I rely on apps for pretty much everything these days. They tell me when my bills are due, they bring me breaking news, they keep me up to date on sports scores and they keep me productive and efficient in both my personal and professional lives. The wealth of information available to us through the internet is staggering, and apps have emerged as simple, intuitive ways to sift through the noise and discover the information that is most relevant to us at any given time.
Whether it’s keeping track of the grocery list or my work assignments, productivity apps are my key to staying informed, organized and on track. Here are the productivity apps that I can’t imagine my days without:
I’ve quite frankly lost track of the number of different to-do list and task management apps I’ve tried at one point or another. It’s rare that a to-do list app’s features, functionality and aesthetics all come together in a satisfying enough way to keep me engaged long-term. Any.do, however, is the current champion of my to-do list. It’s got a slick interface, and intuitive gestures and task entering. However, the stand-out feature for me is something they call the “Any.do Moment;” at a set time every day (9 am for me, but adjustable in settings), Any.do prompts me to schedule out my day. It presents all of my tasks for the day, one at a time, and lets me accept them, postpone them, mark them as done or delete them. It’s like having a friendly digital assistant to keep me on task every single day.
Asana is a full-featured task and project management platform, designed to help teams collaborate. However, I use it as an individual and have found it to be just as powerful for keeping track of my personal work schedule as it is for teams of coworkers. It’s incredibly easy to enter tasks, organize my deliverables by project and keep tabs on deadlines with email notifications and Asana’s mobile app. One of my favorite features of Asana is a powerful set of keyboard commands and hotkeys for entering, rearranging, scheduling and deleting tasks. If you’re checking out Asana, I’d definitely recommend taking the time to learn some of the keyboard shortcuts—they’re a huge time saver!
With my manager and several members of my team working out of different offices (in different states) than I do, effective virtual collaboration is essential to my workday. It would be difficult to overstate how much time and effort iMeet saves me and my team. A quick chat, brainstorm or collaboration session is never more than a click away, and we can even easily hop into each other’s iMeet rooms from our tablets or smartphones if we’re on the go. We never have to fumble with downloads, clunky schedulers or dial-in numbers and passcodes.
4) Google Now
More of an always-on assistant than a true productivity app, Google Now has drastically changed the way I stay abreast of important information throughout my day—and it’s done it with almost no effort on my part past turning it on. If I order something online, it automatically provides package tracking and delivery information. If I book a flight or even simply Google a flight number, it provides up-to-date flight status information and notifications. If I have an off-site meeting, it will automatically tell me when I need to leave based on current traffic conditions. This level of contextually relevant information is the future of mobile apps, providing the right information to the right people at the right time.
What about you? What apps can you not get through your day without? Sound off in the comments or tweet us @PGi.
Interested in more information on the future of productivity and collaboration? Download PGi’s free eBook “The Future of Business Collaboration” today.
Photo courtesy of Any.do