Interconnected Efforts Are In, Siloed Efforts Are Out: Improve Overall Productivity in 2021 With These Tech Tools

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As we navigate 2021 and remote work becomes our new normal, it’s crucial that our managers and team members maintain flexibility and a strong commitment to meeting goals. Whether you are pushing your virtual sales teams to continue prospecting or leading a busy call center, productivity tools are available to help your teams reach (and exceed) their targets in this work environment.

But productivity efforts no longer have to be siloed in each department. We live in a world that is more interconnected than ever. Now, formerly disparate teams’ productivity efforts can work together to create a more cohesive, efficient, and productive business strategy overall.

Whether you’re an HR leader, data manager, or call center agent, productivity is essential for revenue growth, increased engagement, and improved customer service. Here are some tools that can help us work smarter — not harder — in 2021:

Task Management Tools

In a remote environment, it can be all too easy for tasks to slip through the cracks. Task management tools like Asana,, and Trello can help prevent that from happening.

These and other task management platforms can help boost productivity by giving you the ability to organize tasks, create deadlines, provide real-time updates, and assign task ownership. Task management tools create transparency into tasks and projects, allowing colleagues — on your team and across departments — to stay on top of workloads and collaborate with other team members.

Wellness Support

In the quest to maximize productivity, it is important for HR teams and managers to recognize the difference between productivity and overworking. According to Spring Health, 76 percent of employed Americans report experiencing burnout during the pandemic. If you’re not careful, your productivity-boosting efforts might add fuel to this ongoing burnout crisis.

There’s a fine line between maximum productivity and overwork, especially in this unprecedentedly challenging time. Many remote employees are juggling work, children, and family responsibilities throughout the day, putting them at increased risk of burnout. HR teams and managers need to ensure they’re supporting employee wellness as much as they’re supporting employee productivity.

Luckily, one of the best ways to improve productivity is to accommodate employee needs. When employees feel good physically and psychologically, they’re more able to focus on work — and productivity goes up.

Try implementing meeting-free time blocks, such as “No Meeting Thursdays,” so employees have distraction-free periods to get some good work done. Flexibility of hours is another way to give team members the time and space they need to accomplish their tasks on a schedule that best suits them. You may also decide to invest in wellness apps to help employees take their mental and physical health into their own hands.

Taken together, these wellness initiatives ensure your employees can get into a positive headspace that lends itself to accomplishing tasks efficiently.

Check out the latest issue of Magazine for more career advice and recruiting trends:

Recruiting and Training Tools

Recruiting and training may look a little different than they used to, but that doesn’t mean our recruiting and training efforts need to be any less productive. In fact, the shift to a digital environment may afford us the opportunity to create even more effective hiring and training processes, provided we utilize the right tools.

For example, recruiters can take advantage of tools like Crystal and Clearbit, which leverage data to provide valuable insights and communication assistance, thereby streamlining the recruiting process. For training, learning management systems like Moodle and TalentLMS can help you get more organized by housing entire programs and tracking employee progress. You can also look into more industry-specific options: For example, when training call center agents, you can leverage call recording tools that allow new employees to learn the ropes by listening directly to how their colleagues handle common questions.

Communication Tools

With internal and external company communications taking place primarily through computers and smartphones these days, bulk text messaging, omnichannel automation, and smart routing can greatly improve productivity, efficiency, and quality of communication.

Effective communication is especially important for call center agents, customer support representatives, and other employees whose jobs revolve around engaging with customers and clients. To ensure productivity is maximized and communication is optimized, try out a unified cloud-based communications solution. Having one platform to manage all communications allows employees to spend more time on productive work and less time on manual, mundane tasks that automation can handle instead.

A successful workplace is a unified ecosystem in which everyone — regardless of role — works together to achieve success. Employees are no longer are separated by our departments or responsibilities, and it’s time we had productivity tools that reflect that fact.

Although we don’t currently have the luxury of completing our work tasks with our team members surrounding us, we do have the opportunity to take advantage of technology that makes it easier to get work done. With the right technology in place, teams can effectively collaborate — internally and across departments — despite the remote environment.

Laure Fisher is cofounder and COO of CallTrackingMetrics.

By Laure Fisher