How to Make Your Company Remote with Leading SaaS Tools
Software as a Service (SaaS) is a form of cloud computing, a service model, in which subscribers are provided with off-the-shelf application software that is fully maintained by its provider. The model has quickly gained popularity because of its low entry cost. For a nominal fee per user, organizations of varying sizes can quickly and easily deploy a wide range of applications.
While some concerns still exist, many have concluded that in most cases, the benefits far outweigh the costs. Today, an application that can cost hundreds of dollars can be used for a small fee. Today, businesses heavily rely on various tools such as a logo creator, lead generator, web optimization with mouseflow, etc. to grow their business. In a changed working environment when companies are forced to work remotely, SaaS tools are needed for running their business smartly.
For those interested in using SaaS platforms for remote work, there are also a number of tools in this regard, which we will review today.
In this article, we will share a selection of SaaS services and tools for successful remote teamwork and data collection (parsing) that will work for any business.
What is SaaS in Simple Words
SaaS is like renting a house or an apartment with furniture, appliances, and even dishes for any period of time. You live there, and its owner takes care of everything else, e.g. maintenance and repairs.
Most SaaS platforms provide data storage services (projects, information, emails) along with access to the software. However, there are services where projects are not stored. Their work is organized according to the “work-download-leave” approach.
Say, you are going to cook soup. You have all the necessary ingredients, your grandmother’s recipe, and a family (that will eat the soup). But you still need to cook it somewhere.
So… what does SaaS have to do with this, you ask?
Let’s say you absolutely do not want to waste your time and effort on cooking craft soup but are willing to pay to get a ready meal right away. In that case, you go to a restaurant that has several types of custom soup and order one for the family that you would like best.
Although you can’t get soup that’s cooked according to your granny’s recipe here, the establishment still takes all the trouble of cooking and serving, which is beneficial. All you have to do is show up and place your order.
Once again, as mentioned above, SaaS provides off-the-shelf application software, which is fully serviced by the provider. For example, Google Docs or Microsoft Office 365.
This solution covers the needs of businesses as much as possible and is easy to manage, which removes an extra burden from the company. The same goes for all related costs.
On the other hand, this solution is not that flexible. Plus, as mentioned above, you can’t cook according to your recipe – you can only choose from what’s available.
Depending on the company size, its business type, IT infrastructure development level, and experience of employees, different solutions can be suitable for this or that company. Alternatively, it can also be a combination of several cloud services for different services may be suitable for a company.
The main thing is to choose the right balance between the potential costs and functionality you can get for that cost.
SaaS Tools. Pros and Cons
Cloud technology is easy to use, and this is not the only advantage.
- Low cost. Subscribing to software costs much less than buying a license;
- Collaborative work. In many services, several executors can work on one project at the same time;
- Low probability of data loss due to technical problems. SaaS has your back covered even if your lights go off or you forget to save something – all your data is saved immediately as it’s entered;
- Accessibility. You can start doing something in your office, then take a cab to a meeting and continue working from your phone;
- Regular updates. Cloud services are constantly updated by a team of developers with no effort on the part of users;
- Reduced system load on user’s gadgets and equipment. There’s no need to use memory to install tons of various programs – one browser will be quite enough. There’s also no need to buy expensive powerful equipment – your service provider will take care of everything on its own servers.
However, even this popular model has some cons.
- High price in the long run. Using a paid service for a long time may turn out more expensive than one-time payment for licensed software;
- Risk of data loss. All data is with your provider. If servers stop working or are hacked (which still can happen, theoretically), you will lose valuable information;
- Low speed at high loads. The capabilities of the service provider’s software are not unlimited. Thus, if a large number of users are connected to the cloud at the same time, the speed may drop.
SaaS Model in Use. Examples
SaaS products have been known for quite a long time. Email services are considered to be the first representatives of the model.
Today, the model is widely used in the following applications:
- Text, graphic, and video editors (GoogleDocs, Figma, Canva, Adobe);
- Social networks (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter);
- Video and podcast hosting (Muvi, Cincopa, Vadootv, Buzzsprout);
- CRM systems (Salesforce, Oracle CX Cloud Suite, HubSpot, Zoho, Insightly, and eWay-CRM);
- E-commerce systems (BigCommerce, Shopify, Amazon Web Services);
- Website builders (WiX, Setup, uCoz);
- Enterprise management systems (Oracle JD Edwards EnterpriseOne, Microsoft Dynamics ERP, SAP Business ByDesign, Sage Business Cloud X3).
You’ve probably heard a lot about SaaS-based tools like Slack (for communication), Google Analytics (for user insights and performance analysis), Trello (for visual boards), Zoom (for video meetings), and Loom (for sharing videos). These are the industry giants that everyone knows about. Other leading companies successfully use them in their work. So if you still don’t, you should definitely try all of them.
Anyway, today we’re going to review different tools and services that we think are not that popular among remote teams today. And we’re here to fix that.
With that out of the way, let’s get to our list!
Top 10 SaaS Tools and Services for Remote Teams
ClickUp is a service with all the necessary features for task management in a remote team. The service is intuitive to use and has a simple but neat design. You can also expect pop-ups with useful tips the first time you use ClickUp. They will help you understand its basic functions within an hour.
ClickUp combines dozens of different features, e.g. a to-do list, chat, document creation, notifications, scheduling, and more.
This task and project management service supports integration with more that 1,000 third-party services and apps. It allows you to assign employees responsible for tasks, work with recurring tasks, exchange comments between team members, and so on.
There are several options for viewing tasks and other project management elements on the service. Dashboard, task sheet, Kanban board, calendar, and Gantt chart. Tasks in ClickUp can be fully customizable to users’ needs. You can change color, add links, documents, images/videos, charts, set deadlines, etc.
ClickUp basic features:
- Live chat with the ability to leave comments on tasks;
- Custom variety of elements to change – change the color of service elements, change to dark theme, customize various fields, etc;
- Creating documents. ClickUp has a built-in document editor;
- Setting and keeping track of time for tasks;
- Project templates. Choose from dozens of ready-to-use templates for different business spheres (Marketing, Design, etc.);
- Setting task priorities.
Kdan Document 365 Business
Document 365 Business is a collaborative document management platform. It’s a robust and reliable software that works on all platforms with all document formats, allowing you and your team to work together on projects, share password-protected links (if you’re a member), and work with PDF files. As for the latter, you can get access, edit, approve, sign, send or fax documents in a timely manner.
Share documents with your team and third parties. Everything syncs with your cloud for efficient project management. The same goes for exporting your data, editing, and signing contracts/documents. This software should be a good place to start for a management solution.
Document 365’s key features include:
- Real-time collaboration with your team;
- Access, approve, and edit PDF files directly from any of your devices;
- Add any type of digital content to your documents;
- Have instant access to updates and bug fixes;
- Password-protected links;
- A complete set of tools available on iOS, Android, Mac, and Windows;
- 1 TB of storage space;
- Affordable cost ($5 per license);
- Track your documents so you can see who’s been looking at them and for how long;
- Export to PDF, ePub, Word, Markdown.
Alternatively, EisenVault is also one of the best programs making document management easier for remote teams. It’s a cloud-based software that provides features such as local installation, hybrid model, physical records management, records management consultation, etc.
ProProfs Help Desk
ProProfs Help Desk is a robust help desk software that streamlines the entire customer support process. Immediately after a customer tries to contact a support agent to resolve an issue, everything can be tracked using this software tool.
All you have to do is sync your current customer-facing email with this software, and you’re all set. If you don’t have an email dedicated to your customer requests, you can create a new email and start using this software exclusively for your customer requests.
Having a single platform with one centralized view for all your teams makes it easy to solve your customers’ problems instantly.
Instead of spending days (or weeks) getting back to your customer’s problem, with ProProfs Help Desk, you can easily respond to your customers and offer precise solutions.
This tool comes with a shared inbox that helps your agents easily categorize, prioritize, and collaborate on customer calls. This makes it incredibly easy for agents to solve customer problems in the shortest possible time.
UberConference is an easy-to-use conferencing service. With its reliable call recording tools and many great features, it’s one of the best free services on the Web. It may not have the best sound quality for calls, however, it’s still better than most other conferencing services.
UberConference is developed to fix the most problematic aspects of traditional online conferencing. Streaming video is often unstable (we want to believe that this eternal problem will be solved soon), so the creators of UberConference focused on quality sound transmission.
UberConference provides screen sharing, general access to files, and easy control over participation in the conference (displaying the number of connected participants, their photos, indicating the speaker at every moment of time, etc.).
The service is free for conferences with up to 10 participants.
- Free trial;
- Record enabled at all levels;
- Instant and scheduled conferences.
- No PIN (for the host).
- Easy to use;
- Screen sharing;
- LinkedIn, Facebook, and Google+ profiles.
Typeform is an easy-to-use drag-and-drop data collection tool for professionals (online forms, surveys, quizzes, landing pages, etc.) with modern design and flexibility.
Typeform is a versatile data collection tool that allows you to create questionnaire forms that can be inserted into your blog and website. it’s a convenient service that will help you easily contact your website visitors, create surveys, and develop your website or blog.
Typeform is an easy-to-use service that will come in handy for website and online store owners to get feedback from visitors and customers. You can also use it to conduct surveys of any type and complexity, as well as to create other web forms or improve website performance or speed by choosing the fastest WordPress hosting that guarantees the speed and performance.
Obtained surveys can be viewed and function on any device, including mobile phones.
The platform allows you to customize quizzes and feedback forms for employees and customers. Moreover, thanks to integration with Stripe, you can accept payments for online stores.
Typeform allows you to make a multi-page survey with a variety of test forms, embedded images, and videos. You can also analyze the use of web forms, view the results of responses, analyze the average survey time, find out what devices were used to pass your survey, and how many users refused to take it.
You can also use Typeform Designer for contests and tests, research the satisfaction of your employees and the market, etc.
Make unique and creative mini-apps, interactive narratives, presentations, guides, and much more. The best thing is that you can do it free of charge.
Octoparse is one of the most famous data-parsing services. The service offers visual programming of parsing, templates to collect data from popular services such as Instagram, Facebook, Amazon, eBay, and others, a total of 52 templates.
The advantage of this service for users without any experience with cloud parsing services is a lot of articles that explain how to use them. Plus, they can also get acquainted with the community and watch video tutorials.
The service provides access to a wide enough range of features in the free version. You can collect data on small websites or sections of a site aggregator. The number of pages for data collecting is not limited. Octoparse accepts Mastercard, Visa, and PayPal.
- Numerous templates of popular sites;
- Parsing of dynamic content;
- IP rotation;
- Money refund within 5 days;
- Work with API.
Free version features:
- Unlimited number of pages;
- Export of 10,000 strings;
- Up to 10 saved settings;
- No templates, scheduler, or API.
Mozenda is one of the oldest cloud services. At the end of 2020, the company announced its merger with Dexi and further work under the brand. The service offers both visual parsing customization and the ability to program parsers independently on Mozenda’s facilities. Alternatively, you can purchase a software license and host it on your own server. Mozenda accepts Mastercard, Visa, however, this information is hidden – before you start you will have to contact company representatives.
- Templates popular sites;
- Parsing of dynamic content;
- IP rotation;
- Refunds within 30 days;
- Working with API.
Proofhub is an all-in-one project management and collaboration software tool that gives your team the right tools for better project planning.
ProofHub combines data about all current processes and personnel management in one place, including remote personnel, and communication with clients. The tool allows you to organize the entire development process – from the initial idea to the final report to the client, while controlling the time and resources.
- Add details to any task, including approximate task times, tags (similar to tags), and upload files from Google Drive, Dropbox, and OneDrive;
- Manage work requests, avoid messy inboxes, and never miss requirements with request forms.
- A convenient reporting tool for analyzing project progress and adjusting plans accordingly;
- Assign custom project roles to manage access to anything according to your organization’s workflow.
- Use Gantt chart software to help your team easily plan projects, modify schedules, and visualize tasks via a timescale;
- Use a calendar to schedule events, tasks, and milestones.
- Make announcements to motivate teams, recognize good work, and share any information that may not apply to a specific project;
- Conduct quick individual and group chats with teams and clients;
- Verify teams to review and approve files easier, faster, and more efficiently;
- Add schedules, create time reports, set time estimates, track time manually using multiple timers;
- Use quick personal notes to record your stuff;
- Use “@” to quickly address any team member and get their attention.
Todoist is a web-based service with a set of tools to manage various business tasks.
As we all know, services are meant to simplify the working process, not complicate it. If you spend more time on the service than you would without it, you don’t need it.
Todoist frees up a ton of time and space in your head. You don’t have to remember anything else. An average person can keep in mind 5-10 items at a time, and you can have dozens or even hundreds of things in Todoist, without the need to remember them all.
- Cross-platform personal task management service allows you to schedule, date, and prioritize your tasks;
- Signing up for Todoist takes seconds and if you have a Google account, you can sign in instantly;
- You can add a new project, specify its name, then add tasks, specify their description and planned deadlines. All tasks can be sorted by date, name, or importance;
- You can specify the priority from 4 (the lowest) to 1 (the highest). When your task is done, you only need to tick the box to archive it;
- There are Chrome and Firefox extensions, an official iOS app, and quite a few unofficial apps for Android, Windows Phone 7, and Symbian;
- People with paid accounts can add comments to their tasks, view completed tasks, send tasks by email, get notifications via email or SMS, export tasks to Google Calendar, Outlook, or iCal, use search, and view their productivity statistics by day and project.
Mockplus is a collaboration platform for designers, developers, and managers. You heard about Figma, right? Well, Mockplus is not that good, but it’s still a great alternative.
Mockplus provides access to an all-in-one platform, allowing you to design faster, smarter, and easier. It will surprise you with its unique merits and approach.
The editor has all the features you need to design and create interactions the way you want.
Mockplus is a prototyping tool suitable for agile development and ideal for prototyping software companies. The visual design of the platform’s components also reduces programming and training costs.
Perhaps, the interface design is not as fancy as it could be, the UX could also be better at some point. However, it’s a very powerful app. No one has gone as far as Mockplus, trying to combine all the processes. Despite all the complex structure, it’s all quite intuitive and easy to understand here.
You can expect a lot of handy solutions in the application. However, you will still have to test them in combat.
NuovoTeam is a holistic amalgamation of features designed to empower enterprises to increase the productivity of their field workforce. The productivity and engagement suite allows the organization to track and monitor as well as communicate efficiently in a cost-effective manner. Features such as monitoring of employee location, organizing of work shift schedule with clock-in & clock-out, workflow management and scheduling, unified contact management of corporate directory sums up the administrative functionality. Also, communication tools such as Push-to-Talk (PTT), VoIP calling, instant messaging, video calling, and group chats facilitate the all-in-one communication suite and compactible usability tool for enterprises.
SaaS services for remote teams provide truly advanced support to their users. We hope that this article helps you to find new solutions to make working and paying your remote team much easier. There are so many benefits to consider here.
Thus, we recommend paying good attention to the tools in our list. This does not just refer to advanced Internet users but new small teams as well. High-quality SaaS products have turned the Web into a truly powerful tool, and we should use the given opportunities.