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10 Free Apps Every Entrepreneur Should Have

10 Free Apps Every Entrepreneur Should Have

Managing your own company shouldn’t be that hard when you can have apps that can make your life easier. From a time tracking app to a cloud data integration software, these tools will help you run your business smoothly and efficiently without spending a cent. Here’s a list of free apps every entrepreneur should have.

1. TMetric

Whether you have a small business or a big company, this simple time tracking app is your new partner in managing projects and employees. TMetric works as an activity timer, which you can view in timeline mode, to better manage and analyze your everyday activities. For a business owner or team manager, it’s the perfect tool to monitor your employees or team members’ productivity and task status. A team leader can view what websites and applications a project member visited during a task using the desktop version of TMetric. It can easily be integrated with popular project management platforms like Jira, RedMine, Asana, Trello, Basecamp, and more. The user friendliness of this time tracking software is its best feature, aside from the fact that it’s totally free. Adding new tasks or breaks is very straightforward. No fancy, complicated buttons or options, just a clean, organized dashboard of your work timeline. Currently, TMetric doesn’t have a paid premium version so you can enjoy its full features at zero cost.

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    tmetric app 02

      Here’s a screenshot of Tmetric’s integration with Jira software:

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      Jira Integration

        2. Taskworld

        Are you an entrepreneur who has a thing for graphs and charts? Then you will definitely like Taskworld. Visualize your task status in a nice, sleek graph, or critical areas in a project highlighted on a neat bar chart. This is a virtual office for your business where people can create personal chat messages, create multiple workspaces, and add an unlimited number of members. Speaking of unlimited, you’ll also get an unlimited file storage to secure data sharing if you get the Enterprise version. Don’t worry, this is still free for a team of five people — perfect for startup owners working on a budget.

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          3. Boomerang

          Are you dealing with hundreds of emails everyday? There are two different kinds of emails: those that you need to drop everything and reply to hastily, and those that you can say, “Nah, maybe later.”

          Boomerang is a little plugin which basically allows you to remove non time-sensitive emails from your inbox until a specific date you set when they will be “boomeranged” back to your inbox. That explains the name. Boomerang can be synced with Gmail, Google Apps for Work, and Microsoft Outlook. It has real-time calendar, email scheduling, follow-up reminders, and inbox pause. Boomerang Basic is free and includes 10 message credits per month, reminders, response tracking, and clicks tracking.

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            4. Tasytt

            Hiring — just hearing this word is already exhausting. Aside from the tedious recruitment and interview process, you have to deal with paperworks and training. That’s where Tasytt enters the picture. It makes team member onboarding streamlined so you have more time managing your business. This app appeals to millennials and, in an age where everything is digital, Tasytt fits in nicely. It’s mobile, so you can fill out forms or access training materials on-the-go. They are launching a “freemium” version so register now.

            tasytt app

              5. ArmorText

              If you’re looking for complete control and privacy of your messages, be it on mobile or desktop, ArmorText is the perfect solution for that. It secures your data like an armor (thus the name) so you alone, or only your team if you’re using group messaging, can access it. The app features an integrated media library and encrypted file storage. It boasts zero provider access, meaning ArmorText never holds keys to decrypt, mine, or turn over your data. This app runs on various platforms so you can switch from your iOS phone to your desktop computer seamlessly.

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                6. EasilyDo

                Wouldn’t it be nice if you could manage everything with just a tap on your phone? Manage every email, shipment, meeting, even travelling with a tiny but powerful app called EasilyDo. It’s your personalized virtual assistant right from your pocket. The free version gives you access to more than 40 features and up to five new contacts every month. If you want a simple, fast, and organized email experience, then EasilyDo is for you.

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                  7. UpKeep

                  Asset management was a pain before UpKeep was introduced. It’s a tool that allows business owners to quickly and efficiently handle work order and task management for technicians who are in the field. OnKeep creates a seamless and smooth transaction between managers and technicians. They are mobile-first app so you can deal with your assets on the go. Who said enterprise software should be complicated? They offer unlimited requesters, vendor users, and work orders on their free version. They also have a built-in messaging and chat system, barcode scanners, and more!

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                    8. VARIDESK Standing Timer

                    Interested in staying active while managing your business? Burn calories while working. Yes, you read that right. The VARIDESK Standing Timer works like a charm in notifying you when it’s time to switch from a sitting to a standing position. Just set the number of minutes you would like to sit and stand and let the app handle the rest. You can monitor your progress each day using its sleek main user interface. To measure how many calories you burned, simply enter your weight and it will calculate how many calories you burned while standing.

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                    varidesk app

                      9. Stringify

                      If you know IFTTT, imagine that on steroids and you’ll have Stringify. As a business owner, you want everything in sync with you. Everything should keep up with you and not the other way around. Stringify redefines “internet of things.”

                      Here’s an example of automation from their site, “When I park my car in the city…Then Yelp me three great restaurants, tweet my location, and send me a notification of where I parked.” This easy drag and drop app can open the lights and play your jam as you walk inside your home. Imagine what else it can do.

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                        10. Skyvia

                        Data integration is inevitable in any company that uses computers. Skyvia Data Integration doesn’t need coding, special training, and it all happens in a cloud. Skyvia can be useful for easy data migration from one premise to cloud apps. It can keep your cloud apps (Salesforce, Quickbooks, Mailchmp, etc.) in sync for business process automation. You can easily import data to cloud applications and databases, then export it into a CSV file anytime, anywhere! If needed, you can make a copy of your cloud data and store it in relational databases for future analysis and reporting. All of these features are completely free for now.

                        skyvia app

                          Featured photo credit: Ed Gregory via stokpic.com

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                          Jane Dizon

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                          Last Updated on April 6, 2020

                          How to Make a Career Change at 50 for Great Opportunities

                          How to Make a Career Change at 50 for Great Opportunities

                          Turning 50 is a milestone in anyone’s life, after all you are half way to 100! But seriously, turning 50 is often a time in life when people can sit back and take a look at where they’ve been and contemplate what the future holds.

                          Can you change careers at 50? It’s not uncommon for people in their 50’s to consider a career change, after all if you’ve spent 20 to 30 years in a career, chances are that some of the bloom is off the rose.

                          Often, when we are starting out in our 20’s, we choose a career path based on factors that are no longer relevant to us in our 50’s. Things like our parents’ expectations, a fast paced exciting lifestyle or the lure of making a lot of money can all be motivating factors in our 20’s.

                          But in our 50’s, those have given way to other priorities. Things like the desire to spend more time with family and friends, a slower paced less stressful lifestyle, the need to care for a sick spouse or elderly parents can all contribute to wanting a career change in your 50’s.

                          Just like any big life changing event, changing careers is scary. The good news is that just like most things we are scared of, the fear is mostly in our own head.

                          Understanding how to go about a career change at 50 and what you can expect should help reduce the anxiety and fear of the unknown.

                          What are Your Goals for a Career Change?

                          As in any endeavor, having properly defined goals will help you to determine the best path to take.

                          What are you looking for in a new career? Choosing a slower less stressful position that gives you more time with family and friends may sound ideal, but you’ll often find that you’re giving up some income and job satisfaction in the process.

                          Conversely, if your goal is to quit a job that is sucking the life from your soul to pursue a lifelong passion. You might be trading quality time with family and friends for job satisfaction.

                          Neither decision is wrong or bad, you just need to be aware of the potential pitfalls of any decision you make.

                          Types of Career Changes at 50+

                          There are four main types of career changes that people make in their 50’s. Each type has it’s unique set of challenges and will very in the degree of preparation required to make the change.

                          Industry Career Change

                          In this career change, a person remains in the same field but switches industries.

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                          With an industry change, a person takes their set of skills and applies them to an industry that they have no previous experience in.

                          An example would be a salesperson in the oil and gas industry becoming a salesperson for a media (advertising) company. They are taking their skill set (selling) and applying it to a different industry (media).

                          This type of career change is best accomplished by doing a lot of homework on the industry you want to get into as well as networking within the industry.

                          Functional Career Change

                          A functional career change would be a change of careers within the same industry.

                          For example, an accountant at a pharmaceutical company who changes careers to become a human resources manager. It may or may not be with the same company, but they remain within the pharmaceutical industry. In this case, they are leaving one set of skills behind (accounting) to develop a new set (human resource) within the same industry.

                          In a functional career change, new or additional training as well as certifications may be required in order to make the switch. If you are considering a functional career change, you can start by getting any training or certifications needed either online, through trade associations or at your local community college.

                          Double Career Change

                          This is the most challenging career change of all. A person doing a double career change is switching both a career and an industry.

                          An example of a double change would be an airline pilot quitting to pursue their dream of producing rock music. In that case, they are leaving both the aviation industry and a specific skill set (piloting) for a completely unrelated industry and career.

                          When considering a double career change, start preparing by getting any needed training or certifications first. Then you can get your foot in the door by taking an apprenticeship or part time job.

                          With a double change, it’s not uncommon to have to start out at the bottom as you are asking an employer to take a chance on someone without any experience or work history in the industry.

                          Entrepreneurial Career Change

                          Probably one of the most common career changes made by people in their 50’s is the entrepreneurial career change.

                          After 20 to 30 years of working for “Corporate America”, a lot of people become disillusioned with the monotony, politics and inefficiency of the corporate world. Many of us dream of having our own business and being our own boss.

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                          By this time in our life, we have saved some money and the financial pressures we had with young children have passed; so it’s a perfect time to spread our entrepreneurial wings.

                          Entrepreneurial career changes can be within the same industry and using your existing knowledge and contacts to start a similar business competing within the same industry. Or it can be completely unrelated to your former industry and based on personal interests, passions or hobbies.

                          A good example would be someone who played golf as a hobby starting an affiliate marketing website selling golf clubs. If you are considering an entrepreneurial career change, there are a lot of very good free resources available on the internet. Just be sure to do your homework.

                          Practical Tips on Making a Career Change at 50+

                          So you’ve decided to take the plunge and make a career switch in your 50’s. No matter what your reasons or what type of a career change you are embarking on, here are some helpful hints to make the transition easier:

                          1. Deal with the Fear

                          As stated earlier, any big life change comes with both fear and anxiety. Things never seem to go as smoothly as planned, you will always have bumps and roadblocks along the way. By recognizing this and even planning for it, you are less likely to let these issues derail your progress.

                          If you find yourself becoming discouraged by all of the stumbling blocks, there are always resources to help. Contacting a career coach is a good place to start, they can help you with an overall strategy for your career change as well as the interview and hiring process, resume writing / updating and more. Just Google “Career Coach” for your options.

                          I also recommend using the services of a professional counselor or therapist to help deal with the stress and anxiety of this major life event.

                          It’s always good to have an unbiased third party to help you work through the problems that inevitably arise.

                          2. Know Your “Why”

                          It’s important that you have a clear understanding of the “why” you are making this career change. Is it to have more free time, reduce stress, follow a passion or be your own boss?

                          Having a clear understanding of you personal “why” will influence every decision in this process. Knowing your “why” and keeping it in mind also serves as a motivator to help you reach your goals.

                          3. Be Realistic

                          Take an inventory of both your strengths and weaknesses. Are your organizational skills less than stellar? Then, becoming a wedding planner is probably not a good idea.

                          This is an area where having honest outside input can be really helpful. Most of us are not very good at accurately assessing our abilities. It’s a universal human trait to exaggerate our abilities while diminishing our weaknesses.

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                          Requesting honest feedback from friends and co-workers is a good place to start, but this is another area where a career coach can come in handy.

                          4. Consider an Ad-Vocation

                          Sometimes, making a career change all at once is just too big of a change. Issues like a severely reduced income, geography and lack of benefits can all be impediments to your career change. In those cases, you may want to start your new career as an ad-vocation.

                          An ad-vocation is a second or ad-on vocation in addition to your primary vocation. Things like a part-time job, consulting or even a side business can all be ad-vocations.

                          The benefit of having an ad-vocation is being able to build experience a reputation and contacts in the new field while maintaining all the benefits of your current job.

                          5. Update Your Skills

                          Whether it means acquiring new certifications or going back to school to get your cosmetology licence, having the right training is the foundation for a successful career change.

                          The great thing about changing careers now is that almost any training or certifications needed can be free or at very little cost online. Check with trade associations, industry websites and discussion groups for any requirements you may need.

                          Learn How to Cultivate Continuous Learning to Stay Competitive.

                          6. Start Re-Branding Yourself Now

                          Use the internet and social media to change the way you present yourself online.

                          Changing your LinkedIn profile is a good way to show prospective employers that you are serious about a career change.

                          Joining Facebook groups, trade associations and discussion boards as well as attending conventions is a great way to start building a network while you learn.

                          Here’re some Personal Branding Basics You Need to Know for Career Success.

                          7. Overhaul Your Resume

                          Most of us have heard the advice to update our resume every six months, and most of us promptly ignore that advice and only update our resume when we need it.

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                          When making a career change, updating is not enough; this calls for a complete overhaul of your resume. Chances are that your current resume was designed around your old career which may or may not apply to your new goals.

                          Crafting a new resume emphasizing your strengths for the new position your looking for is key. There are many places that will help you craft a resume online and it is a service included with most career coaching services.

                          8. Know Your Timeline

                          There are a lot of factors when it comes to how long it will take to make the career change.

                          Industry and Functional career changes tend to be the easiest to do and therefore can be accomplished in the shortest period of time. While the Double Career Change and the Entrepreneurial Career Change both require more effort and thus time.

                          There are also personal factors involved in the time it will take to switch careers.

                          Generally speaking the more you are willing to be flexible with both compensation and geography, the shorter time it will take to make the switch.

                          Final Thoughts

                          Changing careers at anytime can be stressful, but for those of us who are 50 or above, it can seem to be an overwhelming task fraught with pitfalls and self doubt.

                          Prospective employers know the benefits that come with more mature employees. Things like a wealth of experience, a proven work history and deeper understanding of corporate culture are all things that older workers bring to the table.

                          And while the younger generation may possess better computer or technical skills than us, if you’re willing to learn, there are a ton of free or nearly free resources available to you.

                          Deciding on a career change at 50 is a great way to experience life on your own terms.

                          More Tips for Career Change

                          Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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