This is Post No. 11 in How to Start a Business Series.
Right business apps can make you more productive and your business more efficient.
[Before we talk about technology, let me share my favorite tools for an entrepreneur. My favorite business tools are a notebook and a pen. With these two, you can capture ideas, make plans and lists to take action. It does not matter where you are or whether you are connected to internet or not.]
Business Apps You Can Use.
Here are my favorite business apps. If you are in sync with tech, like most of us are, then use them.
Google Docs. My ideas may start in a notebook or text file but ultimately they end up in Google docs. It makes collaboration easy. It is better than having files on your hard drive. You can also use Google docs to create proposals and pitch documents.
I wrote this series of posts almost entirely on Google docs. Use it if you have a reliable internet connection. No worries if you do not have good internet access, plain old notebook or text file will work well.
Email. There are people who use email as their idea file, not a very effective use of email. Email is something you should use to receive task requests, once you receive – send an appropriate response, archive email and add the task to your list. You also use it to send your action items and requests to others. Of course, you will use it to send and receive general messages.
Dropbox. Use it to save, share and access files.
Freshbooks.com: For accounting and invoicing your clients.
iDoneThis: For accountability and making sure you are shipping stuff. This also helps in managing team performance, in a non-intrusive way.
Evernote: To capture ideas and store notes.
PlanScope: For hassle free project management, targeted at those running a consulting business, also for freelance developers and designers.
BaseCamp: For online collaboration and project management.
This list is by no means complete. There are more awesome apps that you can use, but the apps listed above are a good starting point. See the idea is to run a business with the help of good apps and not to use a lot of apps.
That said, feel free to share your favorite app in comments and also why you like it. I will be happy to add the good ones to the list.
Action for the day: Pick one of the apps listed above, take a peek inside and start using it for your business.