Demands on businesses are constantly evolving, but there's plenty of help available in the form of automation and apps. Here are some of our favourites.
It’s no secret that demands on businesses are constantly evolving. Recent months have been especially challenging, particularly for small and medium businesses.
But at the same time, there has never been more help in the form of apps, automation and cloud-based services. As work becomes even more flexible and changeable, technology has played an even bigger role.
Apps are traditionally thought of as mobile-based, but just as many are on your desktop. Whether you’re on the road, in your office or working remotely, there are several apps that will help you run your business more efficiently. Many of the recommended apps on this list are free, and all are affordable.
We understand that it can be daunting to wade through new technologies, so we’ve broken them down by categories based on the purposes they serve.
One of the best known apps on this list, Google Drive is incredibly accessible and versatile. Create a Google account (you likely already have one), use ‘Drive’ from its options (in that little 9-dot square in the right hand corner of your screen) and upload documents into it.
You can share the drive with other team members, it works as well on mobile and desktop, and - maybe best of all - it’s very open to the sources and file types you can upload, whether it’s a pdf, Microsoft document or several video formats.
Increasingly handy in a post-covid world, DropBox allows you to send large files to your colleagues. It’s free, and its size limits for each email are very generous.
A typical use of Dropbox would be sending high-resolution images to a printing company.
A terrific, simple idea, Evernote consolidates notes and makes it easier to keep track of them. This might be meeting notes, ideas, to do lists or reminders. You can also create teams to share these items with.
We know that it might be gauche to recommend our own product on our own blog, but it would also be remiss not to mention something so genuinely useful.
AutoEntry, as you probably know, takes the pain, time and grind out of data entry by allowing you to snap, upload or email invoices, bank statements or receipts to your accounts software or accountant.
Typically, an AutoEntry customer saves hours of time every month on data entry. What you do with that extra time is up to you...
A fine project management tool, Asana is a combination of shared calendar, to do list and communications too. Set your team tasks, create a calendar, and change the calendar as the month goes on (moving tasks to completed or in progress categories as appropriate). You can also have Asana email you your daily tasks every morning.
This one is for managing meetings with people outside of your company, across different schedules and even international time zones. Create a list of options (such as available times) and send a simple link to the invitee. Above all else, Calendly diminishes the need for back and forth emails we send when organizing meetings.
Calendly synchronises with your business apps and suites too, so it knows your availability.
One of the best known communication tools on the market, Slack has become the chat app of choice for businesses around the world. Its reliability and user-friendly interface have been key to its success, while its compatibility with countless other apps have consolidated Slack’s popularity.
Expensify combines your receipt information with your company payment cards, making the thorny issue of receipts and expenses easier. Expense approval can be automated, speeding up the process further. And the whole thing can be synched with your accounts software.
This communications app uses AI to make the most of your company’s communications. It’s a chat function, sales tool and customer service app in one. Using intelligent bots, Intercom makes sure visitors to your site get the best, most appropriate experience, whether they end up on a product trial, at customer service or even set a meeting with someone from your sales team.
AutoEntry helps companies and sole traders around the world with their accounting and data entry. Automated data entry reduces stress, saves acres of time and leads to a more paperless life.