It’s hard to imagine saying ‘goodbye’ to a paper to-do list. But, more and more people are turning to apps to manage both their professional and personal to-do lists.
Does it mean we are really not jotting down “pick up apples today”? No, it doesn’t. And I don’t think the 3M company is going out of business because of a decrease in Post-It Notes’ ® sales.
But in the professional world, where transparency, accountability and productivity are three measurable KPIs, using a digital task list is not such a bad idea.
Yikes! 317 Task Management Software Apps
A quick look-up on Capterra using the term ‘Task Management Software’ shows there are 317 variations to choose from. But how do you choose the task management software that best fits your needs? For this article, we focus on professional task management and explore some of the different functionality that can help you manage and prioritize your tasks and deadlines.
The Benefits of a Task Management System
Some benefits of using task management software include being able to manage and prioritize all tasks and deadlines in one central place which leads to easy collaboration with team members, and scheduling reminders for timely completion of tasks. Task management software often gets rid of long email communication strings, it cuts down on meetings and often makes employees happier and more productive.
Common Task Management Features
Common software features include alerts and reminders, reporting tools, calendars, file sharing, collaboration tools, and customizable user permissions. With most task management software, you’ll be able to manage to-do lists by creating, assigning, prioritizing, scheduling, and tracking tasks.
Task Management Systems With Bells and Whistles
After you get past the common features, some of the more advanced task management systems have some really interesting functionality. You can get systems that have built-in time tracking which is great for professional services that bill by the hour.
Perhaps the best bells and whistles are apps that make the user experience more enjoyable. In-app jargon this is called “Gamification,” which Wikipedia defines this as:
Gamification is the application of game-design elements and game principles in non-game contexts. Gamification commonly employs game design elements to improve user engagement, organizational productivity, flow, learning, crowdsourcing, employee recruitment and evaluation, ease of use, usefulness of systems, physical exercise, traffic violations, voter apathy, and more. A collection of research on gamification shows that a majority of studies on gamification find it has positive effects on individuals. However, individual and contextual differences exist.
If you believe in ‘getting business done,’ then it is time to review what task management systems would fit into your organization's culture.
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