The very nature of the scarcity of resources makes it compulsory for every individual or business organization to make the most of everything that goes in. Be it the material or labor hours, every organization wants to maximize the productivity for improved profitability.
Survival in today’s highly competitive environment requires growth in Productivity rather than Efficiency. Michael Mankins (2017) writes in his article “Great companies obsess over productivity, not efficiency” for Harvard Business Review (HBR) about the fact that growth is directly related to productivity which is now the focus for big organizations. He writes in his article “Without top-line growth, continuing to wring out greater profits through efficiency has become the managerial equivalent of attempting to squeeze blood from a stone”.
Here he is emphasizing the fact that earnings growth for S&P 500 companies has been falling since the first quarter of 2015 and that efficiency is no longer the factor for improved earnings.
Productivity is the factor that talks about doing more with a given set of inputs which results in growth.
Therefore, I would like to share 10 Productivity Apps in this article which would help businesses to overcome productivity challenges. These apps can be used by a wide range of businesses to manage and organize their business activities for improved productivity.
An amazing application for those who want to manage their to-do list effectively. Many executives struggle to deal with their complex routine tasks and keep track of the progress. Todoist allows for easy creation and management of tasks by assigning priorities. Keeping track of goals and progress is made easy with reporting features of this application. The application works seamlessly with commonly used operating systems such as Windows, Android, Mac, iOS, and also with browsers such as Chrome, Safari, and Firefox.
Users can enjoy free versions while the paid versions are quite affordable with $3 or $5 per month plans. The cross-platform interface of this application is user-friendly and allows convenient management of tasks.
We know that effective communication and coordination is always a challenge when we work from remote or distant places. This may hinder the productivity of teams who struggle to work remotely. Slack offers an amazing communication and coordination solution to the organization that has remote teams working to achieve organizational goals. This messaging platform allows team members to join communication channels and leave when the work is done to avoid unnecessary messages.
One can also chat separately without interrupting project or task-based channels hence avoiding interruptions. Along with instant messaging, team members can easily drag and share files and documents. The application also allows voice and video calls for added clarity and coordination. Not only this, but users can also share their screens with other team members for real-time collaboration. This application works fine with all operating systems and can be used on the web.
Free versions are available but we would recommend going for paid versions. The standard version is available at $6.67 per month, Slack Plus is available for $12.50 per month and big organizations can also avail their Enterprise Grid solution.
Also, Read — 12 High-Powered Slack integrations You Need to Try
Another handy application that allows work on projects in a much manageable and coordinated way. Trello is a user-friendly project management application that keeps your teams functioning collaboratively and productively. The visual layouts are very engaging and easy to understand.
Team members can add tasks with different statuses such as to-do, going, and done. This helps to track progress and everyone can focus on deadlines. Users can group tasks into boards and cards which offers a fun and effective way of managing multiple tasks. The dashboard view allows the creation of tasks and their easy management by inviting team members to work collaboratively. Real-time instant messaging makes coordination easy and effective.
One can use this application for free and once familiar can go for paid versions. Business Class version is available for $12.50 per user per month and Enterprise version is available for $20.83 per user per month up to 300 users. If the users increase from 300, the price per user keeps on decreasing.
We are used to working with spreadsheets and know how effective they are in managing big data. Microsoft Excel is widely used to get done with tons of data with its functionality. Airtable is another application that is built on the spreadsheet format with added functionality, attractive interface, and ease of use. This application takes less time to master for those who are familiar with Microsoft Excel. Works fine with all windows, Mac, Android, and iOS devices.
Users can create and assign statuses to tasks along with notes to add clarity. Project management is made easy with the use of Dynamic fields. Spreadsheets were not available in different view options previously but thanks to Airtable, spreadsheets can now be viewed as grid, calendar, gallery, and Kanban. Instant messaging makes coordination smooth and easy. Free, Plus, Pro, and Enterprise versions are available. Plus costs $10 per user per month billed annually, Pro costs $20 per user per month billed annually and Enterprise version comes with amazing features and the pricing is shared individually to the organizational representative.
Communication plays a vital role in uplifting the performance of any organization especially when teams are working from remote destinations. The very nature of being distant makes it difficult to collaborate and bring up productivity. Doodle is one of the most widely used applications for collaborative work on projects where remote team working is involved.
Team members can set their availability and the application automatically adapts for time zones. Reminders prove handy and personal events can also be created if everyone on the team is not required.
The application allows users to integrate it with other calendar apps keeping the privacy intact. This helps other team members to view available times and the related details regarding scheduled meetings only.
Users can avail of a 14-day free trial to get familiar. Starter package costs $4.49/month per user paid annually, Pro package costs $5.99/month per user paid annually, Team package costs $30.00/month for 5 users paid annually and the Enterprise package which includes all premium features is also available.
We all have access to the calendar by Google but that does not provide us with advanced features that we require at the workplace. Working in complex environments and coordinating with teams from different parts of the world required a bit more than usual. Calendar is one of the handiest and feature-rich apps that helps grow productivity.
Users can connect and integrate all their calendars into a single and user-friendly interface which makes managing things very easy. Events from different calendars are synced in one place for added convenience. Analytics reports prove vital in increasing productivity and tracking progress. The Basic version is available for free and Pro Version is charged at $8/month.
Project management requires a lot of coordination as many teams are involved. Taskade is a very useful project management tool that offers a visual platform for tracking and managing tasks. Team members can toggle multiple views and can edit on the spot to keep the project updated.
Visual management and assignment of tasks help in keeping a clear track of activities and their progress. Messaging and video calls increase coordination amongst team members and the calendar offers a tool to stay on track. This app works fine with Mac, iOS, Windows, Android, and the web. Users can create three projects for free. An unlimited package is available for $5/month per user billed annually and $9/month per user billed monthly.
Our workday consists of multiple tasks and a list of activities to be done. This involves the use of many apps and systems to assist us in our work. Zapier is one of the most widely used work automation apps that allows users to connect different apps. This application automates the flow of information between many web apps which makes work easy.
This workflow automation tool shared data between apps such as Doodle and Airtable. As soon as data is entered into Airtable, the application automatically updates Doodle as soon as the meeting ends. Users can easily use this app on Windows, Android, iOS, Mac, and the web.
We require tons of information regarding our work activities daily. Proper documentation and record-keeping is an integral part of anything we do at work. Notion provides a very convenient solution to the creation of a central knowledge database for important documents and files. This app integrates with other apps and provides a central interactive interface that caters to the information needs of multiple team members.
Users can easily create and share documents with remote teams promptly. Customization is allowed at all levels so that team members can create Kanban boards and schedules as per their own needs. As we continue to use different productivity apps, Notion aims to integrate and provide a central location that serves as a central knowledge hub for all.
This application is built to work smoothly with Windows, iOS, Mac, and Android. Notion for personal needs is offered for free. Whereas Personal Pro version costs $4/month, the Team version costs $8/month per member, and Enterprise version pricing is based on the organizational needs.
Dealing with emails daily can become a daunting job. With so many emails flowing in, many executives find it difficult to manage their email effectively. At times some important email is missed while unimportant emails consume so much of the productive time. Spark is one of the best solutions to turn your inbox into a much organized and categorized space. This app intelligently manages your emails in a way that keeps important emails visible and on high priority while filtering unimportant emails.
This application categorizes emails, sets alarms, helps in scheduling and assigning emails to team members. Users can easily find emails with the smart search option and can get rid of unwanted emails with smart clean up. Notifications are also smartly dealt popping only for urgent and important matters. Another important feature is that team members can simultaneously work on the same email while the coordinate through instant messaging service offered by this application. This saves time and reduces the frequency of emails circulated resulting in increased clarity.
Users can run this app on Mac, iOS and Android devices for improved productivity. The Free version offers 5 GB space for the whole team. Premium version offers 10 GB space for an individual team member and costs $6.39/month per active user if billed annually or $7.99/month per active user if billed monthly. Enterprise version comes with exclusive features designed as per the needs of the company and its size.
These apps will help our readers in dealing with their productivity issues in a much convenient and effective way. It is all about achieving higher levels of output with a set amount of effort and resources put into a business cycle. Time management is of the essence and we recommend our readers to go through 12 Time Tracking Software To Improve Team Productivity. This read will put light on the time management aspect at the workplace which plays a vital role in dealing with productivity-related issues.
The quest to find work and personal life balance for business executives is becoming harder by the day. However, the importance of having a fair and healthy work-life balance is important to keep productivity at optimum levels. It is important to understand that working for extended hours can lead to fatigue, lower levels of morale, and decreased productivity. Our readers can get extremely helpful tips regarding achieving work-life balance from article 5 Time Tracking Apps to Improve Your Work-Life Balance. These apps will allow our readers to effectively manage their time and ultimately approach towards finding the best work-life balance.
While speaking about today’s businesses and their survival, it is imperative to notice their productivity levels.
Be it the investors, employees, vendors, creditors or any associated party to the business, level of productivity is one of the most important factors to consider while building a relationship. The businesses which can showcase a strong urge to continuously uplift their productivity attract many stakeholders. However, doing so is not an easy job.
Recommended Reading — The Ultimate Master List of 150+ Productivity Hacks and Tips
Technological advancements and creative ideas in the form of software, apps, and systems allow businesses to overcome challenges for sustainable growth. The applications shared here can be used by a variety of businesses from different industries.
Synergy could be created by putting some of these apps to use effectively. Achieving higher levels of productivity also depends on the ability of management to make the most out of these apps keeping in view their specific requirements, limitations, and resources.