Digital Tools for CSOs for Remote Collaboration + WEBINARS

With the COVID-19 pandemic affecting the entire world, we are all faced with changing the ways we work and we interact within our teams and with our beneficiaries. Working remotely in small teams, organizing webinars or livestreaming events will become the norm. And now is the time to get yourself acquainted with the digital tools out there and discover how you can improve your collaboration.

We’ve put together a list of digital tools (please scroll down) that can help you in these difficult times and, on the longer-term, can enable a better transition towards different ways of working.


Embracing Remote Work for CSO: A series of webinars 

In order to help you and your organisations in these challenging transition times, our Project has developed a series of webinars aimed at supporting CSOs in the EaP countries in embracing remote work. There will be an introductory webinar and four webinars, each of them dealing with a specific aspect of organisations’ transition to remote work and tools that can help you at each step.

Introductory webinar “Tools & Platforms for Video Conferencing: Zoom, WebEx, Jitsi” (March 31, 2020):

Webinar No.1  (April 10, 2020): how remote work affects planning and implementation processes in a CSO and the daily work of our teams, how main pitfalls and challenges are addressed by IT companies, tips and comparison of ready-to-use packages and stand-alone tools for smoothing the transition.

Webinar No.2 (April 24, 2020):  webinar on online project management tools – digital solutions (software) that help you and your teams plan, execute and track your projects in real time and allow every team member get full information on a project in one place and stay on track.

We will soon announce our next webinars, please keep an eye on our website!

List of Digital Tools

Title & link Main application Key features Limitations
Tools for remote teams work
Google Package For remote work on projects, editing documents online, collecting information and feedback, planning work in a calendar, team communication
  1. Google Docs (incl. Spreadsheets and slides/ presentations)
  2. Google Forms for collecting information and feedback
  3. Google Jamboard for brainstorming (whiteboard)
  4. Google Drive for storage (15 GB free)
  5. Gmail
  6. Google Calendar for planning
  7. Hangouts for team calls and chats
  8. Google Duo for video calls
Google account is needed for all users (it’s free)


Possible to get google for nonprofit and get GSuite

Microsoft Office 365 For remote work on projects, editing documents online, collecting information and feedback, planning work in a calendar, team communication
  1. OutlookMail
  2. Word, Excel and PowerPoint, both online and offline
  3. OneDrive for sharing docs
  4. Teams (chats and video meetings)
  5. Planner (similar to calendar and tasks assignment)
  6. SharePoint (docs management and storage)
Works properly only if the whole team uses the licensed Microsoft Office 360 for Business


Possible to get Office 365 Nonprofit Business from TechSoup

DropBox For cloud storing and editing documents
  1. DropBox Paper (online doc)
  2. Synchronised with Google and Microsoft calendars, works with Trello, Gmail, Slack, Teams…
  3. Can turn any shared folder into a working space, with comments and assigned tasks
  4. Free 2GB per basic account
Used to create conflicting copies when 2+ users edited the same file
MonkeySurvey Collecting information and feedback
  1. Best collection of expert-written survey templates
Free account allows for 10-questions surveys and 40 responses only
Skype For team calls
  1. Free for individual use
  2. Chats and calls/video calls
  3. Polls and files transfer
  4. Calls to phone numbers (paid)
  5. MeetNow option (for those without skype account)
Maximum # for a group call is 50; Skype account and installed app are required
Whereby For team video calls
  1. Video meetings in the browser, no downloads & no logins for guests
  2. Secure and anonymous
Free account allows for 1 room, 4 participants max
Jitsi: Video conferencing with a team
  1. Can be downloaded, adapted and deployed on a CSO’s server
  2. Has a platform for video conferencing
  3. Has desktop and mobile (Android and iOS) applications
As a free open source solution it has some bugs (e.g. unexpected problems with Bluetooth headsets)
Trello Online project management (to-do lists)
  1. Private, team and public boards
  2. Kanban-style list-making with cards, task assignment, progress tracking, commenting, adding documents
  3. Multiplatform: iOS / Android apps for phones, tablets, watches, and Kindle Fire tablets
  4. A large variety of extensions
A free account has some advanced features limited and allows for 1 extension onlyAttached files up to 10 Mb
Freedcamp: Online project management (to-do lists)
  1. Key features: Tasks, Discussions, Calendar, Files, Milestones, Time, and Passwords
  2. Private and public projects
A free account has some advanced features limited and allows for uploading files up to 10 Mb
Asana Online project management
  1. Lists, boards and calendar view by default
  2. Kanban-style list-making with cards, task assignment, progress tracking, commenting, adding documents
  3. Multiplatform: iOS / Android apps
A free account allows for collaborating with up to 15 teammates
Microsoft To-Do (former Wunderlist) Simple online  planner, can work for very small teams
  1. Basic Kanban-style list-making: lists and tasks, documents uploading, assigning tasks, due dates
  2. Web, desktop and mobile apps (for iOS and Windows)
  3. Completely free
  4. Completely synchronised will all Microsoft Office apps
Microsoft account is required (can get for free)
Larger online meetings and webinars
Zoom Zoom is one of the most popular video meeting / video conferencing applications today.
  1. Enable quick adoption with meeting capabilities that make it easy to start, join, and collaborate across any device
  2. Syncs with any calendar system and delivers streamlined video conferencing from desktop and mobile
  3. Enables internal and external communications, all-hands meetings, and trainings through one communications platform
  4. Supports for up to 1,000 video participants and 49 videos on screen
  5. Multiple participants can share their screens simultaneously and co-annotate for a more interactive meeting
  6. End-to-end encryption for all meetings, role-based user security, password protection, waiting rooms, and possibility to place attendee on hold
  7. Possibility to record meetings locally or to the cloud, with searchable transcripts
  8. Supports scheduling or starting meetings from Outlook, Gmail, or iCal
  9. Team chats with groups, searchable history, integrated file sharing, and 10 year archive.
Free account allows only up to 100 users up to 40 min.The optimal professional solution for small teams (Includes 100 participants, meeting duration limit is 24 hrs, advanced user management features, advanced reporting features, 1GB of MP4 or M4A cloud recording, Skype for Business (Lync) interoperability, etc.) costs € 13.99/mo/host


TechSoup has discounts for CSOs (USD 200 per year)

Zoho MeetingZoho Webinars Popular online meeting and webinar solution
  1. No downloads are needed. Allows to launch or join meetings and webinars right from a browser.
  2. Phone audio. In a case of a poor internet connection, it allows joining sessions by dialing in through a phone. Provides 100+ local dial-in numbers and 55+ toll-free numbers to join from different countries
  3. Audio, video, and screen sharing. Allows adding context to a talk by sharing screens, applications, or a connected monitor to deliver presentations and demos.
  4. Meetings/webinars recording. Allows storing and playing recordings online, sharing them with a link, or downloading to any local storage
  5. Allows synchronization meetings to calendars. Possibility to add events to any email calendar as users receive meeting invitations and webinar registration notifications in an inbox. Enables automated syncing of created sessions with Zoho and Google calendars.
  6. Possibility to use iOS or Android app for attending sessions. Possibility of hosting meetings from the iOS app.
  7. Possibility to add app extensions to Chrome and Firefox browsers to start and join meetings easily. Possibility to use the Zoho Meeting Desktop app to overcome browser limitations like permission problems and hardware detection failure
Free account allows only 2 attendees for meetings and 10 for webinars, excludes  international dial-in numbers, keyboard and mouse sharing, meetings/webinars recordings, some nice integrations features, widgets and useful add-ons, etc.The cost of a Meeting solution starts from €8/host/month, the cost of a Webinars solution starts from €15/month for 25 attendees
BigBlueButton BigBlueButton is a web conferencing system designed for online learning
  1. BigBlueButton enables to share audio, slides, chat, video, and desktop with attendees
  2. Built-in polling makes it easy to engage attendees and recording lectures and make them available for later review
  3. Live whiteboard for presenters and groups. When using the whiteboard tool in BigBlueButton, annotations are automatically displayed back to the attendees in real-time. Presenters also have the ability to zoom, highlight, draw and write on presentations making their points clearer to remote students.
  4. Everyone can share a webcam. There is no limit on the number of webcams you can share in a session (only limited by bandwidth).
More tailored for usage in a traditional education.Requires adaptation and installation at a CSO’s server
WebEx This is primarily a video conferencing suite that also caters for webinars and other live events.
  1. Webinars and video conferencing: CSOs can host a wide range of live events, meetings and training sessions.
  2. Chat and brainstorming tools: Interactive whiteboard and other tools for collaboration.
  3. File sharing: The ability to share files and apps for a better workflow.
  4. Call back: Automated calls inviting people to attend your webinar
  5. Nice interactions with other popular applications and lots of great add-ons.
Free version excludes recording transcriptions, limits cloud storage to 1GB.Excludes MP4 meeting recordings

Paid plans start from 12.85€ per month per host

GoToWebinarGoToMeeting GoToWebinar is a popular webinars platform that allows to stream live webinars and send recordings to attendees once it’s finished.
  1. Live webinars: Possibility to host live webinars and share recordings with participants later on.
  2. Custom landing page forms: To encourage people to sign up for  webinars.
  3. Email notifications: To remind people about a webinar event.
  4. Possibility to use live chat, polls and send files to audience members during a webinar.
  5. Analytics: Reporting and analytics on a webinar performance.
It’s a solid platform but it comes with fewer features than many other popular solutions and users don’t get any of the automation or scheduling features of them.Only paid versions. Free trial for 7 days (GoToWebinar)/ 14 days (GoToMeeting)

The main frustration with GoToWebinar is the restrictions on its packages. For example, on the Starter plan, the user is limited to 100 participants per webinar and prices drastically increase if there is a need to increase those limits.

Online streaming
YouTube For live streaming events, lessons, Q&A sessions, etc.
  1. Mobile, desktop and webcam streaming
  2. Has encoder option, to capture content, including desktop, camera, microphone, and more
  3. Public and private events streaming
  4. Events scheduling
  5. Live chat and responses
  1. For verified accounts only (takes up to 24 hours for first live stream)
  2. To live stream on mobile, a channel will need to have at least 1,000 subscribers
Facebook Live For live streaming events, lessons, Q&A sessions, etc. on Facebook
  1. Sharing video from screen, game or external camera
  2. Can go live from a profile, Page, group or event
  3. Scheduling live streams (automatic announcements)
  4. Polls to ask viewers questions during the live video
  1. If using more than a web camera, need to download and install encoder (streaming software)
  2. Limited audience: viewers need to have FB account to watch the live stream
Vimeo For live streaming of events
  1. Live overlay graphics, Q&A and polls, audience chat
  2. Has two options: Vimeo Premium and Vimeo Enterprise
  3. Vimeo Premium gets unlimited streaming in the Vimeo player / unlimited viewers / unlimited events, with each event limited to 12 hours. Good for way to start with streaming
  4. Vimeo Enterprise is the end to end solution for high performance video communications, with dedicated technical support, SLA, training and advanced privacy features.
  5. Next to Vimeo platform, streams to Facebook Live or YouTube
No free plan, starting from USD 75 per month
Twitch Video live streaming service
  1. Leading live streaming video service for video games in the USA
  2. Additional content: music broadcasts, creative content, and more recently, “in real life” streams
  3. Free account allows for live streaming
  4. Has good how-to tutorials
Very specific audience, as mostly concentrated on video games live streaming (including competitions)


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