Procurement · 12 October 2016

Dropbox productivity features aim to benefit entrepreneurs

dropbox
Dropbox has taken a further step into the productivity app space

Cloud storage platform Dropbox has announced a range of new productivity tools that could benefit busy entrepreneurs, small business owners and the self-employed.

Available via the platform’s iOS app, five new features will seek to “match the efficiency of working at your desk”, according to one Dropbox spokesperson.

Arguably the most important new tool for small business owners is the ability to sign PDF documents directly via the Dropbox app, intended to “get back the time it used to take to print, sign, scan, email or fax urgent documents”.

Collaboration is central to the new features. Users can now share documents and files with the iMessage app, and a notification will also be sent when a co-worker saves a new version of a file being viewed, with a function to review the changes.

A widget has been developed, enabling users to create and view files without unlocking their phone.

The updates represent a major step from Dropbox to dominate the productivity app market, that has become central to the success of modern enterprise. Entrepreneurs in the UK will likely be some of the first to make full use of the features.

According to a recent study from accounting software company Intuit QuickBooks, the UK’s small business owners are leading those in other countries in harnessing the power of apps for the day-to-day running of their business.

Some 71 per cent of the country’s entrepreneurs were found to rely on mobile or web-based applications for daily operations of their companies, compared to 59 per cent of those in the US.

Commenting on the study, Dominic Allon, Europe vice president and managing director of Intuit QuickBooks, acknowledged that “British entrepreneurs are putting technology at the heart of their business”.

Pointing to the potential of apps in driving growth, Allon said: “Small firms are well known for their creativity in how they grow their business; using digital tools to tackle their challenges head-on is key to their success.”

The latest Dropbox updates are currently only available through the platform’s iOS app for iPhone and iPad.

Last month Google rebranded its Apps for Work productivity offering as G Suite. The updates saw optimisation of the Calendar function, along with new collaborative features such as Quick Access that represent a further step into the enterprise market for Google.

Find out which eight health and wellbeing apps could support your workforce.

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ABOUT THE EXPERT

Praseeda Nair is the editorial director of Business Advice, and its sister publication for growing businesses, Real Business. She's an impassioned advocate for women in leadership, and likes to profile business owners, advisors and experts in the field of entrepreneurship and management.

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