Simplify Connections for Remote Teams with 5 Tools - RootLo

Simplify Connections for Remote Teams with 5 Tools

June 15, 2022

Successful companies set out to build a global team that rivals the others.   They go all out to onboard the best of the best. Modern companies hire top recruiters to sift through what feels like unlimited applications, offer remote work to attract talent across the globe, and curate unique benefit packages.  Still though, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that job turnover is at historic levels for 2022, with 4.5 million people quitting in March alone.  Begging the question; once you have your team in place, how do you keep them engaged?

It makes sense that companies invest in human capital; whether your company is big or small, your employees are the heartbeat of your organization.  However, hiring top-talent to build a first-class team is costly, particularly if you don’t keep turnover under control.  Glassdoor estimates that it costs $4,000/employee and 24-days to hire one new employee. 

Gallup reports that companies with high employee experience scores experience 23% more profitability and 43% less turnover.  Answering our question; if you simplify connections across your remote team and build a culture where your team feels integrated, then perhaps you can insulate your business from high-turnover!  In other words, invest resources from the get-go into tools that boost global team engagement. 

Simplify Connections to Improve Engagement:

The decision to invest more in on-barded employees is easy once you consider the numbers:

With all of this in mind, we recently set out to understand the market for tools to support collaboration amongst our team, and decided to focus on finding solutions that aim to solve two employee frustrations:

  • Simplify Connections: Gallup’s, Why We Need Best Friends at Work Report, found that employees who don’t have friends at the office are unsatisfied and disconnected from their work. To keep employee’s engaged with their work, the flame needs to remain lit! You know, the fire burning when you start a new job, the one that motivates you to put your best foot forward?  If you’ve felt that fire, you also know how easily it can burn out.  It’s critical to simplify connections for remote teams, so that employees stay connected and build a global team culture that keeps the heartbeat of the company strong.
  • Maximize Efficiency:  McKinsey found that the average employee spends 1.8 hours per day sifting through internal information.  That’s nearly 20% of an employee’s day id spent on tasks that pull them away from their core responsibilities!  Employees want to be doing what they were hired to do, and modern employers need to help maximize efficiency to keep remote teams on task!

With this research in mind, our Culture Team embarked on isolating the top 5 tools to equip our workforce with to proactively address employee engagement and lower employee turnover. With thousands of options on the market, we hope it’s helpful to share what’s working for us:

Give Your Team 5 Tools to Connect Better:

1. Slack

The first tool we considered: a communication platform.  Everyone needs a user-friendly, asynchronous platform that can simplify connections and make it easier for peers to get in touch!  There are a handful of big names in this space, we decided on Slack.  It’s inexpensive (allowing us to spend on other tools!), intuitive, offers thousands of Apps that we can leverage within our Workspace, and after a quick internal poll – it is the tool that our team wanted. 

Cost: starting at $6.67/user/mo

What we love: Download Apps in nearly every category, allowing you to customize the workspace to the needs of your team! 

2. The RootLo Map-Based Directory

One of the challenges of being a remote company is building those friendships at work.  Building rapport with a colleague you’ve never even seen before can feel impossible!  Downloading the RootLo Directory to our Slack Workspace allowed us to instantly humanize our team.  The remote-centric profiles have laid the foundation for connections across our team.  Have a 1:1 with a new team member?  Pop over to the Directory and checkout their profile before even picking up the phone. Planning to work from a different location soon and hoping to connect with a local teammate while you’re there?  You can use the Directory for that too! 

Cost: starting at $100/mo

What we love:  The intelligent search saves our employees time when trying to find contact information and dynamic profiles amplify how our employees connect with one another.

3. Donut

Donut is the King of all Slack Apps!  This culture supportive tool is unrivaled and can really add some spice to the monotony of working solo.   Download Donut to your Slack Workspace and recreate the traditional office experiences from anywhere!  Donut helps teams to  connect serendipitously for virtual coffee, peer learning, DEI discussions, birthdays, mentorship, and more.

Cost: starting at $49/mo

What we love: Donut is a cool way to our teammate “mate” since they work remotely and might not otherwise connect!

4. Loom

When your team and clients are distributed around the world, like ours, it’s critical to communicate across time zones! Loom makes communication for growing teams easy by making it easy to record videos and screen snips!   We leverage the video tool for recording demos and company-wide updates.  They offer a great introduction package to get started!

Cost: starting at $8/user/mo

What we love: Our team works all around the world.  It’s critical that we can communicate asynchronously across time zones!

5. Airbnb Team Events

Remote work can benefit us personally and professionally in so many ways!  However, there is no substitution for getting your organization together in-person.  However, Airbnb Team Events is as close as you can get! Now you can literally enjoy a fun, team building experience from anywhere.  Airbnb Experiences for Work offers a great dashboard for managing all of the details that your remote workers need to meet up when they can (in-person or virtually!)!

Cost: $100/mo

What we love:  When we see we have a group of employees working nearby one another via The RootLo Map, we will suggest a nearby Airbnb Experience to get members of our team together!

It’s working for us!

It’s proven that when companies provide their remote teams with the tools to accelerate in their jobs, they feel increased connection to their workplaces and more in tune with their jobs.  We’ve seen this playout across our team and we think it could work for your geographically diverse team too!

The RootLo Team

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