Get to Work: The Top Productivity Apps Used at ITS HQ - ITS Tactical

Shop the ITS Store!

 

Get to Work: The Top Productivity Apps Used at ITS HQ

By The ITS Crew

apps-main-02

We wear a lot of hats here at ITS, so efficiency and productivity are paramount. Whether it’s keeping track of upcoming products or putting together the latest article, the tools we use enable us to get even more work done. Today, we’re highlighting a few apps that we rely on for productivity here at ITS HQ.

OmniFocus

omnifocus-main

We’re big proponents of David Allen’s Getting Things Done here at ITS and Bryan has gone into using this system in depth in a previous article and on a recent episode of Gear Tasting. The basic tenant of GTD is to collect everything you have to do in your life (stuff) and process it to find the next action to move it along.

This simple process can get out of hand as more and more actions appear, but tracking everything is extremely important. OmniFocus is one of the best software tools around for the GTD method. Featuring all of the necessities to follow the GTD process, including Inbox, Projects and Contexts, OmniFocus allows you to follow David Allen’s method digitally. It also interfaces with Siri on the iPhone, allowing you to quickly add things to your inbox to process later.

Evernote

evernote-main

When it comes to note taking, it’s hard to beat Evernote. Evernote is a cloud based note taking program that allows you to create and edit notes on a computer or mobile device. Evernote’s quick syncing means that you can go from creating a note on your phone to editing the same note on your laptop or desktop within a few seconds.

One of the most powerful features of Evernote Documents is sharing. By sharing a note with another user, both can see and edit to make changes or highlight certain items. This is extremely helpful when tracking things like brainstorming or idea sessions.

With the use of tags and a great search function, it’s also easy to track down that one note about that one thing that you can only remember highlights of. In addition to text notes, you can also insert pictures and other media to save everything inside your notebook.

Dropbox

dropbox-main

File sharing through the cloud can be a big headache, especially when it comes to things like larger video or audio files. Dropbox enables us to create folders that can be accessed from anywhere. Dropbox’s comment feature also makes it easy to communicate for specific files and the accessibility features mean that we can share individual files or entire folder with anyone.

Overcast

overcast-main

We’re big Podcast fans here at ITS and if you’re unfamiliar with them, we recommend you check out Ridiculous Dialogue, our Podcast that offers a peek behind the curtain here at ITS HQ. While there are a multitude of programs for listening to Podcasts, one of our favorites is Overcast.

Overcast offers a great interface and several helpful features, including Voice Boost for leveling out the volume in a Podcast and Smart Speed, which shortens the gaps of silence that you’ll find in some shows. (We’re looking at you, NPR.)

Overcast not only offers a web based player, but a mobile app as well. This saves your position in the shows you’re listening to and allows you to pick back up where you left off, no matter what device you pick up.

Audible

audible-main

Yet another listening program, Audible is one of the best platforms for listening to audiobooks. When we’re not plugged into the latest episode of a Podcast, we’re listening to the latest audiobook we’ve downloaded. While a subscription to Audible does cost $15 a month, your account receives a credit that’s good for one audiobook download per month.

One great book we’ve recently been listening to is The Gift of Fear by Gavin De Becker, which we’ve previously highlighted on ITS before.

Slack

slack-main

For most businesses, inter-office communication travels through email and throughout the day, some people may receive hundreds of internal emails. The creators of Slack realized that inter-office email was eating up a big amount of productivity and they set out to create a great business-oriented instant messaging app. The result is an awesome app that saves a ton of time and offers a lot of features.

Slack utilizes group chats and individual chats. It’s great for sharing information team-wide or just asking an individual person a quick question. After switching to Slack, we’ve definitely seen a decrease in emails between one another and it’s made communication much faster throughout the team.

What apps are you using in your life to increase your productivity? Let us know in the comments below.

Are you getting more than 14¢ of value per day from ITS?

Thanks to the generosity of our supporting members, we’ve eliminated annoying ads and obtrusive content. We want your experience here at ITS to be beneficial and enjoyable.

At ITS, our goal is to provide different methods, ideas and knowledge that could one day save your life. If you’re interested in supporting our mission and joining our growing community of supporters, click below to learn more.

Discussion

  • edgargvaldes

    I recently switched from Omnifocus to Wunderlist. Omnifocus is great but I needed a solution that would run on different platforms. This is mainly because I’m platform agnostic and run Linux, OS X and Windows as well as have an android phone. 
    I’ve only been using Wunderlist for about a week but so far I really like it. I like that there’s a web interface I can use if needed and  I can share tasks/to-do’s with others if I’m working with a group on a set of tasks. Beyond that you can still add subtasks, set reminders, add notes to your to-dos,  attach files and organize them all to lists and all your lists into folders. You also still have an inbox folder that you can braindump all the to-do’s you may have and then organize them after the fact. Pretty much all I require in a to-do task manager. 

    I’m currently using the free version but there is also a paid version which gives you some extras such as increasing the file size from 5MB to unlimited, increase the subtasks from 25 to unlimited and the number of assigned to-do’s from 25 to unlmited. I’ll be using the free for a while before deciding on upgrading or not. 
    The only downside is that I can’t host the content myself like I can with Omnifocus but if you’re ok with having your tasks in the cloud then Wunderlist is a good alternative to Omnifocus especially if you’re not in the OS x/iPhone world.

  • lancehill

    So far for our team, the perfect (ok…nothing’s ever perfect) cocktail of productivity apps has been: 

    Slack: Team communication
    Dropbox: File sharing
    Google Docs: Collaborative documents and spreadsheets that everyone needs access to
    Asana: Project management and todos
    Help Scout: Customer communication

  • Phil Montgomery

    Great list – I’d also vote for a look at Google Docs – nothing quite like seeing multiple people in a document or spreadsheet at the same time – prevents the “emailing around”.

Do you have what you need to prevail?

Shop the ITS Store for exclusive merchandise, equipment and hard to find tactical gear.

Do you have what you need to prevail? Tap the button below to see what you’re missing.