Some people work better under a deadline. Well, at least that’s my excuse. Truth be told, many of us are just putting projects away till the very last moment. The reason lies somewhere between the never ending number of projects we all have to work on and – this might be hard to admit – our personalities.
Sometimes you’ll get away with it, other times you won’t. The problem starts when this approach begins to affect the quality of work or even worse – your mental health. Luckily, at times like these, technology may come in handy. And so it does with these 7 time-management apps that could save your time, career, and sanity.
Do you ever find yourself checking your phone every other second for absolutely no apparent reason? Or looking at Facebook or Twitter to see if there any new notifications? One last question – do you like games?
If you’re anything like me, you need some really good motivation to stay focused on any given task. Even as I write this, I’m multitasking – or at least trying to. In any case, not for much longer!
Forest is an app that puts gamification into time-management. It helps you put down your devices and focus on that task you need to finish. Whenever you feel like you should do some work, just plant a tree. It will keep growing for the next 30 – or however you set it -minutes. That is, as long as you don’t you leave the app, and kill it. When it grows fully (meaning you’ve worked for whole half an hour!) it becomes part of your very own, private forest.
What’s also nice is that you can view the whole forest (including the trees you shamefully killed!) to see how much time you’ve devoted to work in a particular period of time. For the time being that’s all, but I really do hope we’ll get to see some new features really soon. Perhaps workers and buildings? That child in me, who spent endless hours playing games like The Settlers would really love this.
Compatibility: iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Web
Their statement says it all – “The to-do list for procrastinators, now available for free”. Do I need to write anything else? I will anyway.
Like any other to-do list app, Finish lets you create tasks, assign deadlines, and check what’s already been completed. What’s interesting about this app however, is the fact that you can create timeframes for your projects. Label them as Short Term (e.g. 0-2 days), Mid Term (e.g. 3-5 days), or Long Term – and observe how tasks slide up through timeframes as time elapses. It’s neat and saves you the “wait, what? was that due today?” moments. If pressure is what you need, this app will help you achieve that state.
You need to schedule events or log hours you’ve spent on a particular job? With Timely you can do both, and not just for yourself, but even for your whole team!
With any business, it’s important to work effectively. You don’t want to spend too much time on projects that generate little or no return. At the same time, you don’t want to accept more projects than you can actually handle. It could affect the quality of your work or overexert your team, and nobody wants that. You can easily avoid that using Timely.
Another worth mentioning fact is that the app integrates well with popular calendar tools. So if you were worried about additional workload caused by transferring all the data to Timely – you can now relax. Everything’s going to be auto-imported as estimated entries, which you can edit later in the app.
Compatibility: iOS, Web
Thought workflows are only reserved for marketing automation and sales? You’ve never been more mistaken. Thanks to Workflow, you can actually automate a big part of your everyday life – and not in the scary robots-taking-over-the-world kind of way.
Although not exactly like in the Groundhog Day, you probably find yourself repeating certain activities almost every day. Calculating the appropriate tip amount? Uploading last taken picture to Twitter or Facebook? Ordering Uber? – does any of that ring the bell?
Well, with Workflow, you can save yourself some time and create automation rules for your everyday life. Use existing rules or create your own to squeeze out the most of your valuable time. What’s also neat, is that you can export your workflows as standalone apps on your home screen. Saving up time much? That’s for sure.
Whether you’re browsing the web to avoid doing work or doing so is actually part of your work (if that’s the case, kudos to you!) you must have been there – finding an interesting article, forgetting about it, and then spending ages trying to find it. You’re not alone on this one.
We’ve all been there. Riding the train, hoping to catch up on some reading, and suddenly bumping into an old friend it would be rude not to talk to. Once the conversation is over, so is the memory of the post or website you were so eager to read. Who knows, maybe it could have inspired you to come up with something amazing. Like an article on time and career saving productivity apps (See what I did there?).
Pocket lets you save websites and articles you wanted to keep for later. You can also add tags, which will shorten your search time even further. If that’s not enough, how about the fact that it’s available across most popular platforms and you can access your links wherever you are? It also integrates well with multiple other applications and offers open API so even power users should feel satisfied.
Compatibility: iOS, Android, Web
Notability makes taking notes even simpler. If you are a professional attending team meetings, entrepreneur coming up with new ideas, or even a student listening to lectures – you should be using this app.
Got an image or a PDF file you want to make notes on? Perhaps you have a design you want to make adjustments to or quickly sketch something up? Maybe you just need to type in the key points from the conversation you’ve just had and forward it your team. You can do all that with Notability, with no fuss.
You might be thinking that it resembles Evernote… and you would probably be right. Although the latter offers more cross platform integration, Notability does one important thing much better. It syncs all your sources into one – allowing you combine audio, scribbled notes, sketches, imported images, and PDFs.
Compatibility: iOS, OSX
I know I’ve mentioned Feedly in one of our previous posts, but it definitely deserves a place on this list as well. So let’s keep it short. If you’re already following a list of blogs or news sites and don’t want to waste time checking if any new articles have been published, look no further. Just stick to Feedly.
It’s an easy-to-use, neatly designed feed reader that helps you keep up-to-date with your favorite news. On top of that, if you spend some time and create appropriate categories, you can quickly identify what’s trending in particular markets or fields of interest. And you can import and export feeds you want to share with your colleagues. So it’s great for getting new team members up-to-date fast!
But be careful! Don’t go crazy adding all the websites you think you’ll follow; you may include too many even to skim through.
Compatibility: iOS, Android, Web
And now to you. What are your favorite productivity apps or tools you use? Share them with us in the comments section. Preferably now, rather than later 😉