The iPad 2 represents a remarkable transition for tablets from media consumption devices to productivity tools. Yes, reading the Wall Street Journal on your iPad is still an awesome use of your tablet. However, now you can use your tablet to make your business run smoother, manage your time effectively and increase your productivity. Here are 5 essential Apps for Small Business.
This App is a lighter version of its desktop counterpart but it still manages to give you everything you need to create a presentation from scratch, should you need to. However, the attraction is using the iPad to present your presentation to your audience, whether that is on the floor of a trade show, in an office or even over lunch. This app designed especially for the iPad by Apple is a perfect hand-held way to get your message across. With animations, pictures and graphs.
The great thing is that the editing capability is designed to be extremely easy and intuitive. If you need to make changes or customize your presentation on the train, bus or in a lobby waiting area, that is extremely easy here. You can move slides, re-arrange them, skip them or change text, all from the iPad with the greatest of ease. You can even insert movies, music and videos into your presentation if you’d like.
This database app is a great little management tool even for novices. It is a much easier and more intuitive application than something big and daunting like FileMaker but it allows for the customization of fields that is necessary to keep track of projects, expenses and materials.
With your contact list already imported into Bento, you can associate projects with specific people, set reminders for yourself and track tasks so simply it actually makes work seem fun. With the ability to import pictures and take notes, this will become one of your go-to applications at the start of your day.
This app is quite simply “awesome.” In fact, it seems that this is exactly what the iPad was designed for – up-to-the-minute analytics of business data so you can make educated snap decisions with accurate information. The Roambi App is like Microsoft Excel on steroids. Or, put another way, it’s like a stock ticker that tells you exactly what your business is doing at any given moment as far as sales, expenses and profits. You can get snapshot glimpses of trends as they are actually happening – all in real time.
Roambi can give you a high-level snapshot of your business metrics or, if you prefer, it will allow you to zero in on the nitty-gritty. It has amazingly sophisticated navigation and display for the best data presentation possibilities out there. This is simply a “must-have” for all businesspeople.
The great thing about TimeMaster for the iPad is that it works nicely in conjunction with Bento – while Bento is for you and your staff to manage projects, TimeMaster helps you communicate with clients and generate invoices.
The benefit to keeping the systems separate should be obvious – the last thing you would want is all your internals getting out to the client. That’s what Bento is for. Timemaster allows you to actually track your time for specific clients on specific projects as if you are clocking in and out. This helps you manage your productivity so much more effectively and helps you prevent going over your client’s allotted hours or budget.
At the end, the App will generate an invoice for you with all of the relevant, specific information your clients will need. For tax purposes, this app keeps track of everything for you – all your time worked is there and able to integrate with your accounting. This app is amazing and efficient.
The benefit of this app is clear – it turns your iPad into a working cash register. That’s right, with the dongle attachment, you can scan credit cards and accept payments using your iPad or iPhone. Once you purchase the app, you get in contact with the company and they will ship you the dongle and you’ll be up and running.
One of the other applications for Square is the ability to quickly and easily transfer funds into your account or the account of another. If, for example, you are out to lunch with a group and need to split a check, it is quite easy to do with this app – unlike some of the other services, no one has to have an account with Square in order to pay you through it. Simply transfer the correct funds instantly.