Productivity applications for SMBs

Productivity applications for SMBs

Productivity in the workplace isn’t just about ticking off tasks on a list or writing timetables. It’s about motivating your team by giving them the tools they need to get the job done as quickly and easily and to as high a standard as possible. SMB owners face many challenges when it comes to making a business run smoothly, and working hard doesn’t necessarily equate to being productive. Fortunately, there are many tools and services available that will empower you and the rest of your team to do more in less time.

Office 365
For many years, Microsoft Office has been the industry standard in productivity suites. Since 2011, it has been available as part of the subscription-based Office 365 brand, which also includes various time-saving tools for both Windows and Macintosh users. Business users can choose from a variety of plans tailored to the size of their company. Higher business-orientated packages support higher-to-unlimited numbers of users, 1 TB of online storage per user, and a range of industry-leading server applications and services.

Virtualization software
It’s not just your employees’ productivity that’s important. You’ll also want to make the best use of your available hardware resources. Virtualization allows you to do more with a single computer (typically a server system) by allocating its resources in such a way that allows one machine to take on multiple roles simultaneously. Virtualization software isn’t just for use in major data centers – it can also help boost small-business productivity and reduce operational costs. VMWare is currently the industry leader in virtualization, although Microsoft Hyper-V is also popular.

Spam filtering
Spam has become a multi-billion-dollar industry, costing companies all over the world thousands every year in lost productivity and security breaches. Eliminating spam, therefore, has become a major goal for many companies, especially those that receive hundreds or even thousands of spam messages per day. While most email service providers block spam by default, some things still get through, and they tend to be the most dangerous, too. A decent spam-filtering service, particularly one that’s outsourced over the cloud, can help you reclaim countless hours of lost productivity.

Helpdesk services
Providing excellent helpdesk support both internally and to your customers is essential for your reputation and the smooth-running of your business. Just as your customers need someone they can rely on to help them solve their issues, your employees also need to know whom to call when something goes wrong. Providing a solid helpdesk support system will help streamline problem management by providing a more efficient system. Alternatively, you may even consider having an outsourced helpdesk to free up your team to focus on core business objectives.

G Suite
G Suite, formerly known as Google Apps for Work, has become one of the world’s largest cloud computing brands. Although it’s a direct competitor of Microsoft Office 365, there are some important differences to consider. Firstly, G Suite is entirely web-based, and there is virtually no offline component. Being a much more online-oriented platform, G Suite tends to be the better choice for companies comfortable with moving all or most of their IT processes to the cloud. Aside from Google Docs, G Suite also provides online storage, instant messaging and webpage creation tools.

Email marketing
Despite the rise of social media, email marketing remains the most cost-effective of all marketing communications. Email open rates are also on the rise; but for your campaign to have a good chance of succeeding, you’ll need to choose the right service to get your message out to the masses. MailChimp is one of the world’s most popular email marketing platforms, and it boosts productivity by automating the sending process and tracking important metrics. Email marketing software can also help you design better emails in less time.

Social media management
Social media is another extremely important marketing channel -- but one that can quickly become a major time sink. As with email marketing, making use of the right tools for your social media campaign can free up time by automating repetitive tasks and helping you stick to a posting schedule. Again, a social media marketing service should also provide a robust analytics platform to help you track important metrics such as impressions, engagement levels, and more. Among the most popular of such platforms is Hootsuite, which supports all the popular networks.

Undoubtedly one of the best ways to boost productivity in the workplace is to outsource some of your IT processes, allowing your in-house team to focus on core business objectives instead. Call us today to find out how we can help.