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A piece of corrugated card with the text Process Automation on it, alongside a black market pen and some wooden discs with letters printed on them. This is overlaid with text which says : Automate tasks using Zapier : 5 quick wins! Includes a small Solvaa logo in the corner.

As a business owner, life can get overwhelming. Between working on client assignments, running your own company, and maintaining some kind of family or social life, it’s almost impossible to do it all without a solid foundation and proper organisation.

Productivity tools are the first step towards getting organised. They exist in many forms and sizes – from online applications to smartphone apps.

In this article, we discuss four productivity applications that can result in big changes for your business and your own productivity. They are all very different, and not mutually exclusive; you can very well use one of these tools for your to-do list, another to keep client work organised, and a third to keep track of ideas and projects. Or you can use one productivity app for everything!

Here are four unbeatable productivity apps that will change the way you do business – in a good way.

 

Asana: ‘The easiest way for teams to track work – and get results.’

 

Asana is a great task management tool for teams, although many individuals use it as a productivity app. Its main power comes from being highly customisable and having over a hundred different integrations with other tools to choose from. Zapier extends this connectivity further by using its pre-built integrations to link Asana with over 2,000 applications including Gmail, Calendly and Slack to streamline your workflows and reduce manual tasks.

 

Main features:

  • Project tracking and automation.
  • Customisable dashboard and views.
  • Easy tracking of tasks within projects or per team member.

 

Pricing: The free version is guaranteed to get you hooked: It offers unlimited tasks, projects and conversations. For task dependencies, start dates or to add more than 15 members to your team, you’ll need one of the paid versions. Asana Premium starts at £9.99 per month (billed annually), for a team of up to five members and the Business plan is from £20.99 (billed annually) per month.

 

Airtable: ‘Looks like a spreadsheet, acts like a database.’

 

Airtable is the newest arrival on the block and it looks promising – although some might say it’s more of an online database than just a productivity app. It is very versatile and comes with a number of different applications and pre-existing templates: It has everything your average spreadsheet program has, plus most of the features of a productivity app.

To improve productivity further you can unlock the power of Zapier with Airtable to integrate with applications such as MailChimp, Microsoft Outlook and Google Sheets, as well as many others.  The full list of Zapier / Airtable integrations is here.

 

Key features:

  • Looks like a spreadsheet at first sight.
  • Extremely customisable view – spreadsheet, calendar, form, and others.
  • Lots of templates for specific projects: Content calendar, event planning, project tracker, marketing campaign, and dozens of others. Or you can start from scratch!

 

Pricing: The free version of Airtable has everything mentioned above, but the extra options and possibilities in the paid version would make any productivity aficionado drool. Airtable paid versions start with the Plus package at just $10 (about £7.50) per user per month.

 

Trello: ‘Lets you work collaboratively and get more done.’

 

Trello is a very visual productivity tool and can be compared to a whiteboard with sticky notes. You can create as many boards as you’d like and rearrange the sticky notes (cards) just as easily. Trello allows you to effortlessly track processes and follow the progression of a project visually.

 

Key features:

  • Unlimited boards with drag-and-drop card system.
  • Each card contains all information about a project: Comments, labels, due date, checklists, attachments…
  • Allows you share a specific card on a board with a team member without having to share the whole board.

Zapier can also be used to integrate Trello with applications such as Microsoft Outlook, Excel and Dropbox.  This means that you can create cards automatically from emails, or add data to Excel from Trello.  The possibilities are endless and will further improve workflows using automations.

 

Pricing: Trello’s free option has unlimited boards, members, cards and more, but only one “power-up” (integration) per board, and limited attachments. Trello Business Class starts at $9.99 (about £7.60) per user, per month (paid annually) and the Enterprise option costs $17.50 (£13.30) or less per month (paid annually), depending on the number of users.  For example, the cheapest rate is for 5,000 users and is priced at $7.38 per user per month.

 

MeisterTask: ‘The most intuitive project and task management tool on the web.’

 

Meistertask is technically the smallest of the productivity tools in this article, but it has earned its place on the list. The free version offers unlimited projects and team members, integrations with many different other apps, and easily links documents from Dropbox or Google Drive. The dashboard (which works with so-called “cards”) is very intuitive and easy to customise. 

Meistertask is yet another application that can be used with Zapier to connect to thousands of other apps.  The full list of integrations is here, but include the full suite of Google and Microsoft software tools.

 

Key features:

  • Task relationships: You can mark tasks as related to each other, duplicated or blocked by other tasks.
  • “Section Actions” allow you to automate recurring steps in your workflow.
  • Flexible project boards adapt to your existing workflows.

 

Pricing: The free version offers unlimited projects and team members but limited file attachments and integrations. The pro plan starts at £8.25 per user per month and offers statistics and workflow automation on top of priority support, unlimited integrations, and file attachments up to 250MB.

 

Features comparison

Meistertask Asana Airtable Trello
Free option? Yes Yes Yes Yes
Paid version (per month, paid annually) From £9.99 From $10 From $9.99
Team members Yes Yes Yes Yes
Workflow automation Pro version Yes No No
Attachments Yes Yes Yes Yes
Integration with Zapier Yes Yes Yes Yes
Task dependencies Yes Premium Link between tables No
Search option Yes Yes Yes Yes
Subtasks Unlimited Yes No Checklist inside cards
Tags or labels Yes Yes No No
Integrated chat Yes Yes Yes Yes
Desktop app Yes No Yes Yes
Mobile app Yes Yes Yes Yes
Forward e-mail to create task Yes Yes No Yes
Gantt chart view Business plan only Premium plan only Pro version only Only via an add-on

 

There are many other productivity tools around. We’ll refrain from claiming that some are better than others – it really all depends on personal preference, and of course the needs of your business. 

No matter what those are though, you can rest assured – there is a productivity app which will suit you perfectly and we are confident that productivity tools will change the way you do business.

Read more about how our certified experts use Zapier workflow automations to simplify processes and increase efficiency.

Solvaa is a process and automation consultancy specialising in improving sales, operations and financial administration workflows. We help you to simplify and streamline existing processes, integrate your business tools to make data transfer more efficient and automate manual tasks to increase productivity. We are Zapier Certified Experts, Pipedrive Certified Experts and Xero Certified Advisors. 

Contact us today to discuss how Solvaa can help you simplify, improve and automate all aspects of your business with Zapier to save you time, reduce costs and keep you agile as you grow.

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