Up to Speed – Vital Software for the Home Office
Although the specific software you’ll need for your home office will vary depending on the type of business you’re conducting, some software packages are used in most offices in almost every industry. Below is some of the most commonly used software by people who work from home.
By far one of the most used software packages worldwide is Microsoft Office, and even if you don’t make use of the programs themselves, you’ll still need to be able to open the documents created by various Microsoft programs. Thanks to Office’s Cloud-feature, users can now also work on their documents from anywhere, whether at work, at a client’s place of business or at the home office.
Most people use Microsoft Word as a text editor, which is why web-based applications will often import Word’s formatting to make things easier for users. With features such as a spell checker and dictionary, you can quickly (and easily) type out a document without having to worry about missing spelling mistakes and coming across as unprofessional. As Word includes some Clip Art and several templates, it is also great for basic designs, from flyers to posters to letterheads and invoices.
Microsoft Excel is designed to display data in a spreadsheet or convert it to graphs. This is great for people who work on projects or want to monitor certain trends in their business. It also works just fine as a basic accounting program where you can calculate and keep records of your monthly income and expenses, taking some of the hassle out of life at the end of the financial year when it is time to make sense of all those business numbers. If you need to design more complicated tables, Excel is often a better program to use than Word.
Microsoft PowerPoint is a valuable tool to have if you need to prepare presentations to convince prospective clients of the value of the product or service you are offering. Not only is it a question of putting a presentation together, you can then deliver a handy document for them to refer to later if they need to.
Outlook functions as a digital personal organizer, allowing you to organize your emails, contacts and daily events. It features a calendar which helps users to schedule appointments and can receive emails from your different email accounts. Through social connectors, users can also get automatic updates in Outlook from social networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn and more.
Skype is also a Microsoft product, but is available for free as an online download. This is a vital piece of software to have if you regularly need to meet with colleagues or clients that are not close by. Because of the video streaming feature of Skype, clients will be able to see you during a meeting. Most of the Microsoft programs offer Skype integration, allowing you to quickly share documents during a meeting through Skype.
All of this is valuable software in the office. Make the use of it and you can really be on your way to running a smooth business from home.