It’s no secret that the biggest hindrance to business productivity is constant email interruptions.
Just as you’re getting into the flow of completing a task or project, you hear a *ping* sound, letting you know a new email has landed in your inbox. Can you resist the urge to check it right away? Of course not, you’re only a mere human.
The problem is, that once your focus is interrupted, it takes a long time to get back into the groove of what you were doing prior to the interruption.
In fact, it takes the average person up to 20 minutes to get back into a state of deep concentration. Now imagine getting interrupted by emails multiple times a day, how much is that going to cost you or your team in lost productivity?
Thankfully there is a range of productivity tools to help you with this problem. In this article, we’ll outline the top 7 productivity tools to increase efficiency in your business.
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SaneBox is a clever tool that discerns how important an email is before it ever hits your inbox. It pushes messages it deems as not important into dedicated folders so that you don’t get interrupted while you’re working.
This way, only critical messages appear in your inbox. The rest can be checked at a time more suitable for you, without interrupting your work day.
And don’t worry, SaneBox never deletes any of your emails, it simply sweeps them away into specified folders.
Other features of SaneBox include a ‘Do Not Disturb’ feature, custom training folders, and reply tracking features. You can even rediscover lost connections you may have forgotten about or use your network to gain new connections!
SaneBox works with any email client, service, or device. They simply add a folder to your current email setup and filter unimportant emails there.
Whether you use Gmail, Office 365, Yahoo, iCloud, or anything else – SaneBox has got your inbox covered!
Unlike SaneBox, Mailbird is only available to use on Windows. This email tool allows you to connect multiple email accounts and streamline everything into a single feed.
It’s a handy tool if you have a number of different email addresses to check each day and would like to be able to see everything in one place.
People who are into aesthetics will like that they can change the color scheme and customize alerts. The setup is simple, and Mailbird can also be connected to other business apps such as Asana and Slack.
If you’re a Windows user, this could be a good option for you. Having all your messages and notifications in one place will save you valuable time.
Are you a Microsoft email user? If so, you might like to check out Hiri. Hiri is an email productivity tool exclusively available for Microsoft email. This includes; Outlook, Office 365, Microsoft Exchange, Live, Hotmail, and MSN.
Hiri gives you the ability to filter messages based on whether you need to respond to them, or if you can look at them at a more convenient time. You can also turn emails into tasks if you need to take action on them. If you’re a Microsoft user, this could be the productivity tool for you.
If your work requires you to write in several languages throughout the day and you aren’t completely fluent in every language, eM Client could be the email productivity tool for you. This tool includes built-in language translation features – perfect for those who are bi-lingual.
That being said, this tool is only available on Windows. It also comes with a $50 price tag, which is quite steep for a tool like this, however, it’s only a one-time fee. If your productivity could be improved with language translation features, it could be well worth the investment.
Drag is an interesting email management tool that turns your Gmail emails into cards – not unlike Trello. You can move them around the dashboard to track their status. Drag allows you to make columns for placing each email.
For instance, you could have an ‘Urgent’ column for emails that must be replied to today, a ‘Read later’ column for newsletter-type email, and so on. If you have an email that multiple people have access to, Drag could be a good fit for your team as it allows users to visually see what needs actioning.
Active Inbox is an email productivity tool that allows you to turn your emails into ‘tasks’. With Active Inbox you can set deadlines on your emails. That way if you don’t want to respond to an email right away, the deadline will remind you to respond by a certain time so that you don’t forget about it.
If the email requires an in-depth response you can also assign subtasks to it, so that way you’ll know what information you need to gather before you hit the reply button. You can also pin emails to the top of your inbox, to remind you to respond.
Active Inbox is a good option for those who email inbox functions more like a ‘to-do’ list.
Boomerang is another email management tool available exclusively on Gmail. It tracks messages you send and alerts you if a recipient doesn’t respond to your email within a specified timeframe.
This email management tool is good for business owners who may not need full-scale email productivity software but would like help tracking the emails they send.
Lost productivity due to constant email interruptions is a problem worth addressing in your business.
With one of these handy email management tools, you can save time lost on responding to unimportant emails and ensure you and your team spend your work days focusing on income-producing activities.