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Productivity Tools – We all spend time avoiding doing what we should do. If you work in Digital then the odds are you spend a lot of the time on the computer. In this case an online tool is a great way of seeing how you are spending your working day. I came across this tool Rescuetime which monitors how you spend your time and categorizes tasks in to unproductive, productive, very productive. For example if you were using an Instant Messaging platform such as Adium (which I use on my Mac) this will be classed as Unproductive as will social networking sites such as Facebook. What I found great about this tool is if there was a website that the program didn’t recognize it gives you the option to select a category for it. If you’re anything like me you will tend to visit similar websites such as Industry Forums which can sometimes be classified as Social Networking which although distracting could be used for work purposes!

So as this is my blog and not just a product push for a great App I thought I would have a go at realizing my working week and making adjustments to become more productive. The only problem I have is if you’re analyzing a normal working day then this tool can point out what websites and apps are distracting you and help you adjust for the next day. The snapshot below was taken the day before I went to the social media forum so as you can imagine I was networking on twitter to see who was going and hopefully meet up with people. Unfortunately this is classed as as distracting time!

Fast forward a few days to Thursday when conference fever was over and I’d replied to the new people I met at the event. The Dashboard below shows me a wealth of data which working in Online Marketing is what you need to make sense of your situation and take action to improve it. As I have so transparently opened myself for many get back to work comments a lot of my time is being taken up on either communication on Instant Messenger (not that productive) and Design for a Project I’m working on (more productive!). The social networking I need to cut down on with out being rude to my friends, colleagues and loved ones, so I log out of Facebook on Adium and ensure I keep a tab of the amount of hours each day I’m on Social Networking Sites.

Overall Rescuetime has some fantastic features that aren’t ironically enough a waste of time. Where I’ve been busy, productive or distracted I would of liked to spend more time trying them out before my free trial ends. I may just consider an upgrade to the full version as all the increased productivity may just make me a few more pennies!

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