Technology plays an important role in a business’s success in this digital age. Technology has come so far that businesses see it as not only helpful, but critical to their day to day operations. Productivity tools, in particular, have made the running of businesses easier and are not an important part of any business owner’s arsenal. Below we are going to look at some notable productivity tools you should be using in your business.
Customer Relationship Management Software
Managing customer data can be a nightmare if you do not have the tools to help you do it. You might end up wasting a lot of time, time that you could have used managing your business, closing deals, or solving customer issues. A customer relationship management (CRM) software can help you in this regard.
When choosing a CRM, ensure it integrates with other tools such as your email marketing tools, and that it can be used by multiple staff members at the same time. Also, it should be able to track your customers from the time they become potential leads to the time they complete a purchase or close a deal with you. Find out more about the pros and cons of salesforce here.
File Sharing Program
Every business will need to share numerous or large files sometimes. Although email might work for this use case, you would waste a lot of time sending emails and then managing email threads if you need to send messages back and forth. Using a file sharing program such as Dropbox allows you to send large or numerous files to multiple people if you so wish. This way, the files are readily available should you or anyone else need them, and you get the added benefit of not having to deal with email threads.
One critical task of any business owner is assigning tasks to different employees. A business owner should be able to track and monitor these tasks and this is where kanban software comes in. A kanban board allows a business owner, project manager, and team member to visualize the flow of tasks during the development of a product or service.
When using Kanban boards, tasks are placed in different columns as they are added or worked on. These columns can include tasks that are yet to be done, those in review, and those that have been completed. Additionally, Kanban boards let business owners or project managers see what different team members are working on and prioritize tasks by moving them to the top of the pile.
Many business owners have been using physical kanban boards, but these present a whole host of problems. For example, when there are too many cards on the board, it can become harder to manage. Also, once a task is removed from the board and the card discarded, it is almost impossible to go back to see what has already been worked on.
It is also impossible for remote teams to coordinate because they do not have access to the board. Online kanban boards sort all these problems while making it easier to manage tasks no matter where team members are located. A Kanban board online from a company like Kanbanize can be accessed from anywhere as long as the team member has an internet connection. Kanbanize has a great online kanban software that helps both remote and in-office teams manage tasks and visualize their workflow.
Social Media Management and Scheduling
Social media has emerged as one of the most important tools a business can use in its marketing and advertising campaigns. The only problem is that managing your social media accounts at all times can waste a lot of time, thereby reducing your productivity.
Social media management and scheduling tools help you schedule posts at times when you know your audience is online. This ensures maximum visibility and therefore better engagement whenever one of your posts goes live.
Tools like Hootsuite make it easy to manage all your social media accounts from one dashboard so you do not have to open different tabs to do it all.
Invoicing gets complicated when you have to chase down different customers and clients to make a payment. It also gets frustrating when your customers want to pay but there is no easy way to do it. Using an invoicing platform like FreshBooks makes it easy to send invoices and bills to customers as well as receive credit card and PayPal payments.
FreshBooks also comes with a project estimates tool where you can create and send estimates for goods and services. If you run a small business and do not want to waste a lot of time chasing down payments, generating invoices, and estimates, you should try this tool.
In this digital age, it would be a bad idea to ignore the benefits productivity tools bring your business. Taking advantage of what these tools have to offer ensures you have enough time to focus on what is important, i.e. running your business.