With the effects of the pandemic not showing any signs of slowing down, investors and stakeholders alike have been pulling out all stops to ensure productivity and output isn’t compromised even during these difficult times.
Even as we are transitioning into a post-COVID economy, the repercussions of the last year have left the economy with massive consequences that cannot be easily remedied. Most major companies are now pushing for their workers to work remotely full-time.
With this, they have encouraged the use of multiple tools and platforms to keep track of their productivity and mindfulness as they figure out a work/life balance that suits their lifestyle. This new generation of startups have innovated themselves around the infrastructure of remote working, catered specifically for those who will be spending more of their working hours inside their houses rather than in the office.
It doesn’t matter whether you came from the penthouse office in Silicon Valley or the basement attic of a small local business, the pandemic has triggered a sort of mass exodus from traditional office life every one of working age can relate to. Those fortunate enough to still get by with their remote work now have a new problem to face: actually working from home.
It can be quite a switch and will require strong mental vigilance, but with the right access to work from home tools, it can be wholly gratifying too. From online collaboration tools to virtual reality conferencing, here are the top “new normal” startups that are changing the landscape of working from home.
This US-based startup deals with making an employee engagement automation solution for distributed teams. Eloops assists in tracking job satisfaction through the use of custom polls, surveys, feedback rounds, and personalised drafted messages along with in-app notifications. Aside from this, the engagement platform offers pre-made engaging content and virtual team building models to boost teamwork.
Abstract is a design workflow platform that centralizes design decisions, feedback, Sketch files, and specs for your team. Ever since the startup launched in July 2017, over 5,000 design teams across 75 countries have adopted Abstract. Their clientele list grows by the day, some of them including teams from Cisco, Intuit, Spotify, Salesforce, Instacart, OpenTable, and more.
Primarily focused on being a virtual coworking platform, Focusmate makes an active effort to eradicate procrastination and guide users to a more productive flow state on demand. They eliminate distractions by way of a peer accountability partner, which they can assign to you any time for a 50-minute working session over video. There is no chit chat or other unnecessary protocols to follow beforehand, simply book a time and show up.
Plann3r, a Belgian-based startup, makes use of artificial intelligence for their meeting scheduling platform to ensure maximum security. Their services allow companies to create a meeting page, with pre-existing templates if they wished, to better cater to the look of their brand. Plann3r integrates all calendars and third-party software, manages availability, as well as finds and sets the most appropriate slots for meetings.
This startup from Australia, Taskblitz, is first and foremost a team cooperation tool. It focuses on project collaboration, communication, and documentation. Taskblitz helps companies arrange personal or group drag-and-drop task management, milestone tracking, and deadline reminders with ease. It also offers a real-time chat option, as well as invoice management.
Named one of The World’s Most Innovative Companies by Fast Company, Highfive simplifies business collaboration with a conferencing platform that builds connected cultures. It has since become one of the fastest-growing companies in the industry, with Highfive consistently improving meetings for thousands of organizations.
Ukrainian startup Proficonf is a web conference solution, offering high-definition video accessible from any web browser. Their service can accommodate up to 250 participants, better suited for company-wide meetings or virtual conferences that cater to more people than your average weekly team meetings. It also gives you the option to screen record, file sharing, or even collaborative dashboard brainstorming. Proficonf grounds on adjustable connection stability, allowing users with low bandwidth and poor connection to participate.
Remote allows companies to employ anyone, anywhere. It connects over 2 million professionals with remote jobs using machine learning and artificial intelligence. It puts together data that analyses skills, experiences, and personality traits to be able to predict the highest probability of job success. Remote can streamline the recruiting and hiring process of top-quality talent in just minutes.
Figma is the first professional-grade, online tool created specifically for interface design. This startup is based entirely on the browser and enables teams to collaborate in real-time, all the while offering the speed and stability of powerful design programs like Adobe with the versatility and collaborative flexibility of online apps like Google Docs. With Figma the design process is shareable across teams, no matter where the members are located.
Germany-based VRdirect is a startup that develops virtual reality models for various clients. Its solution grants VR content creation tools for sales and marketing teams, particularly for those in need of VR such as car model representations or real estate walkthroughs. VRdirect also allows for instant publishing and real-time updates, enabling team members to build interactive 360° experiences they can share with clients or audiences at any time.
COVID-19 has served up a “new normal” for every industry, being challenging and revealing at the same time. Perhaps the days of traditional 9 to 5’s are going to take a step back for the foreseeable future and we’re going to be looking at more flexible working hours.
With the coming of more startups meant to assist remote workers, the pandemic may have just reinvented the whole concept of work-life balance for the better.