There is no secret that pulling together a collaborative and productive team could be a challenging mission. In fact, according to the stats, it’s becoming harder and harder to increase overall team performance. And as you can guess, low productivity negatively impacts companies in terms of revenue, employee engagement, work quality, and more.
But the good news is that businesses can influence and revamp their productivity in many ways. For instance, they can do it with the help of technology. In this article, we will dive into how application software, artificial intelligence, and plugins meet the productivity needs of businesses all around the world.
1. Get employees involved with employee engagement software
Employee engagement software gives you an outlet to recognize employees that go above and beyond. But it’s not just limited to recognition from management. Coworkers can also use the software to thank their colleagues for helping them out with a project or facilitating their own jobs. This promotes a stronger culture of teamwork and motivates employees to give their best. Some employee engagement software even lets employees redeem their rewards for gift cards or other perks for even more incentives.
Here are some of the best employee engagement platforms.
15Five is a continuous performance management solution that helps employees grow and develop, in just 15 minutes each week. Through a lightweight weekly check-in, 15Five delivers everything a manager needs to impact employee performance, including continuous feedback, objectives (OKR) tracking, recognition, 1-on-1s, and reviews. The resulting metrics and qualitative responses then become the basis for managers to learn just how much support and guidance to provide.
Motivosity Connect is designed to help employees have a better understanding of the people around them and to share and appreciate all the good things people are doing within your company. Build social connection throughout your organization by allowing employees to share highlights and successes. Share company announcements and newsletters to keep everyone up to date. When creating their profile, employees can take a personality test and see who within the company they are similar to.
Kudos is an employee recognition system and corporate social network that empowers managers and employees to give recognition. As a Software-as-a-Service solution, Kudos is scalable and adaptable and is appropriate for all company sizes. It is a peer-to-peer recognition system designed to engage teams with enhanced communication, collaboration, appreciation, and timely recognition. Kudos can also be used to boost organizational communications and gain an insight into their people and culture.
Build your best team with Trakstar’s fully-integrated platform for performance management, employee engagement, recruiting, and learning management. Create a culture of consistent feedback with a performance management tool that is flexible to fit your needs with a great user experience. Promote training and development with learning management that is easy to manage, adapts for microlearning styles, and includes comprehensive reporting to ensure compliance.
Recognize and engage employees to promote culture, peer appreciation, and teamwork with ClearCompany. our employee recognition tool, empowers co-workers to publicly recognize peers who have done a great job or helped them out. Messages of appreciation can be sent to individuals or teams and immediately appear on the company news feed. Understand employee sentiments and improve workplace culture with engagement and pulse surveys. Choose from expert-designed questions or customize your own.
Create a culture people want to be part of with Fond's recognition and rewards platform. Create a culture of recognition at your company by publicly acknowledging others for their milestones and accomplishments. Easily build custom service award catalogs for your employees, track work anniversaries, offer plaques and trophies, and more. Get the data you need and track your program performance, usage, redemption history, popular perks and rewards, and more.
Motivate and drive your sales team with Spinify's gamification software. Work together on team based goals and measure progress in real time, giving real visibility of the task. Drive engagement with fun competitions that boost performance. Use personalized video to celebration achievements. Connect offices located all over the global. Celebrate your success as one. Change the company culture by creating personal announcements, countdown timers, and birthday messages.
Bring your frontline, office, and remote teams together on one platform. MangoApps helps companies modernize their employee-facing applications. It brings intranet, communications, training & work management together in one platform to provide the most adaptable, intuitive, and unified experience in the market today. Start with a single application or the complete toolbox. MangoApps is a new way of keeping everyone on the same page and working towards the same goals.
Assembly is an employee recognition and engagement platform aiming to build positive team cultures. The software allows teams to create a thriving remote work culture by giving employees tools they can use to recognize their peers. Assembly enables teams to provide visibility to peer recognition, anniversaries, birthdays, and badges. It allows co-workers to easily recognize each other with meaningful messages and rewards. Companies can manage culture spend with a positive and justifiable ROI.
PerformYard is a performance management company that makes performance reviews, feedback, and goals easy to manage. PerformYard allows HR to build custom appraisal processes using a long list of flexible features, it helps managers complete reviews quickly without extra admin work, and it gives employees a record of their achievements so everyone knows where they stand. PerformYard’s cloud-based solution automates the performance appraisal process from start to finish.
2. Bring teammates near and far closer together with communication software
We all know that effective communication is crucial for team productivity. At the same time, some companies are often on the fence about investing their time and efforts into software that improves team communication. That’s resulted in whopping losses for business owners — companies with 100 employees throw to the wind an average of $420,000 per year because of miscommunication.
Luckily, the market offers many advanced technological solutions for businesses of all sizes: team messengers, video conferencing apps, and everything in between that can dramatically boost internal communication and — as a result — team productivity. Here are a few.
When choosing a messenger for your team, give Chanty a try. Chanty is an easy-to-use team chat focused on ramping up business processes for small and medium teams through artificial intelligence. It helps your teammates become more productive by featuring:
- real-time messaging with an unlimited searchable history
- AI that identifies and gather important information and key takeaways from chats
- plenty of storage space
- robust file sharing
- audio and video calls
- uniting notifications from multiple software services in a single place.
Slack offers a huge number of handy features for team collaboration including group channels and direct messages, file sharing, integrating third-party platforms (like Salesforce, Dropbox, Stripe, etc.), video/audio calls, and other workflow improvers.
If you’re looking for an affordable team chat, Slack can be used for as long as you like at no charge. Keep in mind that that free comes with some limitations in terms of message history, integrations, file storage, and so on.
Flock is a team messenger linking up project collaboration and team communication. Here you can:
- Schedule lightweight tasks while chatting with team members
- Invite business partners, freelancers, and vendors to chat
- Create multiple groups (each focused around a current project or task)
- Hold video meetings with up to eight teammates
- Use To-Do feature for task management and Rich Note Sharing feature to easily share drafts/documents.
A bonus is that Flock features unlimited integrations in its free package.
Having a reliable video conferencing tool will save you time and headaches. Zoom is a Video conferencing service with screen sharing and recording features available on desktop and mobile. Zoom makes remote/in-office team communication and collaboration easier by simply sending a link that takes everyone from all around the world to a meeting. You can conference with individuals without a Zoom account.
Similar to Zoom, appear.in lets you create online meeting rooms via video calls with up to eight people for free. Appear.in is so simple to setup and use. The top features of include:
- Setting a custom background image for the room
- Blocking the room for private talks
- Texting in a chat during meetings
- Sharing your screen
Using Tribe, you can start a group video call from your browser without any account. Just create and send your own invite link to the teammates. Bonus: it’s free.
Never take call notes again and boost the productivity of your phone meetings with Tetra. Tetra uses AI to take notes during your phone calls, so you can focus on the conversation and remember everything later. Using this tool you will be able to:
- Turn phone conversations into text documents immediately after your call is over
- Never forget key details received during phone meetings, and quickly find necessary information
- Make sure everyone’s on the same page sharing your notes with the teammates if needed
3. Stay organized across workflows with cloud-based project or task management software
Have you ever had a project delayed while you desperately searched for a needed document? Had a laptop crashed with all the important files? Needed some assets sent but had a teammate stuck working offline?
Having all your projects, assets, and milestones in sync and easily accessible can significantly improve overall team performance and be a bold competitive advantage. Therefore, there is no surprise that today companies run 79 percent of their workloads in the cloud.
So, no matter what size or industry your business is related to, the project management tools listed below will greatly enhance your team productivity and collaboration.
4. Make every second count using time tracking tools
If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it. To increase your performance and productivity, you must first understand your work clock. How much time do you waste during the workday and on what distractions? What are naturally your most productive hours? How substantial is your contribution to the company’s progress? All these questions can be precisely answered with the help of time tracking tools. Using them, you will able to make the most of your time and, as a consequence, become more efficient.
Time tracking can solve issues of low productivity and procrastination. Toggl is an easy-to-use tool that allows you to enter, start, and stop tracking tasks quickly. Every task can be tagged with a specific word that will help you find needed information later. Some of its features are listed below:
- Time tracking built in your web browser
- Managing workflow of the whole team
- Reporting on your budget spending
- Getting in-depth insights on your company profitability
Popular alternatives to Toggl are Harvest, RescueTime, and TimeCamp.
TimeBoy is an user-friendly and feature-rich tracking app which helps you manage as many workers and projects as you need. With TimeBoy you will be able to:
- Get a complete overview of team performance
- Generate and export productivity reports
- Learn how the work hours are actually spent
- Integrate with your project management software
5. Declutter your digital workspaces (and mind)
Work environment directly impacts team and personal productivity. Chaos can significantly decrease the ability to focus on a job. Alternatively, a laptop screen, web browser, and work tool stack that are streamlined can help you feel organized and calm. If you can’t recall the last time when you felt that way, it’s time to put your digital environment in order with the following tools.
Searching for various documents, links, or whatever else through all your work apps may be a major pain for you and for the entire company. Toby s a smart manager that helps your team organize, share, and collaborate with browser tabs.
With Toby, everything inside a shared tab collection is instantly available to every team member. There’s no need to search through Google Drive, Dropbox, JIRA, Confluence, Slack, and all of your other apps. By organizing your browser tabs with the help of Toby, you can access important resources in one click instead of ten.
Magnet is a handy window manager for MAC that keeps your workspace organized.
Having multiple windows aligned neatly side by side minimizes app switching and greatly enhances multitasking, comparing, and copying. In other words, Magnet declutters your screen by arranging windows into organized tiles.
Station is a nicely organized workstation for all work tools. It’s designed to let you seamlessly switch between your apps in one click and find what you need in a blink of an eye. The unified search finds any information or page you have saved across all your apps. The notification center allows you gain complete control over all your notifications across all your tools.
6. Inject some fun stuff
Integrating fun into the workplace increases productivity and reduces stress. Moreover, companies with ‘fun policies’ indicate greater job satisfaction and increased employee loyalty. So don’t be afraid to inject some fun into your team workflow. That will only ramp up the overall productivity, not kill it.
Can 10 minutes of listening to music make your team more productive? Actually, according to auditory neuroscientists, it can. Brain.fm is the only music composer that boosts attention, reduces mind-wandering, and empowers human minds to achieve more. Why not test it out? All you need is a pair of earphones.
Japanese researchers found that watching cute cat video boosts your productivity and improve attention. It’s not a joke, that’s a real study. Test it yourself with the help of Cat Room where you can create your own personal room with cute cats. Just be sure to use your time tracking software too, so you don’t spend too much time with your digital furballs.
These collaboration tools are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to software that boosts team productivity. The great thing about them is that an investment in these tools doesn’t necessarily require a huge upfront cost. Plenty of the above-mentioned collaboration systems offer a free plan, typically with some limitations. Nevertheless, these free versions let you test out whether the tool meets your team’s needs so you can get buy-in before you buy.
Julia Samoilenko is a marketing manager at Chanty — a simple AI-powered business messenger and a single notification center. With five years of experience in digital marketing, Julia is responsible for Chanty’s online social media presence and public relations. Connect with Julia on LinkedIn.