Technology March 19, 2013 100 Reads share

Productivity Apps: 5 Areas Where They Can Be Maximized

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If you haven’t already noticed, time is getting scarcer nowadays. Some say there’s something about the earth’s magnetic field that causes a time shift. But the more obvious reason that perhaps doesn’t need any scientific explanation is the number of tasks a business or an individual is bombarded with every single day.

Indeed, in this time and age where efficiency is big deal, NOT taking advantage of available productivity applications is a one-way ticket to Frustration Land, or in the case of businesses, profit and income loss.

The Internet has changed the way the productivity game is played forever. One click of a button and you can go through a list of productivity tools and pick the one that you think is right for you. Minutes thereafter, you’re ready to do some stress tests, as a lot of productivity tools available nowadays come with a 30-day free trial, if not a free subscription for life. Cool, eh?

With that out of the way, here are some areas where productivity apps can do a lot of good for you:

# 1. Time management

Time management, if you ask me, is such a lonely phrase. Everybody seems to know too much about it, yet not a lot has quite mastered it. No surprises there. While the Internet and countless breakthroughs in technology can bring much benefit, they can be a huge source of distraction, too – social media sites, gaming applications, messaging platforms, the works.

For those who are unaware, there’s a simple time management technique called Pomodoro Technique where all you need to do are the following:

  • Choose the task to be done and be prepared with a checklist.
  • Set your timer to 25 minutes.
  • Work, work and work until the timer goes off. Mark your checklist with an X. That’s one pomodoro done.
  • Take a five-minute break.
  • After every four pomodoros, take longer breaks.

There are both paid and free Pomodoro Technique apps available for download. There’s a free Google Chrome plugin called Strict Pomodoro. There’s one for iPhones, iPads and iPods and can be accessed via iTunes. And then, there’s the Pomodoro App, a freemium variety for PCs.

# 2. Time tracking

Sure, time is gold. Then again, if you can’t track it, you can’t bill it. Toggl is a web-based time tracking software with an awesome interface. It’s easy to use and works for just about anyone – freelancers, accountants, lawyers, students, et cetera. The pro plan stands at $5 per user per month. But you can get it free if your team has a maximum of five members.

# 3. Remote desktop

Forget Dropbox or Google Drive if you can remotely access your home or work files from anywhere, right? With a remote desktop application, you can do things like file transfer and remote printing, even listen to some of the tracks you’ve saved in your PC’s music folder.

LogMeIn is one such software and allows you to get hold of your work e-mails from your home computer or access files in your home desktop from a coffee shop. LogMeIn can either be free or pro.

# 4. Workflow automation

Automation has that cool ring to it, has it not? But before you become all excited about deploying an automation software in your business, remember that there’s good and bad automation. Automating a task sequence and getting no positive results could mean that your workflow needs some time back on the drawing board or your workflow is better left done manually.

When properly implemented, workflow automation can save you and your business a whole lot of time, money and trouble by making sure all tasks get routed to the right people at the right time, and that targets are met on budget and on schedule.

Comindware offers a broad range of services and solutions spanning different departments in your company: HR, bug tracking, helpdesk, software development, sales and marketing, among others. And yes, you can try the application for 30 days absolutely free.

# 5. Web conferencing 

Rushing to varying locations for business meetings, demos, status updates, et cetera can be taxing. It requires a lot of resources, resources that normally always run low – time, energy and money. While others fault web conferencing for being a tad too impersonal, let’s face it (no pun intended), it gets the job done. And more often than not, magnificently at that.

Popular web conferencing services include the likes of GoToMeeting from Citrix, OmniJoin from Brother, Adobe’s Connect and Cisco’s WebEx. And then there’s good old Skype (which, by the way, needs to be downloaded) and Google+ Hangouts, too.

The above are just five of the many areas where productivity can be maximized using available productivity apps. There’s a whole plethora of productivity apps waiting to be discovered and put to good use. Which ones are you using? How have they turned your life or business around?

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Images:  ”Smartphone with increasing business graph isolated on white background /Shutterstock.com

Maricel Rivera

Maricel Rivera

Maricel Rivera is a freelance business/tech blogger and independent content marketing professional currently working with ZipBooks, free accounting software, and SafeSend, email security software provider. Other software vendors she worked with as content developer and marketer include Comindware and Bitrix24.

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