Productivity at Work: How to Measure It

January 4, 2023


A group of coworkers are sitting and standing around a table, working together. Image demonstrates the importance of measuring productivity.
Learning how to measure productivity can help you stay organized and feel more efficient.

In the most general sense, productivity measures output per unit over input. So, if you can write ten emails in the span of an hour, that measures your productivity at work. 

But in a corporate setting, it’s hardly ever so black and white. Data entry is a perfect example of how nuanced productivity truly is. The number of spreadsheets you fill out per hour doesn’t account for the work you’re doing outside of this task.

At the end of the workday, are you scoring your performance based on how many tasks you successfully completed on your to-do list? If this is the case, you’re overlooking the other hard work you put in outside your checklist. Plus, you might actually be setting yourself up for harmful burnout

But what other way is there to measure productivity, if not quantitatively? Let’s take a look.

Productivity Apps Can Help You Track Time and Effort Spent

One answer to measuring productivity is with productivity apps. There are a ton of apps that can help you track what you’ve completed. Not only this, but they help you visualize what the rest of your day is going to look like, too. Having an idea of what you need to get done helps you plan more efficiently. Plus, you’ll feel more accomplished when things get crossed off your list. 

Productivity apps to choose from include:

  • Todoist
  • Hive
  • Trello
  • If This Then That
  • And more 

These apps give you a visual sense of what items need to be completed on a day-to-day basis. On top of that, you can set reminders for due dates, assign priority to the most important tasks, and collaborate with colleagues. This way, nobody falls behind. 

Plan Ahead for Success With a Productivity Planner

There’s a reason that a planner seems to be a tried-and-true tool for project and task management. 

A good, old-fashioned paper planner is a great option. It’s perfectly portable, and writing things down by hand often helps to improve your memory.

However, just like with task apps, having a digital planner can be a game-changer, too. You can assign priority, deadlines, or delegate tasks to colleagues all in one platform like Asana. You can even organize your tasks with colored tags to keep track of various departments and their responsibilities.

On top of digital planning, there are many tools that allow you to automate your processes, too. Some project management software can notify a coworker or manager the second you check something off of your to-do list. Then, they can move a task along to the next stage without unnecessary communication. 

What Productivity Tools are Available to You?

Productivity tools can be anything that helps you feel and be more productive. 

Perhaps it’s a reminder to take a lap around your office floor. This can help to reset your brain every few hours so you don’t lose focus. 

Maybe it’s a to-do list with color-coordinate markers. 

Maybe it’s software like Calendly, an app that automatically shares your availability for appointments. This way, others can easily schedule time with you. 

Or maybe it’s something to help block distractions. Did you know there are apps like Freedom? This app blocks websites, notifications, and alerts so you don’t lose focus when you’re in the zone.

Even setting your phone to Do Not Disturb for an hour can boost productivity! 

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