7 Tools for Productivity
At Metrics, we’re obsessed with efficiency and take pride in our progressive adoption of technology to streamline operations.
Slack, G Suite and Trello are status quo here—they are the core platforms we utilize with proficiency on a daily basis, but they have their limitations. That’s where other apps come into play. We continually fine-tune our systems with additional apps and software to enhance and optimize our operations, planning and workflow.
Here’s a look at a few of our favourite tools that help us take care of the small tasks, so we can focus on the important work. Try implementing a few to bring a little more efficiency into your worklife. The time you’ll save in the long run is more than worth it.
Back-and-forth emails, checking your calendar for availability and managing schedules is very time consuming and unnecessary. A calendar booking software automates the process and allows clients to book meetings based on your availability.
We use YouCanBookMe—our clients book straight into our calendar and receive invitations, notifications and reminders. And of course, we’ve integrated it so we receive a notification in Slack or by email depending on the meeting type or employee’s preference.
Price: $10/month per calendar
With a team of early-birds and night-owls, there are often times we are working, but don’t want to send out emails to clients. Boomerang for Gmail lets us control when we send emails and set follow-up reminders for emails that have not received a reply.
It’s very easy to use: schedule an email to send at a later time, set follow-up reminders, and archive messages to attend to when you’re ready. Let the automation work its magic to get you ahead of schedule!
Price: free for the basic plan and up to $50/month for Premium
Our friends over at Redbrick created a comprehensive solution for managing multiple accounts at the same time. Shift is an email client that makes navigating between Mail, Calendar and Drive accounts fast, easy, and beautiful. When we read their messaging, we got on board immediately: “Shift is the number one way users, just like you, GSD.”
Price: the basic account is free, while Shift Pro is just $20/year
Spectacle may seem unnecessary, but we love it! We’re constantly comparing files side-by-side on our screens. With your hands on a keyboard, it can be annoying to fiddle with a mouse or trackpad to click on a window’s corner to drag and resize documents. Spectacle allows you to control windows with simple and customized keyboard shortcuts. For example, a simple option/alt + command + left arrow will move a window to the left half or your screen. Hit that again and it will fill two-thirds of your screen. Easy!
Price: a donation to Spectacle is suggested, but not required
Trello keeps us on-task and allows us to plan our our work in an organized and effective manner. Adding Butler for Trello into the mix has allowed us to harness the power of a robot to perform tasks that can be time consuming. Write simple commands on a card in Trello and the Butler will automatically perform an action on the card for you. Butler can schedule tasks, move/archive cards, add or remove labels and more; he’s the behind-the-scenes member of your team who totally rocks small tasks!
Price: free for basic and up to $50/month
You can implement all the apps in the world, but if they’re not working together in the same system, they can easily start to create more work. This is where Zapier comes into play. Use it to connect your apps and move information between them to automate your workflow. Standard examples of this at Metrics are the Zap we created to notify us in Slack when a client has uploaded a document or the Zap that creates new Trello cards each time we star a message in Slack. With hundreds of integrations and apps involved, the possibilities to streamline your daily operations are endless!
Price: the basic level is free, and pricing goes up to $125/month for teams
We’ll let the robot do the talking on this one…
Try Parse Emails by Zapier out here.