As one of the small silver linings and positive things that have come out of the COVID-19 induced lockdown, affecting millions of people around the globe, many are increasingly starting to adopt modern technology. People are using tech to keep in contact with friends and family, work together on different projects, play games, and simply pass the time on social media or by streaming films and television.
Are you making the most of your increased online usage? Keeping connected socially and in contact with our friends and family during these times is absolutely crucial, but it’s also important to make sure that you keep yourself proactive and productive, putting your mind and body to work and keeping yourself in a good state. Inspired, and want to find out more on how to stay productive during lockdown? We’ve compiled a short list of three different digital tools that you should be using.
Being stuck inside the same four walls day-in, day-out can be exhausting and boring even at the best of times when there’s plenty to watch on Netflix, and so why not swap out this reality temporarily for a different one entirely? VR is a great way to extend socialising and take it to the next level, and also a good method for escapism, but its uses extend into productivity, too. From training up skilled workers remotely to planning your next holiday when lockdown travel restrictions are lifted, there are plenty of immersive experiences you can get involved in using even the most primitive and cheaply available headsets.
VR and Investment – Considering investment as a financial bolster? Investment has also never been more accessible from the comfort of your own home. Stock and shares investment is relatively straight-forward to get involved with (with developments in online trading and smartphone apps in recent years making it easier than ever to start). Companies such as RWinvest are also offering property investment advice and materials to look into during lockdown, with virtual reality as a major component. Investors can use VR to look around their potential investment prospect and get a real in-depth view, as well as looking at off-plan (‘in-progress’) developments that haven’t yet been completed, and so aren’t visit-able in the first place.
Non-essential shops might be closed until further notice – and affected for a long time after things start to open back up, anyway – but by creating an online presence, you might be able to reach new audiences and make money if you have something to sell. Platforms like Shopify can be great to look into if you have an idea for a digital business, and want to act on it now that you have a little bit of extra time on your hands.
Looking for a way to make a bit of extra income during the pandemic? If you have a hobby or passion, but don’t want to go to the trouble of creating your own digital storefront, you could also offer out your talents and services on platforms like Upwork and Fiverr. This can be a great way to make extra funds during lockdown, and help out others that need work done in the process.
Collaborative working platforms
If you have a team of colleagues that you typically work alongside in an office, or even a group of friends that you want to work together with on something new and exciting, it’s never been easier. Here are some of the different platforms that you might want to try out if you haven’t already.
Slack – An excellent work platform, slack allows you to create different channels and sub-categories within an overall digital workspace. It’s perfect for staying in the loop with what’s going on in your workplace, and with matching desktop and smartphone apps, it’s extremely intuitive and easy to use. Better still, it’s free to set up and get started with.
Microsoft Teams – You might have seen this one advertised on television or online quite a bit, and being a Microsoft product, it’s pretty much guaranteed to be high quality. Teams is quite similar to Slack, with channels and separate messaging avenues for different teams and sub-teams, but it also has a voice and video-call function built-in. While others prefer to use Google Hangouts, Skype or Zoom for video calls and conferencing, Microsoft Teams encompasses quite a lot of the different features that you might need throughout lockdown. So in that sense, it’s a bit of a jack of all trades.
Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, and Slides – Not only is the Google suite of software a completely free alternative to Microsoft Office that’s incredibly easy to use if you’re familiar with the likes of Word or PowerPoint, but it’s also a fantastic platform for collaborating.
By simply sharing your work with a friend or colleague, you can both edit the same document simultaneously, adding to or commenting on work. This is great for efficiency, and it ensures that two people aren’t needlessly completing the same tasks without realising.