Sometimes it seems that no matter how much work you do, you still have so much left to finish. Productivity isn’t just a skill, for many businesses, it’s a constant challenge. Between constant meetings and social media notifications, it seems the workplace is rife with distractions.
How can a business consistently get things done? With a few online tools in your arsenal, your team can easily boost its productivity.
At this point, Google Drive has become nearly ubiquitous in the business world, but there are still a handful of companies that have never heard of it. You should see the reaction we got from one client when we showed them real-time collaboration in Google Docs.
Email doesn’t have to be a drag. Mixmax not only simplifies email communications, but it adds a whole layer of analysis that standard email clients don’t offer. Our two favorite features: the ability to check the recipients that open your emails, and the option to send an email at a later time.
From a simple startup to 2018 World Cup sponsorships, it’s hard to imagine a time before an app like Slack. Not only does it make communication faster, it makes it more personal. We love using Slack for keeping track of various projects, sharing music and useful resources, and for direct messaging. Custom GIFs and emojis are a nice touch too.
Slack also supports third-party integrations, and Gratify is just the latest one to watch. Hire vetted experts such as developers and freelancers without having to leave Slack. You can even set up payments using Gratify’s eponymous bot. Gratify is great for quick (or single order) projects with close deadlines, like a time-sensitive press release, translating a document, or a single landing page.
Do you find yourself easily distracted by Facebook, Reddit, and other websites? Limit your time on distractions with StayFocusd, a popular Google Chrome extension. Once the time limit is expired, your access to that site is blocked for the rest of the day, leaving you to focus on your tasks.
Do you have dozens of accounts and subscriptions for your team? Don’t just store sensitive passwords and information in a text file. Secure them in one protected, organized vault called 1Password. This app (available on desktop and mobile) not only tracks each password, but the users that have access to each one, and if they share it with a client.
Focusing on a single task for too long can lead to a burnout. Try the Pomodoro technique. Named after the famous kitchen tomato timers, the Pomodoro technique breaks up the duration of each task into a “Pomodoro”, or 25 minutes. Each completed Pomodoro is broken up by 5-minute breaks. After four “Pomodoros”, you can take a 10-minute break. This technique is a great way to break a big project into manageable chunks.
TIP: make sure to pin the tab you use this on and enable desktop alerts so you don’t lose track of progress.
Nothing says unprofessional like a poorly proofread document. Grammarly has your back. Simply copy and paste (or upload) a document into Grammarly, and it will markdown all spelling and grammar mistakes. Upgrade to premium and it will even give advanced stylistic suggestions. Save yourself countless hours with this app.
Our favorite screenshot tool. Take a quick screenshot of your desktop view, then crop, circle, highlight, annotate, and label your image, all in a few seconds. When you’re done, you can upload it straight to their domain and share the URL.
Ever had a conference call and you had to download some mandatory software, or make an account? UberConference lets us skip through all the hurdles and go straight to a video conference with anyone who has the link. We can even share our screen and hold video chats. Recipients can even join using their phone through a dial-in number. We’ve yet to find a conference app that replaces this one.
Try out these tools and see how they change your workflow. Sometimes a single tool can save hours in accumulated time. Do you have any favorites? Get in touch with us and let us know which tools you use to stay productive!
For more tips on business and digital transformation, visit Arcalea’s blog today.
Arcalea combines marketing professionals and data analysis experts into a single team. We love reading the data, the challenge of "how can we?" and of continuously striving to raise our teammates and client partners to be the best they can be.