Organise your work…
For most people over a quarter of their time each week is spent commuting to work, being at work and commuting home from work. It stands to reason that we would want to use every available tool to make that time productive and as enjoyable as possible. With so many apps out there it can be puzzling to choose ones that will be helpful and actually do what they say they will do. To help take the guesswork out, this list was compiled of those that can actually make the time spent at work a bit easier and even a bit more fun.
Wunderlist is more than a great work tool as it will help anyone become better organized even in those hours not spent at work. Managing to-do lists and sharing them with friends, family and colleagues couldn’t be easier. A great feature is that it easily syncs with all devices including your home or office computer. This is especially helpful for those that tend to bring work home with them or need to keep in contact 24/7 with a work team on various projects. It is completely free to sign up for and use Wunderlist. For those that want to go a step farther they offer a Pro version that includes features such as attaching files to to-do lists, adding unlimited subtasks, and assigning to-dos to other team members. The Pro version is a monthly $4.99 or annual $49.99 subscription.
2. LogMeIn and LogMeIn Ignition
It has often been a problem for people that also work at home to juggle documents between home and the office. While it may not happen often it can be a real headache to get to work only to find that you need a file that is on your home computer. LogMeIn may not be an app that one would use every day but it can certainly be a lifesaver. By setting up the program on any computer you may need access to you can remotely access it using your mobile device. This means you can pull up files just for reference, actually edit them on the computer and then open your email program and send it to wherever you need to. There are also uses that can be handy for anytime such as wanting to show someone a picture or video that is on your home computer or even checking to see what is going on at home if you have kids that might be on the computer. New accounts get to enjoy the Pro features for free for a limited time as well. Pro is reasonably priced at $19.99 for 3 months, $29.99 for six months or $39.99 for an annual subscription.
Evernote is a wonderful tool for work and for life in general. Companies are finding Evernote Business to be a tool to put into the hands of their employees even so before you sign up for a Premium version subscription plan check with your employer to see if they might already have the business version available. You might even earn a pat on the back if you suggest it to them if they aren’t using it. The features of Evernote are above and beyond most organizational tools out there because information and data in any format gets compiled into one place and can be accessed from just about anywhere besides. Organize projects, share knowledge with team members, locate ideas you jotted down months ago with fast search capability and keep on top of things with detailed to-do lists. This app does it all.
4. Mint.com Personal Finance
Mint is an app to help you keep track of what you spend in order to keep to a budget. It can be used for personal budgets or for keeping track of expenditures to put on an expense report for your job. A great way to help you manage your money while on the go. It won’t replace a regular bookkeeping program but it does a decent job for a free app. The app syncs with Mint.com on the web and mobile so you always have access to your account so you can have the most recent information right at your disposal. The app is protected by a passcode and since you have the ability to deactivate mobile access from the web page you can prevent unauthorized access easily.
Lunch hours can often be difficult to juggle into a day at many workplaces – either there isn’t time to get away or nobody can find the takeout menus. GrubHub comes to the rescue! Currently available in over 500 cities it is a great app for not only locating a place to get some grub but also lets you order online for delivery or carry out. For those creatures of habit out there, past orders are saved so in just a couple taps you can repeat an order in the future. Why spend any part of your precious lunch break on the process of getting a lunch? Using this app takes mere seconds and your food can be on your way.
6. Genius Scan
Genius Scan turns your mobile device into a pocket scanner enabling users to quickly scan documents and anything else on the go and then email the scans as JPEG or PDF. They can also be exported as PDF to iBooks or any other app that uses PDF files. Think of the many ways this could be useful for work such as scanning receipts to email in for reimbursement, share handwritten notes with coworkers, document visuals from meetings and more. For just a small fee you can upgrade to Genius Scan+ to remove ads and also be able to print with AirPrint, use customizeable email signatures and export to Evernote, Google Docs, Dropbox, Expensify, SkyDrive.
A lot of businesspeople feel overwhelmed by the sheer number of business cards that they receive and have to keep handy. It can be frustrating to manage them all and then put their hands on the right card at the right time. CamCard is the perfect answer to this dilemma as it not only reads business cards and instantly puts them in the phone’s Contacts, it also syncs across smartphones, tablets, computers and the web app. Not only is this great for the person using the app but it saves on business cards being handed out by all those you come in contact with because you can simply scan it and then give it back to them to reuse. The regular version is free to use and if you register you can scan 1,000 cards for free and 100 extra cards per week after first launch. There is also an HD version.
Apple (Dragon Dictation): https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/dragon-dictation/id341446764?mt=8
Apple (Dragon Go): https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/dragon-go!/id442975871?mt=8
Android (Dragon Personal Assistant): https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.nuance.balerion
Dragon Dictation for iPhone is a speech recognition app that is handy for speaking your texts and email messages along with dictating status updates to social networking apps or making notes for yourself. Great for business people on the go or for those that simply hate typing things out on their phone. Dragon Go! For iPhone allows users to use their voice for mobile web commands. Dragon Personal Assistant for Android is a personalized voice-enabled virtual assistant. The Dragon line of products is powered by Dragon® NaturallySpeaking® which has been used by business people for years. They can be a huge time saver for a number of business activities every day.
Android: not available
A number of people in business deal with PDF files regularly and find they are at a loss on how to best use these files in the course of their work day. Often a document needs to be more than simply read – it often needs revisions before it is disseminated. It is easy enough to handle this when on a desktop computer but when on the go it can be more challenging. This is where GoodReader comes in. With GoodReader users can annotate by highlighting, drawing such things as lines and arrows, freehand draw and place sticky notes. All notes created with GoodReader on the document will be visible once it is sent back to a computer. Besides this great feature, users can also use the app in order to read PDF files more easily with the ability to reflow the text. Users may love the features on this so much that they will transfer every PDF they already have to their device for future use.
10. Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock
Android: not available
It doesn’t do much good to have all the above tools for work if you can’t get out of bed in the morning to get there. It also doesn’t do much good if you are cranky from being jolted out of bed by an alarm annoying enough to wake the dead. This is where a quality alarm clock app comes to the rescue. The Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock is different from other alarm apps. The app uses 15 carefully selected alarm tones (or your music selection) that awakens the users at the best time in their sleep cycle – the lightest sleep phase. The app uses the accelerometer in your iPhone to monitor your movement to determine which sleep phase you are in throughout the night. The app also keeps track of your sleep habits during the night so you can pull up statistics about your sleep quality. You can even export sleep data to Excel for analysis purposes. Over time when you document changes in your day such as exercise level, stress level and coffee/alcohol consumption you may be able to find a pattern that tells you how to improve your percentage of quality slumber.
Whether you are self-employed, a CEO or somewhere in between the above apps can help you make your day more organized and productive. Anything that saves time or adds enjoyment to your day is a tool of worth. Hence, the above apps are not listed in any special order because they are all equally valuable.