Increasing productivity and becoming more organised are often at the top of everyone’s list for starting the new year strong.
In business, organisation and productivity go hand in hand. If you’re looking to step yours up a few notches, there are a variety of cloud tools and software which can supercharge your productivity.
These are our top 10 business tools picks:
Trello is a task management system, ideal for delegating work and keeping track of what needs doing within a team. Use it for project management as well as day to day duties. In Trello, you can create ‘boards’ filled with ‘cards’ making it easy to group relevant information and ensure tasks are organised and easy to find.
A way to connect with team members or colleagues, Slack is a workplace messaging system, allowing you to communicate via messages. You can create multiple chats, one for the whole office and perhaps one for a smaller project. As well as being quick to use, Slack claims it can reduce email by up to 80%.
Like the Microsoft Office suite but with extra features, Google Docs is free for personal use and incredibly valuable when collaborating with team members. You can provide access to documents via a link and select whether the other person can edit or view only. Any changes made will reflect instantly in the document, and you can access it from anywhere with your Google Account. The software saves changes automatically, so losing work never happens.
Google Slides and Sheets have the same features, allowing you to create presentations or spreadsheets and share them easily online – perfect for a virtual office.
Sending large files by email is never fun, and sometimes downright impossible depending on the size. Dropbox is a cloud-based storage system where you can upload files and folders and share them with others. Collaborate with team members who have Dropbox by sharing the file or create a link to share with others via email. You can choose whether the recipient can view, download or edit the file, and you can access your files from anywhere simply by logging in.
Short for ‘If This Then That’, IFTTT is a free web-based service which can link apps and devices, making them work together automatically. For example, you can set it up, so an action on one app triggers something in another. While the ways that you use this are endless, some popular uses include:
- If you make a call on your phone, a log of it will be sent to your email
- Automatically set your phone to silent when a meeting is happening via Google Calendar
- Get Uber receipts sent to an expenses app
‘Recipes’ are created in the app and take time to set up, but the extra time saved is worth it!
Basecamp is a type of project management software like Trello but with more complexity. Use Basecamp to assign tasks to team members, keep track of a project’s current status and communicate and collaborate with colleagues. Primarily used by web agencies to communicate and work with clients, it’s perfect for managing a large assignment or an involved project.
Sked / Later / Hootsuite
If you use social media for your business, these tools are lifesavers. Organise and schedule your content in advance and the tools will automatically post it for you – especially helpful if you are posting in different time zones. Sked, Later and Hootsuite are all subscription based but worth the investment.
Nothing says rushed quite like spelling errors and grammar mistakes. Ensure everything you write is perfect with Grammarly – a spell checker with smart, built-in grammar functions. The basic version is free, with a premium upgrade also available.
Ever seen an interesting article online but had no time to stop and read it? Pocket is here to help. A Chrome extension and phone app, Pocket saves websites or articles for later – putting your reading material together in one handy location. You can even send articles to a unique email address which will then automatically save it to your Pocket account.
More than just a note-taking website, Evernote is also an app, meaning you can access your notes across multiple devices. It’s perfect for making to-do lists, taking meeting notes, saving web pages and sharing your notes with friends or team members.
Modern businesses are lucky to have access to such helpful cloud-based software and apps, making it easier than ever to increase productivity. If you are returning to study, you’ll find these tools have multiple uses to make life easier. Adopt one of the above tools each month of the year, and you’ll be sure to notice a difference in time saved, and work supercharged.