I can not imagine working any more than remotely. However, this would not be possible without these tools

After nearly five years of remote work, I can no longer imagine myself working differently. The comfort of working from your own home is indescribable. It would not be so, however, if it were not for the right tools.

I remember very well the "przedchmurowe" times, when the only form of exchanging business files were either emails with limited size attachments, or ... a flash drive or a CD that had to be transferred from hand to hand. If several people had to work on one file, the way the file was stored was often measured in kilometers, not megabytes of data transfer.

And even when the network connection in our country has become popular enough to handle most things on the Internet, when it was necessary to work on one file by many people, you had to bounce the file like a ping-pong ball, exchanging e-mails with subsequent iterations of the same material.

As you can guess, in such conditions remote work was not the simplest. In the end, it would be much easier to go to the editor's desk and exchange a few comments quickly, rather than sending him a file and waiting for a response.

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Today is completely different. This remote work is faster than working in a stationary office.

The core of my work for writing texts. The quintessence of working with the written word are ... endless corrections. Before a text saved in .docx format becomes a book or article on Spider's Web, it undergoes a lot of changes. Sometimes small, sometimes radical.

The latter I remembered very well from my first book. The manuscript then saved in .doc format (the publisher used Office 2007) returned to me all red, with hundreds of comments and suggestions for changes. As - then - a greenhorn, I did not understand the merits of many amendments and I had many doubts about the suggested changes. Unfortunately, the technological possibilities of the text editor from the "przedchmurowe" times were so limited that ... I had to reach for the phone or send an e-mail with an email to the editor in order to consult a change.

Today, working with the text looks completely different. The finished file, saved in the OneDrive cloud, can be made available to the other person at any time. The editor can even browse the text in real time and apply corrections or comments. I do not have to send mails, call or write on the communicator if I have any questions. All I need to do is respond to the comment and the other person using the Office 365 suite will find out about it immediately and will be able to respond to that comment; even from the level of a mobile application on a smartphone.

Speaking of mobile applications on the smartphone - it was not until recently that it was unthinkable to share one file between the computer and the phone. Sure, you could manually flip documents between one device and another, but it was not convenient. Now there is no problem - at any moment I can open any Office 365 document in a dedicated mobile application. If I am away from home and there is a need to urgently make corrections to the text (it happens more often than you would expect ...), all I need to do is pull the phone out of my pocket and I am ready to work.

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Of course, the same applies to tables in Excel or presentation in PowerPoint. The executed businessman can work with his team from anywhere on Earth, receiving updated sales plans on a regular basis or necessary corrections to the presentation before an important speech.

The cloud turned my workflow upside down.

I am an active subscriber of Office 365 for many years. OneDrive cloud is my most important and main data warehouse, as I wrote in the previous text . I appreciate the freedom that this solution gives me in cooperation with other people, but I appreciate even more the changes that have occurred in my individual style of work.

I used to use an analog notebook once. Worn Moleskine was my "backup brain", where I wrote important notes, ideas for texts, where I collected auxiliary materials and wrote out task lists for a given day.

I have not done this for years. I collect notes, ideas and reference materials in a digital notebook. When working on larger texts, where research includes many documents or websites, I save them all in a dedicated OneNote notebook, which I can then assign to a specific document in Word. In this way, I can access my notes at any time, without having to open a second program - notes appear in the form of a side window in a text editor.

The cloud also drastically reduced the amount of paper used in my home. For a very long time, I have no longer stored in an analog form documents other than those which, for legal reasons, should be kept on paper for a minimum of five years. In the event, however, if the government decided to minimize felling of the forest for unnecessary clerical clashes - I am ready. Every document I have in my hands in paper form has been archived in a dedicated directory in the OneDrive cloud.

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In the past I used a scanner for this purpose, you know, one that's integrated with the printer. Then the Office Lens application was created and I did not have to scan anything anymore - all I needed was a smartphone and its camera. Today the matter is even simpler, because the Office Lens technology has been included in the OneDrive mobile application, so to add a document to the cloud, it is enough to scan it directly from the application level directly to the selected directory.

What is very important, the scans made in this way do not have to be static .jpg or PDF files, even if they have been handwritten - Office Lens and OneDrive can transform the scan into a fully editable .docx file, and OCR (optical character recognition) technology allows reading handwriting and transform it into virtual, editable letters. No scanner integrated with the printer was able to do this.

Thanks to the fact that all the documents I have cataloged in the cloud, I no longer wonder "in which drawer I have dropped this invoice", or "where I threw these documents from 10 years ago". I simply enter the name of the document in the OneDrive search engine, or go directly to the directory where I saved the file.

The cloud has also made my company life easier. Instead of wasting time and money on couriers, and sending physical documents to the accounting office, I share them directly from the OneDrive folder. Simple, fast and effective.

I can not imagine working any different. Office 365 is a real game-changer.

To tell the truth ... I do not really understand people who can not convince them yet, stuck stubbornly on the solutions from the "pre-cloud" times. The license for the Office 365 package, under which we receive a number of leading office programs and 1TB of data space in the OneDrive cloud, now costs (in the version for one position) more or less as a medium-sized coffee in a monthly network. For a packet for five people, we will pay more or less what Netflix is!

I pay more than PLN 40 a month for escapism in the world of movies and series. Which - let's say it honestly - often turns into a waste of time. When it comes to Office 365, for a similar amount we get a set of tools that save us time in every case. And many people will probably agree with me that every tool that saves us time is priceless - because you can not get back the time or complain about it. It's gone, and already.

For this reason, I can no longer imagine working differently than remotely. Other than in the cloud.

* The material was created in cooperation with Microsoft Poland.

I can not imagine working any more than remotely. However, this would not be possible without these tools


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