

As outsourcing has nothing to do with the regular in-house workplace culture, outsourcers feel left out of the process. They have to constantly rely on technology (latest mobile apps for managing remote work) for spearheading a virtual team. If you are planning to hire remote staff in India or already have a remote team working for you in the country, this blog might help you enhance your management style with the touch of technology. Here are the top 4 must-have apps to help you in the journey of making the required adjustment and becoming an efficient manager:

1. Serene

Free is always better, isn’t it? Serene is a free app, specially designed for Mac to improve your everyday productivity. Believing that multitasking can hamper productivity, it helps you set a daily goal and encourages you to accomplish it during the day (divided in 20 to 60 minute sessions). With this latest mobile app for managing remote work, you could remove distractions during your working hours by putting your phone on silent and blocking access to certain apps and websites.

This is how it could help you manage remote staff:

  • Blocking apps and websites that could steal attention of your remote employees during their shift time.
  • Putting their mobile phones on silent and enabling background music to help them focus on their work.
  • Maximising productivity by encouraging your remote staff to work in distraction-free, timed sessions.
  • Allocating right work to right remote employees and helping them manage their tasks.
  • Encouraging the habit of defining everyday tasks and ensuring their completion within time.

2.  Slack

Designed for Mac, iOS, Windows, Android and web, Slack is available in both free and paid versions. It’s basically an ideal communication tool for remote employees – a platform to send/receive messages to/from your team members. Rated as one of the best apps to manage remote employees, it features instant messaging channels that the team members can join/leave as per the project requirement. They can also use separate threads for personal interaction with their co-workers. Slack doesn’t only improve teamwork within office environment, but also improves work flow.

This is how it could help you manage remote staff:

  • Ensuring seamless collaboration between your remote employees with instant messaging.
  • Enabling inbuilt features like screen sharing and direct voice/video calling.
  • Facilitating quick work transfers through drag-and-drop file sharing feature.
  • Encouraging them to set availability statuses, so that they are not disturbed during urgent work.

3. Chrome Remote Desktop

One of the top apps to manage remote employees, Chrome Remote Desktop is a free tool for Android, iOS and Chrome Extension. It allows users to access their computers safely via a tablet, smartphone or another computer system. All you need to do is download the mobile app or enter an access URL into any web browser. Using Chrome Extension feature, the process of accessing your computer with portable devices could be made faster. This app is also useful for employees to connect with their fellow teammates.

This is how it could help you manage remote staff:

  • Empowering your remote workforce to safely access their systems from anywhere, anytime.
  • Providing remote support to your virtual employees to troubleshoot their issues.
  • Enabling your remote team members to share their screens for better collaboration, whenever required.

4.  Toggl

Only available in a paid version, Toggl is a time-tracking app, exclusively designed for Mac, iOS, Windows, Android, Firefox and Chrome. It helps employees to keep a track of time taken for every task that they’re accomplishing. Business owners planning to hire remote staff in India prefer to invest in this app as it helps them assess the time taken by their virtual employees to complete each and every task.

This is how it could help you manage remote staff:

  • Tracking task completion time of your remote employees to see if they’re underworked (assigning them more work accordingly).
  • Getting detailed reports to thoroughly check the productivity of your remote team members.


Usually, we’re all used to synchronous and standardized work, wherein we connect together in one office under same work schedules and conditions. But when you talk about managing a virtual team with social distancing, the first thing you need to do is reset your expectations about the entire process of workflow. Using the above-mentioned apps to manage remote employees, you could streamline your WFH (Work from Home) processes and remote teams significantly.

As the trend to hire remote staff in India is on a steep rise, the number of business owners/managers investing in these apps is increasing day-by-day. Most of the latest mobile apps for managing remote work are either absolutely free, or available in a limited-time free version. Even when the free version runs out, they do not involve heavy investments, thus doubling the merits of outsourcing for you and your business.


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