I want to tell you about the apps we use. Those that allow us to work the way we want and need to work.
Foursevens believes in the need for proximity. When working on projects, we request room at the customers offices to work. Our teams are therefore working ‘remotely’ at all times. (except once a month for work-together-day of course). I am the only one working regularly from our office. And I am on the move at least half the time. But it is very important for us to work as a team, to share information, to learn from each other.
Working together apart
The app that has no doubt improved our working lives more than any other has been Slack. We’ve been using Slack for a year now and it has replaced 90% of our internal email, if not more. We have a very simple setup, a few project related channels, one channel for sharing what you’re working on that day and one for non-work-related things you want to share. Slack in combination with work-together-day keeps our team in touch, makes it very easy and appealing to share experiences and ask a colleague for help or advice. Even though we sometimes don’t see each other in one month.
I have a lot of meetings and used to drive around from one meeting to another. First I started geographically clustering my meetings to avoid excess travel time. But I was still spending a lot of time driving. I now, very often, use Google Hangout. Not only for meetings with colleagues but also with customers and partners. With each meeting request I start and each meeting request I receive the first question I ask myself is: Can we do this over Hangout? With the arrival of a Chromebox for Meetings in our office, there really is no simpler way. In combination with a big screen it is nearly as good as sitting around the same table.
We have been using Dropbox but I have to admit we are about to migrate to Google Drive. Dropbox has done an excellent job for years, but we are moving out because Foursevens has recently become a Google Apps customer. Can’t say if it will work for us yet. I can only say Dropbox is a life saver. We have it running on all our devices, and at Foursevens that means at least 3 devices per person.
The people at Cloudwards have written a comprehensive article on Google Drive which we’re happy to share in case you want to find out more: How to upload to Google Drive.
More apps and cloud solutions
Code is stored in Github
Project tracking is done in Jira
Prototypes are built in either proto.io or justinmind.com
Ideas and blog posts are written in Evernote
Meeting notes are handwritten in Noteshelf
And of course we have a sales pipeline tool: Pipedrive!
These are the cloud-based tools and apps that allow our team to collaborate and be in touch whenever and wherever we need to be. There’s no excuse left not to create a collection of tools that work for your organisation. And if you want to know more about our own experiences, come and visit us for a talk and a cup of tea!