There was a time when software tools had only limited applications in certain segments of business, but that is now in the past, as we are living in a time where software tools have become important in all aspects of business, and some of them are even universal in their utility.
While the precise functionality will differ widely and in accordance with the industry, all software tools for business are designed to serve either one or multiple broad functionalities, such as simplifying and streamlining tasks, boosting productivity, ensuring security and maximizing resources. Today, we are going to take a brief look at five of the top software to types for businesses that are ideal, if not essential, for boosting productivity in 2020.
Visual Collaboration Tools
The idea behind a visual collaboration tool is to provide a shared, visual interface, where everyone working on a project can be in constant sync with the proceedings of that project. They help in organizing, categorizing and prioritizing every process and step in a project, with sufficient scope for the project managers and admins to keep a watchful eye on everything.
One of the most effective visual collaboration software tools would have to be those deriving from Kanban. Kanbanize has managed to not just digitize the classic Kanban boards, but their set of Kanban tools have far surpassed the standard physical Kanban boards through the addition of features for work organization, project tracking, easier communication and workflow optimization. You can learn more at kanbanize.com and choose the Kanban tools which are right for your company and its operations.
Consider communication tools to be similar to instant messengers, but geared exclusively for business communication. All chats in an enterprise grade communication tool will always be secure from external prying, but depending on how the admin chooses to structure a particular conversation type, it could be a transparent communication line, or a private one.
A common feature offered in all good business communication software is that of letting each member of the company get access to their emails from that very app. In other words, it becomes a centralized hub for all business communication for everybody, but the separation and organization will still be there to keep things easily accessible at all times.
When employees do not have to check multiple email accounts and chat windows constantly, their saved time and energy automatically becomes more productive for the organization.
Supply Chain Management Tools
Supply chain management tools are a broad bunch, which means that because there are so many functions they serve, a company may need more than just one software. However, cloud based, central supply chain management tools are available these days, and they come ready with all features expected from a supply chain management software, but they are only activated in accordance with the needs of their clients.
These boost productivity by streamlining the entire supply chain management process, but some of the key features can be identified as below:
- Inventory management – Tracking, managing, ordering, predicting and maintaining supplies/products/assets/returns
- Delivery logistics management – Maintaining communication, coordinating, tracking, routing/rerouting and updating delivery status in real time
- Warehouse logistics management – Labor management, labelling management and storage optimization
- Client Expectation Predictions – AI assisted, intelligent client demand forecasting for lean manufacturing
Analytical tools are software resources which are specifically created to analyze performance on both macro and micro levels. The performance data from all aspects of the business are taken into account and analyzed to provide data regarding the following:
- Target customer/client expectations and behavioral patterns
- Comparative analysis of the above to identify changes on a Y-O-Y/quarterly basis
- Company performance comparisons with previous years, industry medians and competitors
- Employee & team performance analysis and comparison with prior years
- Forecasting customer behavior, customer demands, expected revenue generations, profit percentage, etc.
- Problem analysis and suggestive solutions; security, low profits, losses, weak links, wasted resources, etc.
- Identification of market trends and comparison of the same with the company’s current business strategies
Using software tools for boosting productivity is no longer even about having an edge, but more about keeping up with the competition. As booming as several sectors of modern industry are today, the competition is also tremendous. If you are outdated in terms of productive capacity, it will become exceedingly hard to remain competitive, or even to remain in business further down the line.
These five types of tools we just discussed are more or less essential for their respective business operations to be productive, but the establishments which are only just adopting them for the first time will, without a doubt, notice significant productivity boosts almost immediately after. It may need to be augmented later on with additional features and toolsets as the company continues to grow in scale, but they are a good starting point.