With the help of technology, more and more people from different kinds of career paths find great opportunities online, which leads to many professionals making the transition from being an office employee to working from home.
While it sounds a lot easier, making your day more productive at the comfort of your own home may be a little bit trickier than you think. Not only do you have to discipline yourself to work without supervision, you'll also need a reliable setup when doing your projects and when communicating with your coworkers, boss, and clients.
Like all things in the world, there are pros and cons when working from home. But the cons can always be reduced with a little help. So if you’re a full time freelancer, remote worker, or find yourself suddenly in a work from home situation (such as our current scenario in Metro Manila), here are eight apps and online tools to help you out!
One of the most popular time management apps on both phones and desktops, Evernote allows its users to create and organize their to-do lists, checklists, and notes be it in text, a captured photo, or a voice note. In short, it is your handy guide to all the work that needs to be done. You can also sync it across devices so that you can conveniently access your notes in any device. It is available for iOS, Android, Windows, and Mac. It is free when synced across two devices while there is a paid subscription if you'll use it on more than two.
Another to-do list app, Todoist can help you out in managing your projects, be it a personal one or a collaboration with your coworkers. Keep tabs on your tasks and be reminded of its deadlines through a Todoist notification. The app can also work offline, which is convenient in case you needed access to your to-do list without an internet connection. Todoist works on iOS, Android, Windows, and Mac. It is available for free with up to 5 members and comes with a subscription fee for more members and premium features.
For businesses that really need to maximize their productivity online, GSuite by Google Cloud is a must-have subscription. With GSuite, the team can work on documents, spreadsheets, and presentations online in real-time, saving everyone the hassle of having to upload their files again and again everytime changes are made. It also includes an upgraded Google Drive space; Hangouts Chat, a professional messaging app for mobile and desktop; and Hangouts Meet, a reliable video conferencing tool. As of this writing, GSuite subscrition prices per user per month are $4.20 for Basic, $10.20 for Business, and $25 for Enterprise.
Facebook Messenger is the most handy, free messaging app to help you communicate with your workmates. Online meetings are made easier with its group video chat feature that can have up to 50 participants who can be on camera or just listen to the call. The call can display up to six participants, but when there are more than six within the call, the dominant speaker will be displayed. Messenger is available for iOS, Android, and Windows.
While Facebook's Messenger is a well equipped app to help us communicate with our professional peers, the only downside with it is that it could get our personal and professional lives mixed up (plus, you don't want to hit that filter during a video call with someone important). A nice free alternative is Viber. Besides direct messaging and group chats, the app can also hold group audio and video calls with up to 5 participants. Viber is available on iOS, Android, Windows, and Mac.
For almost all businesses, social media presence plays a crucial role in bridging the brand and its users and customers. Hootsuite makes social media management easier by bringing it all together into one screen. With it, you can make scheduled posts and reply to comments across multiple online platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn without having to log-in and jump from one app to another. Hootsuite plans start from $19 a month after a 30-day free trial.
If you're occassionally sending files online then it is also ideal to have a handy cloud so you could easily send links for your files. In case you choose not to avail the GSuite packages which already include access to a larger Google Drive space, then OneDrive is your ideal alternative. The free OneDrive basic plan already gives subscribers 5GB of space. You can also avail a much larger one in a package with Microsoft Office apps priced $6.99 to $9.99 per month.
Being able to read PDF files is a given when trying to work online, but we're adding Adobe Acrobat Reader to the list for its e-signature capabilities. With this software, you can just save your e-signature one time and access it easily whenever you need to sign online documents. No need to manually add a photo of your signature on Microsoft Word or worse, to print, sign, and scan the paper everytime you need to send a signed copy.
Which app do you think is most helpful?