Have you ever wondered how successful people and businesses manage their workload? Many of them always seem to be their most productive selves and are always on top of their responsibilities.
That’s the way it may seem, but it’s not like these people operate by themselves. They usually employ the help of other individuals, but an even better option for them is to use productivity tools to help them stay on track.
Yes, if there is one thing that has become easily accessible in today’s world, it’s the many tools and apps we can install on all our devices and use to structure our day. These tools can vary slightly, but their end goal is always to help us be as productive as possible.
So, what are productivity tools? If you have been struggling with finding motivation or staying consistent, we recommend looking into a few options. They can be life-changing. Most of them come at no extra cost and are so easy to use that you will wonder why you did not start using them sooner.
To learn more about these tools and their awesome features, stick around for the rest of the guide!
What are Productivity Tools?
Productivity tools can help people keep their productivity at a high level while also allowing them to stay organized and coordinated when working with a remote team. These tools have many features that help with all aspects of a worker’s life, not just productivity.
Since these tools have become widely used in the past few years, companies have been rapidly developing new ones to try and include as many useful features as possible. Nowadays, there are also productivity apps, software programs, various services, etc.
We will dive into these types of productivity tools and their key features in the following sections, so make sure you also stick around!
What Types of Productivity Tools Exist?
As mentioned, the demand for productivity programs and services has steadily grown over the past few years. This is especially the case when you consider how many companies have decided to work remotely following the coronavirus pandemic.
Working in an office with dozens of people can be stressful and challenging to manage at times. Sometimes the stress can increase when you’re left working from home, where you have no way to stay in touch with everyone.
This is where these tools come into the conversation, as they are a great way to keep everyone on the same page. Here are only some of the tools that you will come across if you try looking for the best type of tool to help boost your productivity:
Tools for time management
The first and most important tool to help boost productivity is the time management tool. This tool allows you to write down all pending tasks, highlighting or separating the high-priority ones from the low-priority ones. This helps you have a clear view of your tasks and how much time you have to do them all.
A helpful tool you can also look into is the time tracking tool, which can be accompanied by a screen monitor. Having your screen monitored at all times might sound creepy, but at least it can intimidate you into working and not getting distracted by videos or similar things.
Tools for scheduling
Another tool that we recommend to every worker is a scheduling tool. It can be a private or a work schedule where you get to see what everyone is working on. Some schedules also come with the option to have multiple schedules with varying access.
The scheduling tool is a great way to keep up to date with all pending tasks and scheduling things like automatic social media content posting. If you are managing a team, it can also be a great way to divide tasks among all your workers and have a clear overview of how everyone’s work is progressing.
Tools for communication
Managing or being a part of a remote team means you can’t have in-person meetings whenever needed. So, you need a communication tool that gives you instant access to your co-workers without anyone commuting to a set meeting location.
The good thing is that communication tools have significantly evolved over the past years. These days, they allow real-time calls, video calls, and team chats that keep clients and co-workers in touch from anywhere in the world. If nothing else, it’s a great way to help everyone stay coordinated.
Tools for team/project management
If you have a large project and you need help setting deadlines, separating the workload between people, or even dealing with the deliverables, then you can always download a project management tool. Tools like these combine all the above-mentioned features, allowing you to coordinate your team and make a schedule for everyone to see.
Some of these tools have a limit to the number of members you can have in a single account. Some require a specific fee for adding more members or accessing varying features. However, this is not always the case. Regardless, companies and teams can easily find tools to give them complete control over everything without the added expenses.
Tools for performance enhancement
Finally, you can find many tools for performance enhancement. These are great for everyone, not just working people. You can also use them to stay productive while studying or dealing with mundane tasks.
Most of the time, they allow you to set personal tasks and track progress over time. So, they’re undoubtedly a great thing to have on your phone or computer to stay organized and improve your performance.
Features to Look for in Productivity Tools
As you would expect, each new tool released on the market has something that separates it from the competition. They usually promise stellar performance and advanced features that would help people improve their productivity. What is often the case is that people get tied up in all the features and end up with a platform they cannot manage or do not want to bother with.
Whether you need a simple tool to manage routine tasks or a platform to manage an entire enterprise, you need only five features. Here is a bit more on the most important features you should think about when selecting your preferred productivity software:
Safety and Security
If you need project management software where you will be sharing sensitive information, you will need the software to come with certain safety features. You’d need to look for one that helps protect your documents and workers from possible cyber attacks.
Extra security features are also recommended for those using online platforms to manage payroll or store their employees’ bank information.
The safest thing to do is go with a platform that has top-tier encryption protocols and various safety features that protect data and store it where attackers can’t get to it.
You need a reliable platform that will keep your work as stress-free as possible. Even if you are dealing with repetitive tasks you have managed millions of times before, a reliable platform is key to delivering your work easily and timely.
Another thing to consider is that the platform is available on all devices. It would be a nightmare to use an app that keeps crashing and makes you repeat the same things repeatedly. You need the platform to be reliable across all devices to save time and effort.
Ease of use and navigation
It might sound silly, but it’s also important to look for a productivity application or platform that is as simple as possible. When dealing with serious tasks or workloads for multiple people, you should avoid using a complicated platform that everyone might not know how to read.
The platform should have a clear layout with only the necessary features set in a menu. The user interface should be easy enough for a toddler to use. There should be a search bar to help everyone with features they cannot easily find.
If possible, the platform should allow you to attach names, files, and feedback to a single person. This is especially the case if you use it for coordination and communication between team members.
The platform should also be scalable, meaning you should be able to add unlimited users without having to pay extra. Some of these task management platforms allow only a limited number of users to be included for free. They might require users to purchase a premium plan if they want to add more users or extra features.
This is something to consider from the beginning, depending on how many people are on your team and whether you plan on adding more in the future. That will help you determine whether a premium plan with extra features is the right choice for you or your company.
Finally, it’s crucial for the platform or platforms you use to allow you to integrate other tools. For example, if you are using a simple scheduling tool but need to add a communication tool to it, you need both platforms to have integration capabilities so you can connect them.
The alternative is to go with a completely new platform with all the features you need. This option, however, might mean hours and hours of preparing the platform for your workers. Consider the time it takes to transfer all the files you already have on the platform you used previously.
That is everything you need to know to answer the burning question: What are productivity tools? Now you can put them to good use if you need to boost the productivity of your entire company. Remember that while there are separate tools for all your needs, the best option is to go for a single platform that offers all the features.
If you know of any fantastic productivity platforms you would recommend to interested business people, please mention their names and key features in the comments. We would love to know more about the platforms and features you use most, so don’t hesitate to share all about your experience too!