It’s no question that telecommuting is on the rise. The new road warriors, the digital nomads, are in coffee shops, libraries or simply working from their home offices, utilizing a plethora of digital devices and applications to stay connected and productive while on the go.
If you’re considering trying telecommuting for the first time or even if you’re a seasoned digital nomad, these five tools are essential for remote work success.
The Right Bag
It might seem silly, but when you consider that the average worker carries around 3 devices a piece, having a high-quality bag for all of your gadgets and accessories is one of the keys to a stress-free telecommuting experience. Take the time to dig for a work bag with all of the pockets, pouches and hiding places that you need for all of your cords, devices, notebooks and whatever else that you need to get your work done.
Extended or Backup Batteries
We’ve all been there — you walk into your favorite telecommuting spot only to have the panic set in as you realize all the power outlets are taken. If you’re a true digital nomad, you can’t worry about running out of juice in the middle of an important conference call or virtual meeting. Whether it’s for your laptop or smartphone, investing in a backup or extended battery can remove the worry that comes from a constantly draining device. I purchased an extended battery for my Galaxy S3 and I never have to worry about battery life when using my smartphone on-the-go!
One of the things that opponents of remote work often bring up is that telecommuters miss out on the spontaneous, serendipitous, face-to-face collaboration that working in the same place provides. Luckily, with the right web conferencing tool, you and your team can enjoy the benefits of face-to-face meetings from wherever you are. iMeet, for example, doesn’t require scheduled meetings or lengthy, complicated join methods with dial-in numbers and passcodes. A simple tap on your smartphone or iPad® and you can jump right into someone’s iMeet room for a face-to-face meeting over HD video.
There are three things that all digital nomads need for successful remote meetings: power, Wi-Fi and silence! Unfortunately, that last one is almost impossible to come by, but there are steps you can take to minimize the effects of background noise on your conference calls. A quality headset, such as my Plantronics® Voyager Legend, has powerful noise-reduction technologies in addition to features like voice commands and seamless Bluetooth connectivity to smartphones, tablets and laptops. I’ve taken calls in busy airport terminals and my guests didn’t even know I wasn’t in the office!
Surprise, surprise! If you’re working in an unfamiliar city or are simply looking for a new mobile-friendly telecommuting spot, the digital nomad community is the best source for information on Wi-Fi reliability, power availability and even noise levels. WorkSnug’s mobile apps provide all of this information from their location reviews at your fingertips, ensuring that you’ll never be stuck without a place to work!
Interested in more insights about the pros and cons of being a digital nomad? Download PGi’s free eBook, “The Yin + Yang of Telecommuting” to learn more!
Photo credit: Alan Levine