Productivity is an essential trait that can drastically impact the landscape of business for the better. The more qualitative work we can put out within a reasonable time frame, the more opportunity there is for new projects. New projects bring advancements, growth, and so much more. Here are five ways the digital world advancements improve productivity.

“Improved productivity means less human sweat, not more” – Henry Ford

Productivity is a trait that lies within human beings that can be developed over time. When we think about productivity, it’s reasonable to assume a majority of us think about the people doing the work rather than the means being utilized to complete the work. While it is ultimately up to us to productively complete tasks, the way we do so does contribute highly.

How work in a digital world is molding productivity.

Working in a digital sphere is grounds for distractions. Everything and anything can be found at the click of the button. Often, people find themselves going down funnels. What initially is meant to be a quick scan of Twitter to see relevant conversations turns into a deep dive into influencer drama. It’s human nature to explore beyond the scope which we are given — ergo, a majority of us have found ourselves in this boat.

Often, a lack of productivity stems from a lack of sufficient and usable resources that can simplify the task at hand. While we may credit it to the endless surplus of quizzes Buzzfeed has to offer, low levels of productivity can be attributed to the redundancy in which we complete tasks.

For example, you may have a task that needs to be given to a team member; it may be quite simplistic in the eyes of said member. However, the delivery of the job may over-complicate the matter. Trying to deliver your product can lead to back-and-forth emails and although the task may be understood and eventually completed. The steady workflow was thus interrupted by a wave of unintentional miscommunications. And on it goes.

A steady workflow is essential when it comes to overall productivity.

The easier it is to delegate and consume the premise of tasks, the quicker the turnaround time. Time, however, isn’t the only factor that benefits from a steady flow.

When individuals can fully understand the task at hand, the more precise and qualitative the end result is. A more detailed and informative explanation — without a doubt — leads to a higher quality of work.

Project management tools integrated within productivity software can be implemented to help better the process of relaying information. The flow of knowledge and intelligence from one end to another improves the overall flow of work.

How can digital software and tools better improve overall productivity?

There is no doubt that the world is moving a tan, incredibly fast place. Demands are higher, though more work needs to be done to adhere to these demands. Over time, many companies, including CloudApp, have – and continue to – work to simplify the delegation of tasks to improve the overall workflow within businesses.

While we cannot control the individual productivity level of every person we encounter, we can help increase efficiency. Digital tools are the vehicle aimed at doing just that. Back to the initial question – just how can these digital means improve productivity?

Speedup without stumbling.

Having to explain something over and over to someone to no avail can be frustrating. The person on the receiving end isn’t to blame most of the time. However, it comes down to how we are delivering the message to them.

Have you ever known EXACTLY how to do something but had trouble putting it in words? Don’t worry; you aren’t alone. A majority of us have experienced this problem at some point. Although email is still an indispensable and useful means of communication between parties, it has its pitfalls.

A picture is worth a thousand words. In this case, a video is worth a million words. Video recording software makes it easy to thoroughly explain a process with visual entities attached.

How does this work?

Webcam recording software – some things are better-said face-to-face (or in this case, screen to screen). When the endless string of emails piles up, the frustration goes way up. Webcam recording allows users to record themselves, which can be utilized for explaining concepts. Further, new tasks can easily be explained, providing new and vital information. Fast and easy answers to frequently asked questions to become a snap.

These options can be pre-recorded and sent at the click of a button through a simple link. The pre-recording eliminates download time. Individuals on the receiving end can benefit from the personable and thorough visual explanation given to them in a short period.

Screen recording software similar to webcam recording, this means of relaying information can easily eliminate the back and forth. Some things are better explained through visuals. According to TeachThought, the switch to visual learning is more and more prevalent in today’s culture, and adaptation to this is essential for expanding the skills of our current and future generations.

The switch is also evident throughout social media – with visual content dominating. Screen recording allows you to explain tasks, projects, etc., visually. Recordings also allow for receiving users to refer back, pause, and rewind when necessary.

Code Review Tools whether you are an experienced developer or new to the world of code, you know that one small variable can throw the balance off everything. Trying to figure out just which variable in which line of code is causing an error can be time-consuming and tricky.

Code review through screens, GIFs, or annotated screenshots can vastly improve the QA process. These code review can catch errors that may have been missed. Not only can this enhance the steadiness of workflow, but it eliminates severe issues or crashes caused by buggy or misplaced code.

These means of communication work to eliminate the time spent explaining a process or task. The value-add here is productivity so more time can be spent working on prescribed tasks.

Turning impersonal communication personal.

Working digitally, especially those who work remote, understand the difficulty in making meaningful connections through a screen. Most of us have good intentions and want to help people further, yet the inability to authenticate your thoughts can run sour if interpreted differently.

Video and recording go beyond being a functional means of improving workflow. Recordings also work as a communication software, aiding in the progression of personable interactions.

How does this process help with productivity? Building and establishing connection stakes time, primarily via digital outlets. Imagine exchanging emails back-and-forth with someone you may not know or perhaps a remote worker you recently hired.

Although you believe the intentions are good, it takes a significant amount of time to remove that “weary” barrier. A more personable means of delivering your message to another person can speed up the quantitative and qualitative process. A personable connection moves to the next steps, along at a precise and faster pace.

Goodbye hour-long meetings.

Incorporating video and visuals into your workflow can immediately remove the need for long meetings. Rather than scheduling a 30-60 min meeting — record a video explaining your side of a situation. With this process, you provide information that leads to finely-tuned collaboration. A video can also determine if a meeting is even needed at all.

I HATE writing long emails. I would much rather send a quick note in Slack or record a video explaining it visually to someone.

Capture what’s relevant, hold the fluff.

Fluff – if you are a writer or work within the marketing world, you know exactly what fluff is. If you are unfamiliar, fluff is essentially filler content used to make something sound more complicated or perhaps more impressive than it is.

A lot of people use “fluff” to further impose their knowledge on a topic at hand. While it’s great to have a dictionary of knowledge at your disposal, it may be doing more harm than good. There is merit behind the phrase; less is more.

Don’t overcomplicate ideas.

Overcomplicating ideas, concepts, and instructions can cause confusion and the need for reiteration. With a concise and straightforward video, you can show exactly what NEEDS to be shown and cut out all the extra embellishments that aren’t necessary to the task at hand.

For example, if you are giving your team a step-by-step tutorial on how to publish a blog post, there is no need for lengthy explanations that are grounds for confusion. A simple video capturing only the relative steps they need to follow may be less. Still, the value is substantial; you’d be shocked at how making something simpler can lead to an increase in productivity and quality.

Breakthrough language barriers.

Another premise of working in a digital world is the ability to make connections across the globe with people of different backgrounds. A diverse set of global characteristics is a beautiful experience and an excellent opportunity to learn from those with different stories.

However, this can also prove challenging. While translation tools exist that can help us interpret what those who speak different languages are trying to communicate, they aren’t always 100% accurate, and the constant copy-and-pasting can be tedious.

Visual representations via video capture and a screen recorder can help break down that barrier. It’s no wonder why visual learning is thriving in the modern-day century!

Some proponents of the digital-verse can impose ramifications on our productivity. However, many others are focused on the exact opposite. Sometimes, the best way to improve productivity is merely finding a faster, yet, natural means of completing what will be accomplished.

Joe Martin

Joe Martin

VP of Marketing

Joe Martin is currently the GM and VP of Marketing at CloudApp, a visual collaboration tool. He has more than 13 years of experience of marketing in the tech industry. Prior to his role at CloudApp, Martin was the Head of Social Analytics at Adobe where he led paid social strategy and a research team providing strategic guidance to organizations within the company. He has an M.B.A. from the University of Utah’s David Eccles School of Business, Executive education in Entrepreneurship from Stanford Graduate School of Business, a B.S. in Finance from the University of Utah and a digital marketing certificate from The Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. His work has been published in the Associated Press, Wall Street Journal, NY Times, and other top tier outlets.