Sure, you can keep organized at the office with a notebook and pen, a pile of sticky notes, and a paper calendar. But we’re in the smart phone age now, and more sophisticated tech-based options are available. From fancy timers to mobile to-do lists, discover the best apps to help you get more done at work.
Create Meetings and Browse Your Schedule from Anywhere: A calendar can do so much more than simply keep you on schedule. That’s why you want to make sure your calendar travels with you everywhere you go. Sunrise (iOS/Android) allows you to bundle together multiple calendars, so you can see your personal to-dos, work events, and even Facebook friends’ birthdays, all in one place. Another popular calendar app is Quick.cal (iOS/Android), which makes it easy to create new events using everyday language (e.g., “team meeting at noon tomorrow”), and also consolidates all your calendars into one spot.
See how your calendar can help you boost productivity.
Track Time Easily: The 30/30 app, available only for the iPhone/iPad, is a must-download for people with short attention spans, those who respond well to alarms, breaks, and reminders, or fans of the Pomodoro Technique, which cycles between timed tasks and breaks. The app allows you to easily schedule blocks of time for the main tasks of the day. A timer goes off at the end of each task, reminding you to start on the next. It’s ideal for workers with a big client lists, or with several frequently-repeated tasks per day.
More Effective Note-Taking: Skip searching desperately for a pen, scribbling notes on the back of meeting print-outs, or using the notes function on your phone (only to be unable to find the note later on). Evernote is one of the most popular apps in this category (iOS/Android), allowing users to save notes, articles, and more in one easy spot. Other options include Letterspace (iOs only) and Google Keep (Android only).
Keep Your To-Do List Mobile: There’s no denying the satisfaction of a written out to-do list, with every item completed, and crossed out. Still, app-based to-do lists offer certain advantages: you can’t lose them, and so long as you have your phone, your lists will be readily accessible. The Due App (iOS only) is a great option for repeating reminders — send out the agenda for your weekly meeting, prepare the end-of-quarter reports, etc. Any.do (Android/iOS) syncs easily from desktop to mobile to tablet, allowing you to easily see tasks, collaborate with co-workers, and make both daily and long-term to-do lists.
Manage Email: Many email apps go far beyond the built-in app on your smart phone. Mailbox (iOS/Android) prioritizes inbox zero, making it easy to whittle through your lists of emails. Google Inbox (iOS/Android) predicts the importance-level of emails, from spam to action-needed, and gives you the ability to snooze emails. Finally, Outlook’s entry in the app game (Android/iOS) is surprisingly strong: like Inbox, it helps prioritize important emails, and it also makes bulk mail management easy. And, unlike other mail apps, it boasts a strong built-in calendar.
If you’re so buried under emails, an app can’t save you, find out how to gain control over your email.
Bonus — A Website to Automate Your Apps: IFTTT (which stands for “If This Then That”) allows you to make what it calls recipes that act as shortcuts for common actions. When you enter an item on your to-do list, do you also want to assign a reminder on your calendar? IFTT will help you set that up, so it happens automatically. IFTTT can also automatically send all attachments to Google Drive (or Dropbox or Box) so that you always can easily search them out, track mileage for work-related travel, and much more.
More Tips for Office Productivity:
- Motivational Tips When You’d Rather Be Napping
- Boost Your Productivity with Your Calendar
- Write Emails That Get Read