Tele-commuting, running a business from a home office, working online while traveling - remote work is an ever-growing trend in our increasingly digital world. By 2020, mobile workers are expected to account for nearly three quarters of the U.S. workforce.
If you're dipping your toes in the world of remote work, these five tools will help you work from just about anywhere that has internet.
1. Cloud Storage
'Cloud storage' is a way of storing documents and files on remote servers. This way, you - and others you work with - can access your work from many different locations, using the internet. Choosing a storage system that works for your particular needs is an important thing to have in place so you can work from anywhere.
Dropbox, Google Drive, and OneDrive each offer cloud storage solutions - this article shares the pros and cons of each.
2. Headphones and focus music
When you're working outside the office, you may find yourself in environments with different noises or distractions. Choose a good set of noise-cancelling headphones and background music to help you focus. Many focus music soundtracks can be found for free on Youtube.
This can help your productivity regardless of whether you're working from a coffee shop, an airport lounge, or when there's construction next to your home office.
3. Zoom Video Chat
Online video chat programs allow you to have meetings with colleagues or book consultations with your clients from anywhere in the world. Zoom is one of the most stable, easy to use video chat platforms that's great for work purposes.
A Zoom free account gives you unlimited one-on-one video calls and calls up to 40 minute for groups of 3 or more. Pro plans allow you to host longer chats, including webinar-style where you can share your screen, mute all participants except the host, generate Q&A via text chat, schedule future video call reminders, and more.
4. Laptop and laptop bag
Work that can be done anywhere typically involves internet and a laptop - or some other portable device. With such an important tool for your work, it's important to keep your laptop or tablet well protected and have a system for organizing accessories that you wouldn't want to leave behind.
A well designed technology bag will not only have a padded sleeve for the device, it should also include practical pockets that fit your charging cords, paperwork, phone, and other valuables. Clark & Mayfield handbags are specially designed for transporting laptops and tablets in work, travel, and social settings.
5. Power bank charger for devices
When you're working on the go, you may not always have a chance to recharge your devices. A power bank charger like the Anker Powercore is a small "brick" battery that can re-power a smartphone four times before it's depleted. This is especially useful if you need to stay connected on road trips or want to keep your devices going on a long flight.
With these five tools in your toolbelt, you'll be better prepared to work from anywhere, in a wide range of situations. Of course, you may need other tools and resources that are particular to your specialty and unique circumstances as well. With the growing number of mobile workers, the technology and tools to support this kind of employment will surely continue to develop.