Communicating with remote freelancers can lead to missed phone calls and a full email inbox. With a long list of digital communication tools at your fingertips, there’s an easier way to crack through physical distance. Here are the best applications to collaborate with your freelancers from afar:
Last month, Asana underwent a major makeover. This collaboration tool transformed their visual identity, upending their old look for a fresh and quirky design that mirrors their core values. I’m a big fan of their software — as a freelancer, I can separate my work into different projects, tasks, and subtasks, while also viewing my work cohesively in one calendar. Asana makes it easy to invite freelancers to company projects, as well as assign and oversee projects. If you want to infuse your collaborations with a bit of play, turn on their flying unicorn hack!
Google’s applications work like magic because of their seamless integrations. You can talk face-to-face on a Google Hangout while you edit a Google Doc and send relevant links over Google Chat. A lot of freelancers already rely on Google to share information — its’ universality make it a no brainer for external projects.
Time magazine describes Trello as, “A web-based sticky note system that can be viewed by multiple users on desktops, tablets, and smartphones…” Not sold yet? Their visual formatting system makes tracking progress an intuitive rather than analytical process. As you move through each step, you shift the post-it notes into different columns until they pile up in a “completed” column.
Most people think of Slack as an intra-office tool, but it works just as well with external contractors. Slack’s an old-fashioned instant messaging tool rebooted for the modern workplace. It aspires to eradicate email with project-based chat rooms. Just in case you miss a conversation, Slack’s snazzy interface keeps track of each conversation. They make it easy search hashtags and keywords without fumbling through your email.
Mobilize is an emerging tool that connects companies to external networks. It helps you to communicate with groups of contractors through a single platform that incorporates targeted emails, polls, and files. Do you work with large groups of on-demand workers? Mobilize might be your best bet. Sign up for early access to check it out.
Collaboration not only requires clear communication, it also depends on effective processes. Evaluate your current payment system — is it too tedious for you and independent contractors? With painless payments, Payable can save you time and turn your independent contractors into loyal contributors.