The Top Seven Productivity Tools
The majority of workers now have access to an unprecedented amount of information and computing power. In theory, this access should make it much easier to get through day to day tasks, but in practice our workloads have expanded almost as rapidly as time-saving tools have been developed. In addition, distractions from email, social media and instant messaging tools make it hard to stay productive throughout the day. Check out this list of handy productivity tools that will help to save you time and keep you focused whether you work for a small business or from home.
Trello is the ultimate project management tool that will help you to organize group projects making it perfect for smaller businesses or teams. Use Trello to create project “boards” which make it easy to see at-a-glance who is working on each part of a project, and how far along it is.
Evernote is a must-have note taking tool that allows you to save snippets of text and audio, as well as images and photographs, to the cloud. Evernote is available as a web based app, a browser extension and a mobile app, so you will never have to be without your notes, no matter where you are.
3. Google Drive
Google drive is a powerful tool for file sharing, storage and collaboration. You can upload documents that you have made in other programs and share them with friends and colleagues, or create documents using Google’s own cloud based office apps. This is a wonderful tool for anyone working out of the office or from home as you can access any documents you need from any location.
With the sheer number of web apps that we use today, it can be all too tempting to recycle passwords. Using the same password for multiple services is bad practice, but the alternative – writing passwords down or getting locked out of accounts because you forgot your login details, is not appealing either. LastPass solves this problem by storing all of your passwords in one secure place. All you need to do is remember your LastPass login, and let the LastPass app handle everything else for you. LastPass really is the last password you will ever need to remember.
5. White Noise Lite
White Noise Lite is a free tool for mobile devices that generates white noise, helping to block out distracting sounds so that you can focus on the task at hand. If white noise doesn’t work for you, consider downloading Spotify and using it to play unobtrusive instrumental music. Avoid anything with lyrics, so that you resist the urge to stop and listen to your favourite songs! This tool is fantastic for people who work in smaller businesses that have open plan layouts or for anyone working from home who might need to switch to work mode and avoid household distractions.
6. YAST Time Tracker
Yast is perhaps the most popular time tracker available today. Use this tool to track how much time you spend on various tasks. Tracking the way you spend your day can be quite illuminating, and will help you to find ways to save time and stay motivated. This is especially handy for anyone working from home that finds it hard to keep track of their workday hours or needs more structure.
7. Strict Workflow
Strict Workflow is a simple tool that uses the Pomdoro technique to help you get work done. This tool will force you to work for 25 minutes at a time, blocking access to time-wasting sites during that period. When the 25 minutes are up, you will be rewarded with a five minute break, during which time you can do whatever you please.