High productivity is essential for any business. Time not spent being productive is time wasted, and time wasted is revenue and profits down the drain. No company, regardless of whether it is a one or two-person outfit or a massive conglomerate with thousands of employees, can afford to waste time and money by not being productive.
Productivity is so important that software companies charge vast sums for the latest applications. Those programs span several key business areas, including office productivity, image and video editing, and task management. But nobody likes spending significant money on programs and software when their business could put those funds to better use elsewhere. That is why we have created this article detailing the best free-to-use office, editing, and task management software for your business.
The Best Free-to-Use Office Suites
While we must admit that Microsoft Office is the best office productivity program available today, the top-tier product will set you back in the region of $400. That in itself is costly, but imagine you need Microsoft Office on 10 or 20 computers. You are suddenly on the hook for thousands of dollars. The best free office programs are as capable as big daddy Microsoft. They allow you to use word processors, build databases, construct spreadsheets and an odds calculator, and much more without charging you a single cent for the privilege.
LibreOffice has long been the choice for people looking for alternatives to Microsoft Office. The open-source office suite includes applications for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, and graphics editing and does so for free. Making a donation of any size you choose to help support the developers is possible, but such a donation is not required.
Our only gripe with LibreOffice is it is less aesthetically pleasing than the costly Microsoft Office, but if you can get over how it looks, you have a powerful, free-to-use office suite.
Google Workspace, formerly G Suite, is another excellent free alternative worth consideration. The Google Workspace products are cloud-based, meaning you can access your documents from any computer or compatible smartphone worldwide by logging into your Google account. Perhaps the best feature of Google Workspace is it allows real-time collaboration, making it perfect for those working from home or who have clients and offices dotted around the world.
The Best Free-to-Use Task Management Applications and Programs
Project and task management is an integral part of any business but an area many overlook. It is easy to keep track of matters when you only have a couple of tasks, but it is easy to miss crucial things if you or your company are working on a large-scale, multi-faceted project. This is where task management software comes into its own.
Microsoft To Do is a basic task management application available across various devices, including Windows, Android, and iOS. The software allows you to create multiple lists, set deadlines and reminders, and share tasks with other To Do users. Although To Do is a simplified product, it is perfect for smaller operations wanting to plan and keep track of projects.
Asana is a much more complex project management tool that requires a subscription if used by many people within the same team, but it also comes with a free version for individuals and small groups. Lists are at Asana’s heart, but those lists can be combined into several categories and assigned to team members. Real-time collaboration is an excellent Asana feature.
In addition to lists, Asana can display tasks on a calendar, allowing you to plan more effectively. You can also attach files, create a workflow, and send messages to the teams you create.
The Best Free-to-Use Image and Video Editing Programs
Everyone in business knows the importance of having vibrant, crystal-clear images and videos on their websites, but they are also aware that products like Adobe Photoshop can be expensive. If you require photo and video editing software but want to avoid being tied to a costly monthly or annual subscription, you should check out these free-to-use products.
GNU Image Manipulation Program, or GIMP for short, is a free, open-source application capable of image manipulation, free-form drawing, image editing, and more. GIMP was launched in June 1998, so it is not a new program that will disappear soon. It is used by millions of people globally and promises always to be 100% free. Like many free programs, GIMP lacks the polish of some paid-for products, which is easy to overlook when saving money each month.
If you are a fan of Photoshop or are used to its features and how it works, consider downloading Photopea for free. Although browser-based, Photopea stores all files locally and does not upload any data to a server. Furthermore, it allows users to open raster and vector graphics, including Photoshop’s PSD, making it a superb alternative.
Those who require video editing programs will know the costs can run into hundreds of dollars, but not if you use DaVinci Resolve. Developed by Blackmagic Design, DaVinci Resolve is the company’s free-to-use product that more than two million people use globally. While the free version lacks some of the features of the paid-for edition, DaVinci Resolve is more than capable of fulfilling most people’s video editing needs.
In the current financial climate, where businesses and individuals account for every cent, saving on monthly and annual subscriptions is a Godsend. Productivity and editing software is notoriously expensive, and rightly so because it saves the end user time, and that time ultimately translates to increased revenue and profits.
Thanks to open-source software and developers offering free-to-use versions of their products, you are no longer required to spend significant money on office suites, editing software, or time-saving task management products, and you can enjoy these things without breaking the law by downloading “cracked” versions.