Apps to Make Running Your Small Business So Very Simple

Apps to Make Running Your Small Business So Very Simple

***Contributed Post***

 Running a small business means being able to do many different tasks. You could be marketing one day, shipping goods, giving advice and bookkeeping, as these are just some of the skills a small business owner needs.  Of course, your business could be so well funded that you can outsource some of the jobs, or employ someone to help you. However, most small businesses do not have that luxury but do not despair, there are apps specially designed to make your life a little easier.

Best Apps For Accounting And Finances

As with all areas of your business, there are many apps to choose from when it comes to the finances of your business. There are ones specifically designed for accounts, investment apps, payroll apps and many others to help with your financial matters. It almost makes accountants obsolete!

Gusto is a very good payroll app, while Freshbooks provides a simple way to manage sales and purchase invoices. For a full package for all your financial needs, QuickBooks is ideal, and so is Wave.

Best Apps For Communications

Good communications are vital to any small business if it is to succeed. Addappt will make it easier to manage your contacts and you can send messages with it. Fuze provides high-definition video calls, and Slack is an instant messaging platform. Skype is probably the best-known video conferencing app, and although many have tried to knock it from its top position, it is still the most used for this purpose.

Best Apps For Time Management

Time is one of your most valuable assets and you need to make sure it is used to its best advantage.  Rescuetime will track how much time you have spent on other apps and websites, and then provide the details in a report. This will let you see where time is being wasted. My Minutes is great if you are having trouble focusing on the most important tasks. You can set goals, such as an hour on social media, and it will track the time spent throughout the day and let you know when you have reached the time limit.

Other Good Apps To Help You

These are just three areas where apps can make life a little less stressful, there are many others. Dropbox has more than 500 million users. It lets you store and share files in the cloud.  It is a very reliable app that can save you much time not having to send emails to several different people. MailChimp can help you to build a mailing list, as well as customize emails to send to all the people on it. This app is simple to use and can be a great marketing tool. Expensify can be linked to your bank and credit card accounts. It keeps track of money that goes in and out of them, including any charged and interest you may have to pay. You can then extract reports of the information in just a few minutes.

While you are building your business it is crucial to keep all your costs as low as possible Using business apps can be a way of doing this, and they help you to keep everything in order.

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Project Management Techniques for You and Your New VA

Project Management Techniques for You and Your New VA

Typically when you work with a virtual assistant, it means you will have to be in touch with each other quite regularly.  This also involves sending images and files as well as other types of data.   The way you communicate together will depend mostly on you, as well as your VA’s, personal choice.  Where some people prefer to work casually - just emails and telephone calls - others would much rather use a Project Management system.

Here are a few ways you can share projects/tasks with your Virtual Assistant:

Email – One of the more popular ways of sending your projects to your VA is via email. Perhaps emails is the option that you both would prefer.  It does give you something that you or your VA can refer back to if you ever have to recheck on some instructions or content given.

Phone/Skype - for certain assignments that need more detailed instructions that may be too difficult to explain by email, then it would be a better idea to speak to each other by phone or Skype.  There is, however, a setback with this method, in that you don’t have a paper trail.  In that case, it would be a good idea to phone/Skype your VA and follow that up with a short email with the key notes which your VA may need and can easily refer to while doing that particular assignment.

There are apps out there that can record your Skype calls.  Which is another way to refer back to the conversation. Personally, I have not used them but here’s a list supplied by Skype.

Dropbox -  Now, here is a great little treasure.  Chances are, that you probably already know about this product and most likely used it to store your photos and share with family and friends.   This product is simple to set up files that you and your VA can share and add to – or edit.  One of my favorite features of Dropbox is that when you edit your documents and save them, it will be synced between yourself and your VA, so you can always be on top of any changes, rather than have to scan documents back and forth between yourselves and have to wait for replies/confirmations etc. from each other

Another great feature is that you can use Dropbox and co-ordinate with your emails by very easily uploading files to the Dropbox folder and emailing your VA particular instructions that you need to have done – OR – to make it even easier (if you and your VA prefer) you can eliminate the whole email procedure by writing out instructions/log-in info etc. and upload it right into the same Dropbox folder.  So easy!   Just be certain to tag your VA in the @mention option that Dropbox now offers so they become notified (and your VA will return the favor when task is complete).

Project management systems – You will find that some VAs would rather work, as described above, with stricter guidelines and use a Project Management system.  If your VA works this way, then you will be added into their project management system as a New Client/Project – you will be given the login information in order to access your account – Now this is where you will be doing all your communicating with the VA and send the VA your projects etc.

BASECAMP is one of the more familiar Project Management systems that you might have already heard of and some other favorites are Asana and Teamwork to name but a few.

In person – should you be fortunate enough to find a local VA, then you can have the luxury of meeting in person on a regular basis to discuss the current and upcoming projects for the near future.

The above are just a few of the more popular methods of working with a VA in your online business - Eventually, you and your VA can discuss together to figure out the best form of communication that will work better for the both of you.

Robyn here! I’ve had a passion for technology for as long as I can remember. I bring a variety of skills and experience to any business, which have been gained with over 25 years of experience as an administrative and IT professional. Learn more…

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