7 Organisational Tools For Improving Workplace Productivity
Updated 29 December 2022
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Organising tools can help individuals and teams manage their tasks and schedules better. Companies of different sizes use them to increase team collaboration and productivity. Knowing about the importance and types of organising tools can help you choose the most suitable one. In this article, we discuss the uses and benefits of using organisational tools in the workplace, list seven popular ones and discuss some key factors to consider while selecting an organising tool.
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What Are Organisational Tools?
Organisational tools are specialised software and applications that help organise your time, schedule, work and tasks to make the workday more efficient and productive. These tools can be physical objects, such as diaries and planners, or digital software, such as mobile applications. Organising tools can help you take notes, create to-do lists, communicate with team members, organise your calendar and meetings, set reminders or keep track of time.
Organising tools and applications can help individuals and teams prioritise tasks, collaborate, save time, prioritise tasks and reduce stress. Most organising tools for individual use are available free of cost or have a free version with limited features. Enterprise usage may require a subscription or licence, generally depending on the number of users. Most products offer a monthly, quarterly and yearly pricing plan.
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Benefits Of Using Organisational Productivity Tools
Here are some prominent benefits of using organising tools and applications in the workplace:
Improved efficiency: Organising tools help improve productivity and efficiency by enabling individuals and teams to manage their time effectively. Whether it is allocating responsibilities to different team members, scheduling shifts or organising meetings, these tools help everyone in the team utilise time better.
Better focus: Organising tools make it easier to access documents, files, communication, alerts and updates in a single place. This reduces the number of distractions and notifications while working and promotes better focus.
Effective prioritisation: Using organising tools can help individuals and teams prioritise urgent tasks, simplify allocation of responsibilities and prevent duplication of effort. This can be crucial for large teams and projects with members working in different time slots and shifts.
Clear communication and collaboration: Many organising tools specifically aim to improve communication and collaboration between team members. They can also function as instant-messaging apps that provide real-time updates from the team and ensure that all team members remain connected.
Effective project management and tracking: Organisation applications and tools can help team managers and members track project tasks, updates and deliveries. This can reduce the chances of errors, missing deadlines or forgetting unfinished tasks.
Remote access: As many organising tools are cloud-based, they allow employees to access their project lists, tasks and files while working remotely. These tools also help enhance collaboration between team members working remotely across different locations and time zones.
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7 Common Organisational Tools
Here are seven popular organising tools that you can use to enhance your productivity:
Trello is an easy-to-use project management solution that helps team members collaborate. You can split each task and deliverable into different steps, which get assigned to the right task owner. The team can track updates on this and monitor any changes and discuss any challenges in comments. The application also automates minor tasks, such as updating statuses. You can integrate several third-party applications with your Trello account.
Basecamp helps teams coordinate and manage project tasks and deliveries. Large projects get divided into smaller projects with well-defined actions. Users can also manage tasks, updates and notifications other than creating to-do lists, messages and check-ins. You can share files, comments and reports on each different task and project. Different team members get access to unique features depending on their role in the team, which helps manage information access effectively.
Timely is a calendar and time management application that helps streamline meetings. It helps schedule discussions, calls and meetings with employees, clients and prospects. Employees also get customised timesheets, dashboards and shift rosters. Timely also offers marketing, client management and inventory management tools.
Asana is a popular time and project management tool that helps improve coordination between team members. It helps reduce the dependence on emails by visualising project management and progress. Asana's user-friendly interface makes it easy for non-technical employees to get familiar with its features quickly and use it effectively.
Slack is a team communication and collaboration platform that enables companies to create online workplaces with different teams and employee profiles. Users can communicate through direct and group messages, upload files and share updates. Slack offers many useful integrations that can help simplify time and team management.
6. Zoho Projects
Zoho Projects is a comprehensive project management software within the Zoho suite of applications. Like other platforms, you can collaborate with team members and track task progress seamlessly with Zoho Projects. Besides an intuitive user interface, the application also has timesheets, workflow visualisation and task automation features.
7. Physical tools
Besides digital tools, there are several physical tools that you can use to manage your time and schedule. Planners, diaries and calendars can help manage everyday tasks, create to-do lists, schedule meetings and prioritise urgent work. Similarly, timers and desk organisers can help improve productivity and set reminders. The team can also use a physical board or collaborative calendar to make task lists and schedule meetings, respectively.
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Things To Consider When Choosing Organisational Tools
Here are some important considerations when choosing organisational or productivity tools:
You can choose a tool depending on the size of your team. Small teams typically use free or starter plans with limited capabilities. If you require a tool for the entire workforce, ensure that the service provider can manage the team effectively. Some products may offer unlimited features and exchange of messages only in their premium plans for enterprises.
Make sure you fully understand the function and usage of different collaboration features while comparing different tools. Determine how team members can collaborate, whether they receive real-time notifications and if they can communicate with each other directly. If required, make sure that the tool allows teams and users to share files, attachments and other forms of data.
Ease of use
Choosing a tool with a seamless and intuitive user interface is critical. Products that are complex to learn and use can discourage employees from effectively utilising their benefits. So, it is essential to have a simple design, layout, onboarding or migration for users to start using the tool quickly.
Find out whether the service provider extends support for query resolution, onboarding and upgrading. If the company provides some resources in the form of training sessions, tutorials or user manuals for employees, make sure you review them. You can also find industry reviews by peers to assess the quality of support offered by the service provider.
Confidential business information, files and communication are likely to get uploaded, stored and managed on the servers of the company providing the product. So, make sure that the service provider follows advanced cybersecurity practices to ensure data privacy and prevent leakages. Enquire about their safety and encryption protocols and how they ensure access to data based on job titles within the tool.
If possible, ask the service provider to conduct a pilot programme to establish the value of the tool. You can select one team or a group of employees for onboarding on the platform and measure metrics like productivity, engagement and turnaround time. This can help you assess the tangible impact that the tool can have on the organisation.
Integration and customisation
Considering today's digitally interconnected workplaces, it is essential to have vital third-party integrations to leverage organisational tools to their maximum potential. Make sure the platform offers integration with leading email, calendar and video conferencing service providers. If the team has specific requirements from the tool, consult with the company to understand the degree of customisation possible.
Please note that none of the companies, institutions or organisations mentioned in this article are associated with Indeed.
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