Lots of good apps out there but who has time to check ’em all out? We do! Here’s a handy curated list for problem solvers.
Need free process mapping software? Looking for a way to brainstorm on a digital whiteboard with your remote team? Need a digital Kanban Board to manage projects? How about an instant visual that tells you what time it is for colleagues and customers in other time zones? It’s all here! These are the apps we’ve tried out for you. Check if there’s anything here to make your life easier or your work more productive. Stay tuned for more app reviews on our podcast, The Just-in-Time Cafe, and tell us about apps that you like, we’d love to hear from you!
Bitmoji lets people design their own personal emojis. Remote teams create expressive cartoon avatars to jazz up long-distance communications. Include evocative sayings with inventive graphics and choose from a huge library of stickers. It’s a great way to infuse personality into team interactions and build community. Let the bitmoji avatars give a “face” to your team and somehow work gets just a little easier!
Divvy is an entirely new way of managing your workspace. It allows you to quickly and efficiently “divvy up” your screen into exact portions. With Divvy, it’s as simple as a single click and drag in the Divvy interface and your window will be resized and moved to a relative portion of the screen. If that seems like too much work, you can go ahead and create as many different shortcuts as you’d like that resize and move your windows.
Working with a cross-country or pan-global team? Don’t want to wake up your colleagues in Oahu to let them know you’re dealing with Northeaster in Maine? Not sure what time it is in Phoenix since Arizona doesn’t use Daylight Savings Time? Time zones can be problematic – and FIO alleviates those woes. Figure it Out (FIO) is a visually stimulating Chrome extension to solve your timezone pain.
The problem with “To Do” lists is that they concentrate on what hasn’t been completed yet. What about all the stuff we got done? This app helps if you want a happier and more productive team. I Done This makes it really easy for your team to provide quick daily status updates by encouraging others to focus on what’s been completed. This makes it really easy for you to use that data to run teams more effectively and more positively.
Need to take those post-its on the wall and turn them into a sharable, digital process map? Don’t have the budget for Visio (or a PC to support it)? There’s a handy, free, tool that provides templates, tools, tutorials and easy ways for teams to share their process maps. LucidChart works on both PCs and Macs and there’s nice “viewer” for those who have not downloaded the app. Not bad!
Mural is a visual collaboration tool that allows remote teams to brainstorm, synthesize, and collaborate from any online-device. It allows users to aggregate links and other web content and displays them in a customizable space that resembles a physical bulletin board or wall.
This one is fun, useful and it looks really slick. You can use this during Process Walks, you can capture the “As Is” state of a workspace before a 5S. Paper is a great way to capture and connect your notes, photos, and sketches. Create checklists, spotlight details in photos, and sketch diagrams with unbeatable speed and ease — Paper is like a wall of sticky notes for everything you want to capture but you don’t need the wall!
Did your improvement effort result in a new process steps? Did you create a checklist to make sure everyone does things the same way? Process Street provides a simple, free and powerful way to manage your team’s recurring checklists and procedures. Create process templates, run multiple instances of the templates as checklists, track progress and collaborate with your team!
Did you know that quizzing yourself makes you smarter? Did you know retention and recall improve when you use flashcards to test your knowledge after training? The Quizlet app removes the need for the flashcards and, once you load it, can quiz you using multiple testing techniques. Make sure your Green Belt training sticks by using our ready-made quizzes. And make your own since Quizlet lets you study anything!
Did you know you had a scanner on your phone? Did you know you could point your phone at a document and have it scan it, turn it into a pdf and have it ready for you to mail? The Scannable app is a big time-saver and it is way better than we are at centering and capturing images. Great for capturing applications after signing them, creating pdfs for colleagues and, of course, getting copies of receipts. No need to save all that paper!. Whether on the go or at the office, send paper on its way and move on.
Need a way to keep a remote Project Team connected? Need to separate work texts from friends and family (not that your project team isn’t full of friends). Slack makes team communication and collaboration easy by bringing it all into one place so the team gets more work done. You can even create sub-teams and call them right from Slack. Check off your to-do list and move your projects forward by bringing the right people, conversations, tools, and information you need together.
Tired of the usual PowerPoint look? Need some new graphics? SlideModel helps subscribers, individuals and businesses to create great looking presentation decks with little effort. You don’t need design skills to create a great Green Belt Storyboard. For an adjustable fee or a through subscription, Slide Model provides instant access to high quality professional presentation templates that can be easily downloaded and edited.
Polling employees is a great way to learn what’s really happening in an organization. Employees know where the problems are and they often have great ways to solve them. But you don’t get access to this team of problem solvers if people don’t speak up. Suggestion Ox is the anonymous online suggestion box that gives you information you can act on immediately. 100% web-based and completely private. Get truly candid feedback from your employees, process improvement teams or customers and surface issues before they become problems.
Where’s that post-it note with my “how to” notes? Why am I the only one who does this? Sweet Process provides an easy way to nail down how exactly each task gets done and provides instant access – and reminders. Get those repetitive tasks out of your head and documented, so you’re not stuck doing everything yourself, or wondering how exactly you did them! Whether you manage a team or you’re hiring your first employee, SweetProcess gives you the systemization you need to scale and grow your business.
Edison said, genius is 10% inspiration and 90% perspiration. But how do you manage that 90%? The TomatoTimer, based on the Pomodoro Technique helps you concentrate brain power in deliberate bursts with carefully placed breaks. Managing the perspiration actually leads to more inspiration. The Pomodoro Technique is a time management technique created by Francesco Cirillo for a more productive way to work and study.
Trello is a remarkably intuitive app that enables team collaboration. Based on the simple “To Do, Doing, Done” lists of a Kanban Board, Trello uses visual management to let you manage tasks, projects or the whole organization. Set deadlines, create checklists and freely communicate with your team members within the boards. Trello’s boards, lists, and cards enable you to organize and prioritize your projects in a fun, flexible and rewarding way.