The types of workers who should use smartphones (Hint: it’s all of them)

iphone-6-458159_640

The work phone is no longer exclusively for the executive, and it hasn’t been since 2007 with the birth of the first iPhone. This piece of technology changed business (and most notably small business) forever.

Fast forward to 2015. We now have the iPhone 6, a smartphone that makes the original look like an old Nokia. But all the bells and whistles aside, the one thing that makes the smartphone more impactful on small business than anything else is its access. It doesn’t matter if they’re a billionaire or lower class, almost anyone can own the world’s best cellphones. This means small businesses have an even playing field with major corporations when it comes to mobile technology.

So who should carry smartphones for work? The answer is everyone. The only aspect that will change is how they use them.

The Outdoor Labourer

Remember Nextel? Before it was acquired by Sprint, the cellphone manufacturer made two-way capable phones that acted like walkie-talkies over a mobile network to save on precious minutes (before they were unlimited). While the brand didn’t last, the phones were popular among blue-collar workers.

Now, the Voxer app has taken over this functionality. It’s a free two-way radio app for iPhone and Android that lets users send unlimited messages back and forth, just like a walkie-talkie. As more blue-collar workers carry cellphones, this has become a useful app while they’re on the job.

The Desk Jockey

The smartphone was seemingly invented for the desk jockey. It has everything he or she could ever need — web, email, calendar, task manager and much, much more. But where the smartphone is really shining for the master of the cubicle is in time management apps. When working a 9 to 5 job, every minute matters to have the most productive day possible. Hours is an elegant, simple-to-use iPhone app that tracks every minute of the day so workers can accomplish as much as possible in an eight-hour window.

The Personal Assistant

When it comes to managing someone else’s life, the native calendar app that comes with iPhone and Android just won’t do. Personal assistants need to organize everything about their boss’ life — where to go, when to be there, who to meet with, what to talk about and so on. The native calendar app for iPhone has come a long way since 2007, but there are better third-party options available.

Sunrise Calendar is consistently praised as the best option for the iPhone. It has all the bells and whistles of the native app as well as a beautiful UI and integration with popular services, such as Dropbox and Evernote. And when Microsoft acquired Sunrise in early 2015, it was just another sign that the app will get even more support and features in the future.

In addition to a sophisticated calendar, Wunderlist is another app that outdoes the native task manager (which is really nothing more than a basic list and reminders app). Wunderlist’s handiest feature is the ability to add reminders using basic language. Type “Boss meets with David tomorrow for lunch at Johnny’s Restaurant,” and the app adds the event, time and location, using only the info from that single phrase. While the personal assistant uses dozens of apps to manage the boss’ time, none get more use than the two listed above.

From Cheerios to Charlie’s Angels – iPhone App Mum’s First Photo Shoot

Ever wondered what it would be like to take part in a photo shoot for a glossy magazine? Victoria Moore, who launched the iPhone app Legacy Organiser, tells us all about it!

“A photo shoot” – the phrase conjures up a misty world of glamour and celebrity that is a million miles away from the usual daily routine of chiselling encrusted Cheerios off the kitchen floor, choosing which Frube to put in a pack lunch or negotiating UN style with a five year old about why you should keep your school uniform on. Continue reading “From Cheerios to Charlie’s Angels – iPhone App Mum’s First Photo Shoot”

Launching an iPhone App: How two mums launched Legacy Organiser

Today’s guest post comes from Victoria Moore who, together with her business partner Mo, launched the iPhone app Legacy Organiser (despite neither of them having a background in IT or even owning iPhones!)

You may recall that the last series of the BBC’s Apprentice featured the launch of an app. At the time I couldn’t believe it as earlier the same day the programme went out, my friend and I had launched our own iPhone app.  It was such a coincidence and hopefully a good sign for the success of our project.

Mo and I met as neighbours in the Scottish Highlands.  We both had previously been involved in start-ups and business, and last year we started talking about new ideas and ventures.  It was around the same time that I had my will drawn up.  Like many people,  I had never got round to doing this but after having children I felt a huge responsibility of making sure they would be looked after if anything were to happen to myself and my husband.  There are many moments in life when you suddenly recognise your own mortality and for me having children was definitely one of those.

Although my will dealt with legal and financial matters, I realised that there was no way of leaving details of how I would like to be remembered or my life celebrated.  Many evenings and glasses of wine later, Mo and I came up with the idea that a mobile app would be a perfect way of storing this information and thus “Legacy Organiser” was born.

However, neither of us had any kind of background in IT or new media nor did we own an iPhone between us.   The whole project has been a massive learning curve.  There is a huge amount of information on the internet about start up apps, but given our lack of experience and knowledge it was very difficult to work out what was relevant or helpful.

We met with a few app developers and had a particularly surreal meeting with one agency where we felt we were old enough to be their mothers.  They swaggered in wearing skinny jeans looking like Franz Ferdinand and appeared pretty startled when they spotted us sitting there sipping our lattes in our pastel coloured cardigans.  I think there is a presumption that people engaging in new business within the mobile app community are young, achingly trendy and technology natives.  We don’t quite fit the bill in any of these categories.

Having said that, and after months of research, we came up with a brief for our developers for the design and the functionality for the app and we spent several months working with them to get it right.  We submitted the app to Apple and having had it approved we are now beginning the process of soft launching the app.  It has been a fantastic, exasperating at times and fascinating journey so far.  We are trying to raise awareness of the app through traditional and social media.  We were delighted to be featured recently as a Virgin Entrepreneur http://www.virgin.com/entrepreneur/blog/app-innovator-on-acting-upon-inspiration

My advice to anyone thinking of doing the same is don’t let a lack of IT experience put you off – look at me….I did it!

To download the app and being creating your own legacy click here:

http://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/legacy-organiser/id428518774?mt=8

For any further information contact Victoria Moore at victoria@legacyorganiser.com

or at LinkedIn  http://uk.linkedin.com/pub/victoria-moore/34/a08/512

If you enjoyed this post, why not join my mailing list? You’ll get weekly tips to help you thrive as a self-employed parent, as well as my a free e-book,”Running a business around a family: 9 Steps to success”.