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10 apps for smarter working

Updated: 30 Aug 2016



Mobile phones and devices are having the same revolutionary effect on our working lives that the advent of the computer had decades ago.

Rapid advances in technology mean there is now a wide range of hardware and software to help organise and streamline one’s working life.

“At Hays, we’ve seen mobile job searching soar in recent years, as job seekers increasingly choose to use a smartphone to search and apply for jobs anytime, anywhere. And once they’ve secured that job, the use of mobile apps doesn’t stop there; it extends into the everyday working life of the majority of employees”, says Christine Wright, Managing Director of Hays in Asia.  

There are many apps available in the modern working world that can be put to good use by employees. For employers, the key to harnessing these tools and boosting productivity lies in fostering harmony between your people and the technology you provide them with to perform their best.

“Tech tools can be daunting for some, especially the older section of your employee population, so it pays to ensure they’re adequately trained and equipped in using digital productivity boosting tools. Lunch & learns are a great way of training, guiding and sharing tips for using certain programmes or apps,” advises Christine.

So whether you’re an employer or employee looking to boost productivity at work, here are Hays’ top 10 picks of apps to consider:

1. Slack: an instant messaging program which can be used on any device and allows employees to communicate without the need for texting or emailing. It allows you the choice of either communicating with a group (openly or privately) or speaking with a colleague directly. Slack enables you to, “centralize all your notifications, from sales to tech support, social media and more, into one searchable place where your team can discuss and take action on each”.


2. LastPass: a password manager which remembers everything by securely encrypting all your passwords in a private account. With cyber-attacks becoming increasingly common, it makes sense to store all of your precious passwords in a safe place – only accessible by fingerprint.


3. Evernote: describes itself as, “the productivity app that keeps your projects, ideas, and inspiration handy across all of your digital devices”. It’s useful for recording information (whether regular text, a photograph, a voice memo etc), which you can then access across all of your devices. Once saved you can either painlessly search to bring up past ‘notes’ or share ‘notes’ with colleagues.


4. RescueTime: allows you to track your progress and productivity – or lack thereof – throughout the day. The program runs in the background on your device, and tracks your time spent on various applications and websites, giving you detailed reports on your activity.


5. Splashtop: an app which allows you to access all of the files you have stored on your computer remotely by gaining access to that specific computer, rather than a storage cloud. This is particularly useful when you’re outside of the office and have forgotten to send yourself a file for a meeting.


6. Google Docs: perhaps the most widely used, it’s the perfect platform for collaboration with colleagues; allowing you to create and edit web-based documents. It’s very simple to use, and means that you no longer have to waste time and inbox space by emailing documents to yourself.


7. UberConference: is an alternative to traditional conference call programs. The app positions itself as the “stress-free conference call”, as it doesn’t require the user to enter two or three different pins, and it also displays who is talking at all times, avoiding crossover conversations.


8. Pocket: allows you to bookmark interesting articles so you can access them later on when you have a spare moment to read them. It’s great for stockpiling interesting news stories and motivational pieces for while on your commute.

9. GoodReader: the ultimate PDF management tool which gives you the ability to not only open, edit, annotate and save PDF documents, but also to rearrange pages, extract pages as individual files, import pages from other files and split documents.


10. Mindfulness Daily: maintaining a healthy work-life balance is vital to boosting productivity and Mindfulness Daily can help you keep your cool through meditation before, after or even during your working day. It allows you to choose specific times of the day when you’d like to practice your meditation, and sends you a notification for when it’s time to begin. It also provides soothing soundtracks, lessons and imagery to help you get in the zone.


Hays, the world’s leading recruiting experts in qualified, professional and skilled people.


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About Hays

Hays plc (the "Group") is a leading global professional recruiting group. The Group is the expert at recruiting qualified, professional and skilled people worldwide, being the market leader in the UK and Asia Pacific and one of the market leaders in Continental Europe and Latin America. The Group operates across the private and public sectors, dealing in permanent positions, contract roles and temporary assignments. As at 31 December 2015 the Group employed 9,420 staff operating from 248 offices in 33 countries across 20 specialisms. For the year ended 30 June 2015:


– the Group reported net fees of £764.2 million and operating profit (pre-exceptional items) of £164.1 million;

– the Group placed around 63,000 candidates into permanent jobs and around 200,000 people into temporary assignments;

– 23% of Group net fees were generated in Asia Pacific, 41% in Continental Europe & RoW (CERoW) and 36% in the United Kingdom & Ireland;

– the temporary placement business represented 58% of net fees and the permanent placement business represented 42% of net fees;

– Hays operates in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Chile, China, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UAE, the UK and the USA.

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