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Improving Worker Productivity Through Ifttt

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Here at AccelaWork, we’re always looking for new ways to increase productivity. Well, our founder and CEO has discovered a new product that does just that!

Robby Slaughter, principal of AccelaWork, expressed his thoughts on the “If This Then That” (Ifttt) service geared toward automating routine online activities. In the guest post he provided to the Roundpeg blog, Slaughter details the actual meaning of the process, voices his opinion on its behalf, and provides examples of how the service can increase productivity in everyday life.

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© Flickr user Keith Williamson

In fact, to help provide readers with a better picture of the application, Slaughter provides a list of pros and cons that, as a user, he has discovered on his own:

ADVANTAGES of Ifttt:

  • It saves tons of time because it’s a form of automation.
  • It gets people thinking about automating the web.

DRAWBACKS:

  • It can’t make compound decisions.
  • It has no memory.
  • It does not play nice with others.

Automation can be great when it’s handled in the proper way. Anything that can think for us and take away mundane, mindless tasks is a major win. That said, you have to be sure the automation is actually working, or major things could fall through the cracks unnoticed.

When it comes to the drawbacks, those are common things among new apps. The compound decisions are to be expected of most apps. Ideally, we’d have machines that can think for themselves at an advanced level, but for the most part, we aren’t there yet. The memory thing is a bigger issue. Ifttt is really only useful if you want the tasks to occur instantly, as opposed to something like every Friday. Slaughter’s final point is better explained in the original post:

The system works well when reacting to real human events and triggers, but not so well when interacting with other automated services. I found that an automated service that posts links on Facebook did not awake ifttt as expected. So if you’re currently automating part of your online activities, ifttt may not play nice.

That’s important to note. When apps don’t work well across multiple platforms, or when there’s already a similar system in place, major problems can pop up. If you’re going to use ifttt or a similar service, it’s important that you make sure the app can either do everything you want it to, or if not, that it’s at least compatible with services that fill the other needs you have.

Of course, every product on the market comes with its minor quirks, but no doubt, Slaughter  believes this product is a great way to expedite routine tasks and increase productivity. To quote his opening remark in the post:

Considering that I run a productivity consulting company, it’s no surprise that I’m excited about a new service designed to automate routine online activities.

Slaughter included some ideas of ways you can use ifttt to its full potential.

So what are some examples of how to use ifttt?

How about this one: Every time you are tagged in a photo on Facebook, send that photo to your DropBox.

Here’s another cool one: Send a text to ifttt and have it respond with a phone call. Great for getting out of uncomfortable situations!

I like: Note to Self – Call Ifttt and have it transcribe your voicemail into an email.

All of these pre-built tasks are called recipes. You can make your own tasks into recipes and share them with others on ifttt with just the click of a button!

To learn more about AccelaWork’s services and how we can help increase productivity in your office, contact our consultants to learn about improving worker productivity today!

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