Employees are the most valuable asset of any business. With their hard work, they maintain everyday operations. If your business were a car, your workers would be the wheels that keep it rolling forward.
To keep that car moving, you want to ensure your team is satisfied and has the tools they need to succeed. Happy workers equal a happy boss, and a happy boss equals a happy company, right? Sometimes, it might seem like that's easier said than done.
Productivity tools are one way to help your team thrive on the job. These technologies make workers' jobs easier by cutting down on repetitive grunt work, simplifying collaboration and communications, streamlining everyday processes, and generally improving time management.
So, what tools are worth investing in? There are a lot of options available to boost employee productivity. Don't worry — we've got you covered with this guide. Read on for a roundup of useful tools you may want to implement in your company.
What is employee productivity?
You may see employee productivity referred to as workforce productivity. In a broad sense, this term refers to how efficient workers are or how long it takes them to complete tasks. Getting a sense of employee productivity allows individuals and businesses to plan work in a logical way.
Let’s say a content writer is responsible for writing daily blog posts. Getting a sense of how long it takes them to write a single blog post, including research time, can help determine what a reasonable daily workload is for that writer.
Why is employee productivity important?
Understanding how to measure employee productivity is the first step to improving it — and helping workers get simple tasks done faster to focus on the aspects of their job that bring them purpose and meaning.
Someone hired to develop creative strategies likely does not want to spend 50% of their time filling out client briefs, searching for hard-to-find documents, or updating data-entry forms. The good news is that all of these tasks can easily be automated with the appropriate tools. Asking a creative strategist to spend most of their time doing mundane administrative tasks will likely result in burnout and a high employee turnover rate.
Why the need for speed? Productive employees complete tasks at a more efficient rate, saving valuable employee energy and work hours in the day. Workers can then funnel energy toward more complex and meaningful duties.
Better workplace productivity can also improve overall business output and outcomes. How? Take a customer service team. One component of great customer service is responding to customer inquiries quickly. With the right tools, customer service teams can measure how long it takes to respond to client emails or resolve phone calls. Then, they can implement additional productivity tools to improve their response time.
For example, a customer relationship management tool can quickly gather basic information about a customer and their needs — so a customer service representative doesn't have to waste time on this tedious and basic administrative task. Instead, the employee can focus their energy on solving the problem at hand. This system can save both customer and employee time and frustration.
- Improved worker satisfaction, which is important for talent retention
- Greater customer satisfaction, which is important for a business's reputation and for building a loyal customer base
- Helps workers avoid wasted effort, which is important for maintaining work-life balance and minimizing the risk of burnout
Your team is the basis for your business' success, and you want to preserve their well-being. Let’s review some of the best tools to help.
12 employee productivity tools to maximize time
Businesses interested in improving employee productivity have many technologies available to help. Here are some tools worth exploring.
These days, we're always using links and apps on the job. LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Stripe, invoices, agreements, outlines, shared projects — your workers have to navigate hundreds of URLs every day. Remembering all those individual URLs? Not easy! Enter OSlash.
With this tool, you can strip down complicated and lengthy URLs and transform them into easy-to-remember shareable links in less than a second. Here are some other perks your teams will enjoy:
- Store all your links in one place with folder-like collections and tags for easy identification
- Use the search function to scan all your apps at once, finding resources quickly
- Share reference links seamlessly by typing out "o/shortcut," making teamwork easier
- Leverage branded link sharing, giving your business personalized links that improve visibility and recognition
- Enjoy easy access from anywhere in the world, perfect for remote work environments
Zapier is an automation tool that can automate all kinds of work processes. It integrates with more than 4,000 apps to create trigger-and-response workflows. For example, you can set up the tool to send out a custom tweet (the response) after publishing a blog (the trigger).
You can also use the automation tool to automatically send emails, set calendar notifications, and publish Slack notifications, to name just a few more examples. Zapier is a multipurpose automation tool that can serve many needs. Here are some of the benefits of that automation:
- Save individuals and teams time by automating simple tasks, like social media posts or email reminders
- Allow workers to focus on more complex duties by freeing up their time and attention from unimportant admin jobs (by automating them instead)
- Create multi-stop workflows to further boost efficiency and complete processes faster with minimal human intervention
- Reduce the risk of human error by using pre-programmed, machine-run processes
Asana is a project management and collaboration tool that makes tracking projects and project-specific deliverables easy. You can create workspaces, upload projects, assign deliverables within those projects to individuals, and set deadlines.
People can also communicate with one another in project workspaces. It's helpful for workers to keep track of their duties and gives managers easy oversight of projects and the various people involved in them (no micromanaging needed). Here are some of the advantages:
- Create templates that can be reused for repetitive tasks, cutting down on the time needed to complete them
- Specify dependencies, so you can designate if one task needs to be completed before another can be started
- View tasks in a chronological timeline or calendar view, providing an easy overview
- Integrate with diverse software (like Google Drive and Outlook) so you can add attachments to projects
Slack is a chat tool that makes it easier for workers to communicate and collaborate on projects. Since it also allows for file sharing, it can replace email in the workplace. This cuts down on those tedious back-and-forth email chains we all hate — you know, the ones that drag on and on.
Slack can also improve organization, allowing you to set up different workspaces. For example, different teams or projects may require different workspaces to simplify communication and avoid confusion. Here are some other reasons companies love Slack:
- Two-factor authentication improves security, keeping workplace messaging safe
- The intuitive user interface allows for group workspaces and communication, individual direct messages, and private channels
- Users can enjoy integration with more than 2,400 apps, like SalesForce, Twitter, Dropbox, Microsoft Outlook, Zoom, HubSpot, and more
Written content is a big part of business life. Depending on your job, you might have to write emails, client briefs, blog posts, social media posts, reports, and more. You want to make sure that your words are polished and clear. That's where Grammarly Business comes into play.
This tool helps team members create high-quality writing by correcting spelling, punctuation, and grammar errors. It also makes suggestions for more polite, concise, inclusive, and engaging texts, further enhancing the quality of work. Other benefits include:
- Set up customizable style guides to reflect your company's personal in-house style (such as whether you use an Oxford comma)
- Use the brand tone tool to ensure the content is polished and reflects your unique brand voice
- Grammarly Business is further compliant with the GDPR, HIPAA, and CCPA guidelines, ensuring security with any sensitive business content
15Five is a human resource software that improves employee engagement. The tool can be used to set achievable short-term and long-term goals for workers, track results via concrete benchmarks, gather employee feedback, and identify roadblocks to individual success.
The aim is to improve employee performance with a continual feedback loop and concrete statistics. For example, sales teams might rely on productivity metrics like how many deals they close in a given timeframe. Here are some of 15Five's key features:
- Turn numerical data into easy-to-understand visuals like graphs and infographics
- Track trends over time, both for individuals and among teams
- Check in and update goals in real time (also useful for remote workers)
Evernote is an app that's primarily designed for note-taking. It can also help you manage and organize more complex information. For example, meeting notes can be combined digitally with relevant attachments.
These notes and files are stored in virtual "notebooks," which users can search and edit. They can also add tags to identify notes easily. Here are some ways Evernote can boost overall productivity:
- Organize notes quickly in a digital format, which can also be shared with others
- Add due dates and reminders to notes, synching them with calendar tools, to ensure nothing falls through the cracks
- Sync notes across multiple devices, harnessing the search function to find documents fast
Movavi Screen Recorder is a powerful desktop recording software that enhances employee productivity in many ways. It enables users to record all desktop activities, along with several modes, namely screen recording, webcam recording, and audio grabbing, which streamlines communication and collaboration issues swiftly.
With Movavi Screen Recorder, users can schedule recordings in advance by setting the start time and duration, freeing them from having to be present during the recording. This feature lets users focus on other tasks while the software automatically captures the video.
Here are some additional notables that make it a great tool for maximising productivity:
- Choose recording modes to efficiently capture needed information
- Highlight cursor and mouse clicks for clear software demos or tutorial videos
- Capture audio from multiple sources for comprehensive recordings and communication
- Export files in multiple formats for easy sharing across platforms and collaboration
When workers have various appointments and deadlines to juggle, staying on top of it all can be tough. Sunsama is the answer. This calendar tool helps people plan their days by setting tasks, completing to-do lists, and more.
Basically, this tool is an old-school daily planner gone digital. It's especially useful for busy professionals with a lot of responsibilities. Here's how it can ensure a more organized workday and better worker productivity:
- Use Kanban-style digital whiteboards to break down large projects into daily to-do items
- Prioritize tasks according to their importance, the amount of work they require, or deadlines
- Integrate with tools like Jira, Trello, and Asana to fill in tasks
- Share calendars to see what teammates are working on
Notion makes it easy for multiple people to collaborate on a single document. It doubles as a note-taking and document editing software and a project management tool. You can create workspaces and populate them with documents.
Anyone with access to that workspace can work on those documents, leaving notes and comments to boost engagement and collaboration. Here are some of the perks of working with Notion:
- Reduce the amount of time needed to share documents by eliminating emails
- Ensure good work that isn't "done twice," as everyone will always have access to the most up-to-date document via the cloud
- Set up workflows to better manage documents, designate who is working on what, and create deadlines
Loom is a video messaging tool that makes sharing videos with other people easy. You can record your microphone, camera, and desktop all at once. This makes it great for presentations and tutorials.
For example, let’s say you need to train a team on a new software. You can show them exactly how to use it by recording a video of yourself/your desktop using the tool while simultaneously talking through the process. Here are some of the highlights of Loom:
- Create shareable videos that can be sent via an easy-access link
- Use time-stamped comments, emoji reactions, and other interactive features to maintain engagement
- Available for both desktop and mobile app
Fyle is an expense management software that lets you take complete control of company-wide business expenses. Employees can submit and track their expenses from applications they use every day like Gmail, Outlook, Slack, etc. Fyle also enforces automated compliance by enforcing pre-submission checks on expense reports. This means your finance teams don’t have to verify every submitted report against company policy manually.
Recently, Fyle launched a real-time spend management solution for the owners of Mastercard and Visa credit cards across the U.S. This means you get access to real-time data feeds without being dependent on your bank. Accountants can collect receipts in real-time and via text and reconcile card transactions without having to wait till the end of the month. Here are some additional benefits of using Fyle:
- Real-time expense management on cards you already have
- Seamless expense tracking for employees
- Automated compliance for policy-compliant report submission
- Self-serve integrations with prominent accounting softwares
Have all your resources at your fingertips with OSlash
Trying to remember complex hyperlinks or find them in your bookmarks or files can be a huge waste of time — and super frustrating! OSlash is here to help.
We let you easily transform long URLs into easy-to-understand and memorable shortcuts. Workers can get to the page they want faster and avoid the hassle of scouring for links — instead of copy-pasting, simply rely on autocomplete to access link shortcuts. For example, searching for that hidden invoice document can be as simple as typing “o/invoice” into your browser.
Teams can use the search function to scan apps quickly and get the links they need. It's an A-to-Z solution for link creation, management, and storage.
Give your team the power to quickly and easily access the resources they need with streamlined link management. OSlash is the productivity tool you don't know you need until you try it. Give it a try now.