Executives Use Apps to Work Smart

No matter how hard you try, you really cannot create more time in your schedule. What you can do, however, as an in-demand executive, is control how finite and effective you are with the time you have. Fortunately, among the estimated 1.5 million apps they have available for iOS or Android, many developers have taken the time to design mobile apps exclusively for business professionals and busy executives.

Using the Applause APPS for Business Executives Index, my colleagues and I selected five apps that executives should evaluate. Each app received a high and favorable rating among C-level and corporate leadership respondents, and these apps represented some of the most efficient ones in terms of productivity available for mobile use.

As corporate leaders and executives become increasingly mobile, concerns regarding browsing and data safety are at the forefront. Do you know how to tell if the wi-fi network you are accessing is actually safe? Can you collaborate and share files with your team safely, or communicate seamlessly through a messenger app? We chose five essential mobile apps that executives shouldn’t be without.

1. Duolingo.

For many executives, business takes them into international territories, and having the ability to speak in more than one language (even at a basic functional level) is helpful. The Duolingo website and app received an 88.5 percent mobile sentiment approval rating for executives in a survey conducted by Applause, in 2016.

The software takes the hardship out of learning a second or third language, with a gamified interface that makes it easier for people with busy schedules to learn. Executives can break up linguistic sessions into five, 10- or 20-minute daily sessions, and click along to learn written, vocal and audio cues to help them rapidly learn the language of their choosing, anywhere and anytime.

Try Duolingo on mobile.

2. WhatsApp.

If you are not using WhatsApp, chances are that you have been introduced to it by a colleague, or business associate. In August of 2014, the messaging mobile application had 600 million active users. In January of 2015, WhatsApp grew to more than 700 million monthly active users, with approximately 30 billion instant messages sent between professionals every day.

Why the popularity? When you travel internationally, text messages and roaming charges can become costly. Getting into Facebook Messenger only recently became easy, with a separate advertisement free app that didn’t require logging into the social network. It was cumbersome, and in the game of real time messaging and VOIP calling, Facebook seemed to lose the race to the small, user friendly WhatsApp.

Try WhatsApp on mobile.

3. Slack.

Looking for something that functions similar to WhatsApp, but includes private chat spaces, drag and drop file functionality? Something that also has the ability to organize different departments into unique communication channels? Welcome to Slack, the most inaptly named productivity app on the planet.

In July of 2016, there were 930,000 daily active users (DAU) with paid accounts on the Slack network, and three million registered users worldwide. Approximately 77 percent of Fortune 500 companies use the program for data sharing and mobile collaboration, according to data provided by DMR Stats and Gadgets.

Users refer to themselves as “Slackers,” and that is part of the popularity and unique culture of the app, which carries the slogan “Be less busy.” The app was repurposed from a failed game design, and received a 64.5 percent approval rating on the 2016 Applause Mobile Sentiment Analysis.