By Min Kumar

5 Business Efficiency apps for small business owners

Businesses

If you run a small business it’s likely you started your journey with a clear idea of what you wanted to achieve, but quickly found yourself wearing a lot of hats to get there. These extra jobs are crucial to your business success but they do require good time management skills. Apps for Smartphones and tablets can help small business owners manage their day more efficiently in order to get back to doing what they’re great at. 
Below is a list of 5 time saving apps you might like to take for a test drive:

1. Dropbox – Data storage solution

Known to be reliable, trustworthy and secure, Dropbox has been the go to cloud storage solution for businesses on the move for some time now and it’s only getting better with each version. Cloud storage is a great way to store and organise your files and have access to them when you’re on the go. Offering 2GB of free storage and up to 100GB with a subscription, storing your business files in a secure yet accessible and shareable location has never been easier.

Dropbox works via your internet browser, via a Smartphone and even offline by seamlessly integrating changes to ensure even the smallest annotation isn’t missed. And if that annotation happens to be a typo, you can always revert to a previous copy as the online storage solution keeps a one-month history of your work and any deleted files can be restored. Pretty nifty for a classic don’t you think?

2. CamCard – Contact management system

Business cards are the glitter of the corporate world, and with every meeting, conference or event you seem to accrue more and more. Will you ever call Joe Smith with the limp handshake? Probably not, but his business card has made it into your never ending collection.

Get judicious with your card collection with an app like CamCard. This clever app scans and stores business card data in seconds to create a database of contacts with essential information that can be synced across all your devices. It’s also advertised as the world’s first augmented reality business card reader. Sounds fancy, but essentially this feature allows you to read business cards with audio, video or files attached to them. Welcome to the future.

3. Minute– Meeting efficiency app

Everyone’s been in the never ending meeting, the one that began in the morning and ended in your 70s if your aching limbs and frequent micro-sleeps are anything to go by. The team at Minute have heard your silent pleas and have created an app guaranteed to hasten even the most oblivious discussion room diva.

Launched late last year the app can be used to share notes, stream presentations and provide meeting outcomes with connectivity across all major social networking platforms. Now with all that extra time you can finally write those reports you’ve been struggling to find the time to get to.

4. SproutSocial– Social media communication hub

Social media was once the domain of selfie taking teens but there’s no doubt in recent years it has irrevocably changed how we communicate with each other as well as clients and customers. With the abundance of platforms such as: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ it’s easy to see how quickly the communications landscape is changing and adapting to the opportunities social media is creating. This makes keeping track of incoming and outgoing communications vital to business growth. But how can you keep on top of all those conversations?

SproutSocial promises to streamline all their social media platforms into a single inbox, publish across mediums, check analytics, monitor keywords, curate contact records and assign social media tasks. Users can also turn messages into support tickets to turn their social media accounts into helpdesk outlets.

5. Chrometa – Time tracking

Where does the time go? Some days it’s hard to pin point where the productive hours of your day have gone. Try out Chrometa. Once installed on your computer you be able to see which emails, websites and open applications held your attention throughout the day. These functions are all automatic and ideal for the procrastinator or social media surfer to see just where their day has gone off the rails.

This app is ideal for those wanting to see where they can save time. The data collected is also password protected and specified apps can be blocked from being recorded, so all the closeted CandyCrush players out there can breathe a sigh of relief (by the way I should add CandyCrush to my list of inefficiency apps don’t you think?).

With over 76,000 business apps in the iTunes app store and counting there’s an app for every user. Did we miss a gem? Have you tried these out before? Tell us about your favourite time management app.

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