Working from home has loads of advantages. There’s no boss breathing down your neck, you can wake up when you want, and the schedule you keep is totally up to you. However, many of these advantages also carry a downside.
All that freedom can lead to bad work habits, constant distractions, sleeping in too late, and generally struggling to meet deadlines. Fortunately, there are plenty of great Android apps to help anyone who’s working from home.
Boosted is an excellent way to help organize your day’s, week’s, and month’s activities, and track exactly how much time you’re spending on each task. By breaking up each of your day’s responsibilities into smaller, individual tasks—and tracking how much time you spend working on each one—you can get a clearer idea of how you spend your time.
The app is equally useful when tracking work and personal activities. It lets you see how long your morning workout, lunch dishes, and responding to client emails all take you. After about a week, you can average this out, allowing you to better understand your habits and schedule your workdays for maximum efficiency.
Download: Boosted (Frees, in-app purchases available)
Asana is a great app that even a beginner can use when working at home. While its main use is to help teams to manage, track, and organize their work, it can also be useful even if you’re not a part of a team.
With Asana, you can easily break up your tasks into manageable bits, then break those bits into even smaller subtasks. Additionally, you can assign a priority to each task so it’s easy to note which are the most important and should get done first.
These tasks and subtasks can be assigned to different team members, but it’s also a useful way to manage your own work.
Download: Asana (Free, subscription available)
3. Voice Notebook
Voice Notebook makes taking notes while you’re busy much easier. The simple voice recognition app does a great job of accurately transferring your spoken words into text. It can even catch punctuation by simply saying the punctuation mark you’d like written. For example, to insert a period, simply say “period” or “dot.”
Another great aspect of this app is that it makes sending or sharing your notes easy. By tapping a button, you can download it as a text file, send it through email, upload it to Google Drive, or even text it to a colleague.
Download: Voice Notebook (Free, in-app purchases available)
5217 is a tool that works similarly to the Pomodoro technique, but with a unique twist. Studies have shown that taking breaks at regular intervals throughout your workday can help to improve productivity. According to The Muse, the most productive 10 percent of its users tend to work for 52 minutes, followed by a 17-minute break.
This general rule is what the 5217 app takes advantage of. It is set to automatically time your workday, giving you a 52-minute block in which to work, followed a 17-minute break period. As you use the app over time, you earn motivational goals and can track your progress over the weeks and months.
Download: 5217 (Free, premium version available)
Toggl is a great time tracker that’s perfect if the work you do from home is based on hourly pay. The app can handle multiple projects and clients simultaneously, so if you happen to be a busy freelancer who has to juggle the time you work across different marketplaces and clients, this app is perfect.
You can also integrate Toggl with your phone’s calendar, allowing you to save events as time entries directly from the app. You get a useful report that will show how long you’re spending on each individual task as well.
Download: Toggl (Free, subscription available)
6. Stay Focused
Stay Focused is one of the many Android apps that can help you avoid distractions. With this tool, you can block apps and websites that pull your attention away when working at home. Elements like social media, current events, and online videos can be especially problematic distractions while working remotely.
Additionally, Stay Focused tracks a bunch of other metrics that let you know exactly how much time you spend distracted by your phone. This includes the hours and minutes you’ve used it, the number of apps launched, time spent browsing the web, and your screen unlocks.
So if you find yourself scrolling through your Instagram feed on a regular basis during your workday, blocking the app and website may be a good idea.
Download: Stay Focused (Free, in-app purchases available)
7. Challenges Alarm Clock
Challenges Alarm Clock is perfect if you’re the type who has an especially difficult time waking up for work each morning. Unlike a normal alarm clock, which allows you to quickly shut it off or hit the snooze, Challenges Alarm Clock makes you work if you want to end that obnoxious buzzing noise.
The app offers a number of different challenges to shut off your alarm in the morning; you can choose from these as you like. They include:
- Math problems that range from easy to insane.
- Memory, where you have to match different shapes drawn onto cards.
- Shapes and sequences, which involves different shapes blinking in a pattern and having to repeat this pattern.
- Retype word, where you just need to retype some characters shown on the screen.
You’re also given a number of different alarm options, such as soft wake, extra loud volume, and annoying mode. This app will punish you in the mornings, and you may come to hate it, but it’s definitely effective at waking you up.
Download: Challenges Alarm Clock (Free, premium version available)
Take Your Work to the Next Level
With these apps at your disposal, you can wake up on time, get your work organized, take notes with ease, and track your work habits. You’ll even be able to seamlessly collaborate with team members, if it’s necessary for your position.
Plus, everything on this list is available for free in some capacity. Who knew your phone could help you stay productive so effectively?