6 Ways Tech Can Improve Your Productivity at Work
If you've ever felt distracted at work, you're not alone. A CareerBuilder study found that 75% of employees lose at least two hours per day in productivity due to distractions, most of which come from the internet. Right behind cellphones, the internet is one of the biggest productivity killers out there.
Though some technology, like Snapchat and texting, can be a distraction, other tech tools can be an advantage by helping you and your team to accomplish more, communicate efficiently, analyze performance, and achieve greater success. In fact, millennials, which make up one-third of the US workforce, often expect a company to use technology to inspire them to work smarter.
Harnessing the right tools for your team can not only motivate millennial employees, but also maximize your business productivity and help you overcome the challenges of executing and managing daily tasks, projects, and strategies. Here are six tech tools that can play a significant role in your workplace efficiency, benefiting employers and employees alike.
1. Get More Done in Less Time
Dependable, fast internet is the most important feature of a productive workday. "You can accomplish a lot more if you aren't waiting for pages to load, files to download, or your internet to reconnect. You may not be able to prevent distractions around the office, but you can eliminate the frustrating interruptions of a slow or lost connection by investing in a reliable business internet service," says Frontier Business Tech Specialist Garit Booth.
2. Track Progress Accurately
Whether you bill clients by the hour or you want to monitor the time it takes your team members to accomplish projects, a time tracker like Toggl can help. Measuring the time tasks require can inspire you to be more productive and collaborate efficiently with your team. Through a visual dashboard, Toggl helps you track projects in real time, receive an instant overview of your billable time and team progress, set completion goals, and more. Best of all—especially for tech enthusiasts—Toggl integrates with Asana, Trello, and other popular productivity tools.
3. Manage Your Time More Efficiently
The Pomodoro Technique is a time-management process designed to decrease burnout and increase productivity by breaking work down into twenty-five-minute sessions (called Pomodoros) followed by five-minute breaks. Choose one task, dedicate twenty-five minutes of uninterrupted focus to it, and then reward your brain with a five-minute break and repeat. After completing four Pomodoros, take a longer, fifteen- or twenty-minute break. You can use TomatoTimer to track your Pomodoros.
4. Never Forget a Task
When you are managing multiple projects or collaborating with a team, it can be overwhelming to keep things from falling through the cracks. The best way to complete tasks on time and keep track of your lists is to use an enhanced, digital to-do list, like Wunderlist. With Wunderlist, you can organize all your tasks within one app that can be accessed seamlessly from your phone, computer, or tablet. You can check off tasks as you complete them, set deadlines, share lists with your coworkers, and work together to complete projects. You'll never have to worry about missing a deadline or failing to follow through on a project again.
5. Eliminate Procrastination
Even if you're checking for work purposes, it's almost impossible to not get distracted by your favorite news sites and blogs for too long. Instead of losing hours in the abyss that is your saved bookmarks, try Pocket. Acting as a digital folder, Pocket lets you save links and articles with one click so you can access them later on any device—even without an internet connection. To avoid cluttering up Pocket, consider dedicating an hour once a month to review your saved items.
6. Stay Focused on the Goal
When you're working on a challenging project or struggling to focus, it's hard to avoid the lure of social media or email. You may not be able to unplug from the internet completely, but you can prevent distractions with a website blocker, like SelfControl. This open-sourced app lets you block access to mail servers and designated websites for a set period of time. Once you start the timer, you can't stop it—even if you restart your computer.
There's nothing better than allowing technology to simplify and improve your life. Share these tech tips and tools with your team members and take them for a test drive in the office—you'll be glad you did.