Awards and Promotions
Posted on January 18, 2017 by Rachel Anderson
Remote working is less of a niche and more of a standard in 2017. Having the freedom to work remotely does not mean kicking back on the beach holding a piña colada 24/7, but if that’s your thing, you can do just that when you win the Mobile Year Sweepstakes. Remote working means freedom, but it also means a whole other set of challenges outside the scope of a typical 9 to 5 desk job.
No one knows more about remote working challenges then Remotive; a startup that is on a mission to help remote workers be productive. Today we have a special guest in our virtual VirtualPBX office. Meet Adrien Belhomme, a remote working expert at Remotive.
Q1. What is Remotive? Why was it founded?
After spending years helping companies such as Accenture, Google and Buffer think about remote work, Rodolphe learned how to become a great remote worker and decided to start Remotive in 2014, to help people do the same and find a remote job.
Remotive helps 20,000+ remote workers from all over the world to be productive by emailing our best tips, twice a month. Remotive also runs a community where hundreds of actively engaged remote workers support each other. Also, we list over 200 startups who welcome and celebrate remote work, most of which are actively hiring as well.
Q2. What are some main challenges that remote workers face?
Working remotely means working outside of the office. It gives you so many freedoms and perks! But without clear boundaries between working and nonworking hours, it can become difficult to know when to disconnect and switch completely between the two. This is one of the most popular topics in our community, and knowing how and when to disconnect is one of the main challenges that remote workers face.
Q3. What are your favorite productivity hacks?
Establishing a routine is really important. As a remote worker working on multiple projects, I tend to switch tasks too many times during the day. And I can lose my focus. Having a routine and knowing what I’m going to work on in advance is the best hack I know to maximize productivity. Additionally, having a strong routine and schedule is a good way to better delineate between working and nonworking hours.
Q4. What is the Remotive Slack channel like? Why is it a great resource for remote workers?
We see the Remotive Slack team as the world’s largest virtual co-working space. It’s a place where we support each other as a community, and share remote jobs along with the productivity tips to succeed at them! Whether you’re just getting started, or you’re a tenured remote worker, you’ll meet like-minded professionals and surely make new friends. We have members from all around the world, working in design, engineering, marketing, and non-tech jobs like virtual assistants.
Ready to put these productivity tips to the test? Enter for a chance to win over $1,000 in remote working tools.
Posted on January 5, 2017 by Dan Quick
Tired of looking at the pictures of your coworker’s extended trip to SCUBA in Belize while the snow is piling up outside? Or maybe you just are feeling that post-holiday malaise and are carrying the weight of returning to work like a ton of bricks. Well boy oh boy do we have good news for you! Starting now, you can go sign up to win over $1,000 in the tools you need to work from anywhere.
What #MobileYear Is
The #MobileYear Sweepstakes is more than just another sign-up-to-win experience from the depths of the internet. This is an opportunity to win big and live big, all while staying connected to the people, places, and things that matter to you and your business. Take a look at what one lucky winner will receive-
- One free year of Dash VoIP service for all of your business communications. This award-winning hosted business phone system is easy to use anywhere you have a access to the internet and has a $250 value!
- A lifetime subscription for up to 5 team members to the Remotive channel on Slack valued at $295! For anyone working remotely or who would want to, Remotive is the single best source of remote work tips, jobs, and community news.
- A year’s subscription to Sneek, the slickest video chat tool for business out there with a whopping value of $600! This tool lets you check-in and check-up-on all of your team members quickly and personally, no matter where any of you are in the world!
- And most importantly, you also will win the best prize of all – NO MORE EXCUSES! So sign up now!
The #MobileYear Won’t Last Long
We hope you’re as excited about this great collaboration to offer one lucky winner the chance of a lifetime as we are. Don’t let the excitement distract you from doing what you need to do, go sign up now and make sure your name is in the hat. Because the contest ends on January 31, 2017, you’ll need to act fast. Plus, we’re going to offer you more chances to win with the more people you share the sweepstakes with, so make sure to let everyone on Twitter and Facebook know about the contest early and often. Because, who knows, maybe you’ll both be working remotely thanks to these great tools before you know it.
Posted on December 8, 2016 by Dan Quick
Every time I hear my friends discussing the various gift-giving traditions in their families, I am reminded of how different all of our expectations really are. I have some Jewish friends who do the traditional eight days of gifts and some who save it all for the end. I know people who celebrate Christmas with a morning full of gifts and some other who open them all the night before on Christmas Eve. Then there are others still who defer or advance their gifts considerably from their respective holidays to accommodate time spent with certain distant relatives. The one thing I’ve found to be consistent over all of these families, however, is that the children involved always think it’s too long of a wait to get to the unwrapping. While this may invite a conversation about how deeply consumerism has permeated this time of the year, I think it’s better to focus on how awesome an early present is, instead. And with that in mind, we have our own early present to give to you!
For You, From Us – Free Holiday Recordings
One of our business partners, Snap Recordings, has been providing professional studio-quality recordings for our customers for years and the results have been terrific. It was with that in mind that we decided to partner with them again for something special for our customers this holiday season. Starting today, businesses can download one of eight free holiday recordings from Snap Recordings! This is an unprecedented offer from the Hollywood caliber talent pool that Snap Recordings relies on and something we’re proud to offer to all of our customers.
The Real Spirit of the Season
We routinely build products on the notion that everyone who uses VoIP should benefit from the best options out there. It was with this same philosophy that we’ve decided to offer these free holiday recordings from Snap Recordings to anyone who needs them, not just our customers. Simply follow this link to the eight, pre-recorded holiday greetings, choose which one you want, and download it for your business’ use. It’s that simple!
We believe that this early present will help any business present a more polished, professional, and festive appearance during the holidays. Furthermore, we believe that every business, not just our own customers, should benefit from a little extra consideration, and we’re happy to offer that to you all.
Make sure to share with us your favorite holiday traditions, unwrapping practices, and which one of these early present recordings you chose to use on our Twitter account or Facebook page. Until then and no matter what your traditions may be, have a safe and happy holiday season!
Posted on October 27, 2016 by Dan Quick
Because we have more distributed workers on our team than many companies, we went ahead and jumped the gun on our Halloween party. This was a very good decision, by the way. So good, in fact, that we wanted to take a moment today to share with you a surefire recipe for a successful Halloween party at the office.
On one hand that could be the spooky list of ingredients that make up the fun Halloween party we had, or it could also be a reference to one of the most important parts – beer. Okay, I’m kind of kidding about that, but sure, unless your office has some strict guidelines about alcohol at company events, it wouldn’t hurt to encourage dressing up with a cold one after work. That aside, here are some other easy ways to make your next office Halloween party a hit.
- I shouldn’t have to mention this, but the absolute best part of Halloween is dressing up. Encourage everyone to wear a costume with a contest. Some people may be on the fence about dressing up, but a sweet Starbucks card or day of PTO might push them over the edge.
- If you haven’t done it lately, pumpkin carving is way more fun that you remember. For about $10 you can get some stencils that you can attach to the pumpkins or you can download hundreds of free stencils online.
- Any kind of snack food will be a hit, but try to have fun with it by doing some of the things we’ve showed off on our VirtualPBX Instagram.
- And this is more appropriate for companies like ours that have people working all over the country, but make sure the timing works for the bulk of your employees. That may sound like a scheduling headache but it’s really easy plus it means that, like we did, you might get to party on a school night!
Socialization is the Key
Which is my less than subtle way to encourage you to share the results of your party with us! But don’t worry, once you actually get your Halloween party off the ground, you’ll want to talk about it because it’ll have been so much fun. On that note, I hope you understand that many of the photos above have been redacted because what happens at the VirtualPBX Halloween party, stays at the VirtualPBX Halloween party. Have fun with your own event and remember to share it with us on Twitter and Facebook, and have fun!
Posted on October 19, 2016 by Dan Quick
With all of the new and exciting information about Kazoo 4.0 getting shared here at KazooCon 2016, it’s tough to try and catch it all, but we’re here for you! Day two was jam-packed with speakers and 2600Hz product information, of course, but we also happened to get a special opportunity to interview with Patrick Sullivan, 2600Hz’s COO. Before we get into that, however, let’s take a look at some of the other highlights from the day.
Kazoo Goes Mobile
One of the biggest announcements about the updates to Kazoo 4.0 was that, unlike other attempts to get it off the ground in the past, Kazoo is now totally ready to go fully mobile. This was a big crowd pleaser as we saw the actual SIM cards that would be used and, in a wildly successful (and rather brave, I might add) live demo, they worked like a charm. Naturally, many in the crowd had a lot of follow-up questions about this and we’re sure to see plenty of activity on Kazoo 4.0’s GitHub related to it.
How the Sausage is Made
We also got a glimpse into the unbelievably well-organized product roadmap that 2600Hz operates on. We saw this in the context of how they triage ongoing product development projects and how they weigh those efforts against the various feature requests from the developer community. Using about as many JIRA epics and project workflow charts as you’d expect to find at NASA, they systematically shift from project to project with impressive efficiency. In fact, this is how after a few items in the Kazoo forums regarding downloading voicemails arose they were able to pivot internally and within three-month roll out the all-new Voicemail Manager. Pretty impressive inner workings, to say the least.
But these developments and announcements aside, I did promise you an exclusive sit-down with Patrick Sullivan, so without further ado, here he is in his own words.
What’s the one thing about Kazoo that 2600hz is proudest of?
One highly valuable component that makes our products best of breed, is the platform’s ability to scale to demand and obtain optimal uptime. Our evolution of the Kazoo platform has far surpassed our greatest expectations. We not only hit but exceeded our operational milestones.
Early adopters of Kazoo were working with sub-optimal installation conditions, however, our engineering team relentlessly worked to ensure a functional platform was the end result. Tactics used in our early days of development, created habitual processes for developing “commodity hardware” (myriad of components) resulting in a secure and reliable platform. The Kazoo call platform has established redundancy between multiple host servers, called clusters. With this failover system in place, interruption events are significantly reduced and customers gain the peace of mind that their business will be able to carry on in the event of a natural disaster or unexpected system failures.
What was the greatest challenge that you faced when designing Kazoo?
When pioneering new products, challenges and obstacles are eminent. Since 2600Hz has always embraced bleeding-edge technologies, and strived to consistently ‘push the envelope’ there were bouts of frequent deterrents and complications. In the earlier stages of development, we’d run into road blocks and had to backtrack on multiple occasions, to ensure the right components we’re being utilized within a realistic scope. At the end of the day, we were very lucky the components we chose to implement into our foundation, came together successfully and continued to integrate and operationalize.
What gets you most excited about KazooCon 2016?
KazooCon 2016 is our biggest event to date. This year, we’re showcasing a year of ‘behind the scenes’ dedication and hard work optimizing our products to the fullest potential.
One perspective we like to make is the comparison of our Kazoo platform to a skyscraper. Where other companies focus on dry walls, and fancy looking features, we’ve focused on the foundation (laying deep pylons, pouring concrete, proper piping, etc.). Now that 4.0 is launching we have the world’s largest frame of a Skyscraper and are now focused on finalizing and perfecting functional features for a complete package. We’ve moved the needle in a way our competitors haven’t quite touched upon, as we’ve invested the time and dedication on underlying platform, creating a reliable foundation for our new and innovative features being released over the next few weeks.