Successful businesses know one thing that most businesses don’t pay attention to: it is all about efficiency. Whether you are thinking of code, design or customer support, managing your activities efficiently helps to save time, reduce costs and deliver better results. Small businesses and startups can take advantage of many apps for product development.
For many startups, collaboration is the order of the day. Unfortunately, collaboration can eat on precious time if there are no systems in place to manage teams and monitor events. Luckily, there are a number of apps that can fast track your business to efficiency. Here are, in no particular order, our top five picks that we actually use at ChargeBee:
Asana helps teams to share task lists, plan, organize and stay in sync. Instead of keeping track with team members through the tedious emails and meetings, Asana makes communication easier. With the web application, you can move fast and do more.
Asana captures everything that your team is doing and planning in one place. Instead of sending emails, notebooks, whiteboard and documents to different team members, the tasks are shared across the team. Everyone in your team will know what everyone else is working on and this helps to keep the team in sync. As tasks get completed, team members receive an email notification on the status.
Asana is free for up to 30 members, after which the pricing starts at $100/month.
HackPad is a new breed of Wiki that is much simpler to use and essential for businesses. With HackPad, you can plan events, share notes, write company knowledgebase and other collaborative events in a fun way. This live group word-processing app is fully social. You can log in with your Facebook or Google account and start creating and editing documents.
Every participating user is given a unique color bar and edits are made live. Some of the features of the app include: you can see who wrote what, document change history, remove invited people from the documents and others.
If you are working with a remote team, HackPad is an essential app for your business and its free.
GitHub is another must-have app for code projects. Whether you are working on open source of private development projects, you need a collaborative environment that will help you to review and manage code easily. If you are shipping code often, you will work more efficiently and prevent catastrophic code mistakes with a system that can manage and store revisions of your projects. This is what GitHub does.
Github has “Free for Open Source” option but if you need private repositories, the plan starts from $12/month/
4. Splunk Storm
If you are logging massive amounts of data, you need a solution that can handle and offer an easy way of searching and interpreting the data. This is what Splunk Storm is all about. As you develop your SaaS business, logs are important to understand the actions of your market and do performance tuning.
Splunk Storm is a cloud app that offers log and event data from your application, enabling real-time and historical data search, link transactions across application stack, correlate values across different data types, and detection of trends in critical operational parameters.
Splunk Storm has a free plan which has 1 GB data storage limit. If you need more storage then the pricing starts from $20/month.
How do you know if your website is not accessible in Hong Kong? Simply use Pingdom. Pingdom helps businesses to monitor whether their websites and servers are accessible from multiple locations on the internet. The web monitoring service double checks your sites, email servers, FTP servers and other services to determine their status. You can configure to be alerted of downtimes through Twitter, text (SMS), email, or Android or iPhone app notifications.
Live Monitoring of ChargeBee Website can be viewed here.
Pingdom lets you monitor one website for free. If you need more monitoring the pricing starts from $9.95 per month.
Oh, we almost forgot. There is a 6th app that we use to the core at ChargeBee.
If you’re in the SaaS business you understand the importance of customer service. FreshDesk helps you to be on top of your support and has a fun side to it as well. It required us no training to get started, its that simple. It has an awesome look/feel and your customer support agents will love it. Going back to the fun side, you can make your support interesting with “FreshDesk Arcade”, which lets you to gamify your support organization.
FreshDesk has all the features that you’ll look for in a help desk software and much more than its competitors. It has ticket management, knowledge base, time tracking tools, forums, self service portals, etc.
It is free for the first 3 users and if you need more users/features, pricing starts from $15/month/agent.
These are the top 6 apps that our developers and employees use. What productivity apps do you use in your business? Do you use any of the 6 apps above? Please share using the comments box below.