Collaborate with your group online with the best online tools for beginners & advanced organisers

What do I know about remote collaboration?

I work with; and manage many collaborative teams working remotely including campaign groups, creative art groups and my own digital development company that operates 99% remotely. 

The people I work with come from diverse locations across Australia (and the world) with varied backgrounds and computer skills.

For more info, see my personal website or my professional services websites: ActionSkills and Gippsland Web Design

The best

Three essential tools that work across platforms including mobile:

  • Asana
  • Google WorkSpace
  • Zoom

Power collaboration tools

  • Slack
  • Miro
  • Canva

More information on the tools below…

Factors that make this software the best

  • They are popular and widely adapted 
    This makes it more likely your people have used the tools before increasing adoption. If your people are using these tools for other projects, this will reduce their application fatigue. Many of these tools also allow advanced automation and shared functionality across different applications.
  • Low Cost
    We are focusing on tools that are free, cheap or offer community discounts.
    PRO TIP: manages NFP software discounts for a wide range of suppliers. 
  • Easy to use
  • Work across operating systems with minimal bugs

People first

As good as these tools may be, never forget that it is the people we are collaborating with that are the most important consideration. A lot of people struggle with learning new things and also suffer from application fatigue where they are expected to learn too many new applications.

Get agreement from everyone in your team

Agree on the tools you are using and also how you will use them (we don’t use most of the tools features).

Also agree on expectations around participation, behaviour, response times, security requirements and member privacy. 

Form a buddy system

Pair up technically stronger people with your “technically challenged” people. 

A collaborative system is only as productive as its weakest member so the whole group is responsible for upskilling and supporting people who find the new tools challenging.  

Elect a systems manager

Any collaborative system requires a systems manager or management collective to:

  • Facilitate group agreements around privacy, security and response expectations
  • Create the software accounts and manage any compliance or fees.
  • Configure and customise the tools to the groups specific needs
  • Onboarding group members and creating user accounts
  • Training and support

The tools


This specialist project management tool provides many features, however the main role of Asana is an advanced task list. Asana allows discussion and allocation of specific tasks, allowing your team to know who is working on what, discuss the specifics of the task and know when it is due.

The free version is limited to 10 people per team, however allows you to have multiple teams so if you have a team larger than 10, you may be able to segment your group and run with a larger number of participants.

Asana can be used to store research in an ordered way and works great as a collaborative shopping list.

Google Workspace


  • Used for Video Conferencing (meetings, workshops, webinars)
  • Free version very limited for working with groups
  • Google meet is a free alternative. Free users of Google Meet can host meetings with 100 participants for 60 minutes and is also available as part of Google Workspace
  • Zoom offers a 50% NFP discount
  • View Zoom and Zoom pricing


  • Used for messaging
  • Used to replace email in a more efficient way
  • Keybase is a free encrypted alternative
  • View Slack and Slack pricing


  • Used for collaborative Whiteboard / Brainstorming / concept exploration
  • Free version supports 3 boards
  • The pricing is per member with only 30% NFP discount so I recommend using multiple personal accounts and use the tool sparingly
  • View Miro and Miro pricing 


Canva is an applications thats makes advanced graphic design much easier and accessible for normal people without learning complex graphics software like photoshop