One day, I would like to see the IPR office go completely paperless. There, I’ve said it.
I have heard of other companies doing this and as I look around my office and see a box of business cards that have never been inputted into a CRM, file cabinets collecting dust from files from 2010, and sticky notes overwhelming my computer screen. As a nearly four-year-old business, I know that this paperwork is just going to pile up more and I am growing more and more anxious about this!
As a digital-savvy PR firm, with (if I may say so myself) a pretty tech-friendly owner, I hate that feeling of working out of the office and remembering a piece of paper sitting on your desk. We use plenty of apps in the office that are helping to move us in that direction. All of our files are on a shared Dropbox for Teams account. Our email is on an exchange server. Our weekly to do lists, grocery reminders, notes to each other and more are all saved on Evernote.
People often ask me about other productivity apps that I’m using. Besides the fun ones I’m into today (Beautiful Mess which is making my instagrams so pretty, FaceJuggler is still cracking me up for hours, and Audible making my long car rides fly by)… here are a few more of my personal favorites that are helping me get my job done, more seamlessly and getting us to be paper-free, one day.
Since the first client I signed, I have been using Freshbooks for invoicing clients. It is a great tool for any business owner to keep track of your invoices. The application automatically keeps track of automatic billing, emails clients payment reminders, tracks the time it takes for clients to pay, and more. We also track intern hours through Freshbooks and I recently discovered the time tracking capabilities through a stopwatch on the app. Especially now that I can deposit checks from my phone on the go, this app has become incredibly valuable!
In working a client event a few weeks ago, we were selling tickets through Eentbrite and in the 10 minutes after printing the final list from home and showing up at the event, 90 more people purchased their tickets. We downloaded the app from the event in a state of panic, assuming it would give a basic list of who had purchased, causing confusion between the cross-referencing. The user interface is incredibly clean and seamless to use. I will never be printing an event list again!
This is an app that integrates with Evernote, which we use daily. I am still testing it out but do really like it since learning about it at SXSW. It is a card scanner app, which is a dime a dozen now but actually does work, and also ties in with your calendar. Hello allows you to: see a complete list of your past meetings with an individual, remind you where you met, capture additional information from Facebook and LinkedIn, and, of course, add browse-able notes that tie into your Evernote.
I’m a pretty visual note taker. Anyone who has sat next to me in a meeting has seen the arrows, stars, underlining, bolding that I do to emphasize thoughts. This app is great on the iPad and lets you actually draw out ideas and then save it as a PDF.
I am notorious for the easiest passwords on the planet in order to remember them across different websites. I am pretty naive and trusting and luckily nothing bad has happened… YET. So this weekend, rather than having all of my passwords stored on a document somewhere, I set up 1Password (it’s a little pricy, but worth it!). This app will remember all of my passwords for me, I just have to log into 1Password on the device. Everything is done very securely so all you have to remember is your 1Password login information.
Doodle has recently been my favorite tool for scheduling meeting times with large groups of people – we have used it to schedule meetings with multiple parties for a meeting, or just trying to find a night when all my friends are free to have a skype call. It’s easy – you just create polls with times that you are available to meet and rank a few options. Everyone else fills in his or her schedules too and you have seamlessly found a time that works for everyone!