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11 Apps Every Product Managers Need To Use in 2021

Being a product manager is no child’s play. The role is extremely demanding and requires you to execute multiple functions- from product planning and product marketing to establishing the product vision and working closely with engineering to ensure that the same is being realized without compromise. 

The marketplace is becoming increasingly customer-centric with every passing day. The onus has, thus, shifted onto product managers to deliver products that add significant value to the lives of its users.

The job description of a product manager is complex, for it is a hybrid of engineering, marketing, and business development. Thanks to technology, however, product managers no longer have to be overwhelmed by the scope of their responsibilities. 

The marketplace is now flooded with an assortment of incredibly reliable and efficient product management apps and software. These tools not only allow product managers to streamline their workflows but also enable them to maximize their productivity in the process. 

In this article, we present a curated compilation of 11 such tools. If you are a product manager who’s been scouring the internet to find something to optimize your team’s operations, then your search ends here. 

If you are not a product manager, then continue reading anyway. Adopting these apps into your life is sure to boost your productivity and efficiency by leaps and bounds. Before we dive deep into the features of these apps, however, let us first understand the value a product manager, or product management in general adds to a business. 

Benefits of Product Management

Listed below are a few benefits of having a product manager on board.

  1. Product Managers play a critical role in strengthening the collaboration between the various internal teams and departments of an organization. 

They are expected to form a cohesive unit by bringing together a bunch of professionals from extremely diverse grounds. Plus making sure that every individual within that unit has been assigned distinct roles and responsibilities. 

  1. The product manager acts as the bridge between the engineering team and the business development team. 

They take up the role of a universal translator to convey the critical processes from either side to one another. In the process, they ensure that the end product which is delivered rises to the expectations of the customers.

  1. A product manager creates clearly defined expectations for a process. Thereby setting in place a system wherein each process is not just informed by another but is also able to assist it.
  1. Product managers carry out extensive market research and analysis which allows organizations to deliver innovative products that are capable of solving critical problems within the market.
  1. The business intelligence and insight that a product manager brings into a company help them greatly reduce the risk of product failure.  

Now that we have discussed the benefits of product management, let us take a look at a list of the 11 best options out there.

Product managers should positively include these tools in their schedules.

Trello

Trello is, without doubt, one of the most well-recognized project management software out there. It lets you organize your projects with ease and work on them in collaboration with your colleagues. 

It is available on both the web and mobile apps. From carrying out project planning to conducting meetings and everything that falls in between the two, Trello’s suite of extensive features allows you to manage your workflows without skipping a beat. 

Why Should Product Managers Use Trello?

  • The majority of Trello features are available with its free version.
  • It provides quick and real-time updates.
  • Performing actions such as creating tasks, adding new members, and assigning tasks are fairly straightforward.

Features

  • It includes email notifications and deadline reminders. 
  • It enables you to work with lists or boards that can be organized based on different tasks and team members. 
  • It supports integration with apps such as Google Drive, Slack, Evernote, and GitHub.
  • The premium version of the app includes a host of administrative features that allow for better organization.

ProductPlan

ProductPlan is a top-tier road-mapping tool that greatly simplifies the processes of visualizing, planning, and sharing a product roadmap with your team members. Its rich suite of features that include flexible calendar templates, drag and drop elements, and visual milestone dates empower you to create a roadmap in a matter of a few minutes.

Why Should Product Managers Use ProductPlan?

  • The application’s benefit vs cost functionality allows you to prioritize your roadmaps. 
  • It enhances and fast-tracks your decision-making process. 
  • It integrates seamlessly with JIRA.

Features

  • It lets you customize your legend. 
  • It lets you add tags to any element of your choice. 

ProdPad

Prodpad is a product management software that assists product managers in developing product strategies. As a lean product roadmap tool, it allows you to keep your team members informed and aligned concerning all relevant project developments. 

Why Should Product Managers Use ProdPad?

  • The app offers a host of product management tools such as roadmaps, product backlogs, customer feedback, and the like. 
  • It provides you with a single platform wherein you can collate all the unique suggestions given by your team members.

Features

  • The drag and drop product roadmap tool lets you develop your product strategy without having to commit to any fixed set of timelines of features.
  • The Priority Chart enables you to finalize valuable product ideas that you could potentially validate and move through your workflow. 

Airfocus

Besides simplifying the process of product strategy, Airfocus empowers product managers to build high-quality products with powerful prioritization and clear roadmaps. As a modular product strategy software, it helps you build dynamic and strategic roadmaps with ease.

Why Should Product Managers Use Airfocus?

  • It offers an immensely powerful roadmap and prioritization tools.
  • It helps you transform decision-making into a collaborative and transparent process that is driven by clear prioritization.

Features

  • Airfocus’s user-friendly roadmap builder lets you fashion the roadmap of your choice within minutes. 
  • It gives you the option of consolidating multiple roadmaps into a single portfolio view. 

Monday.com

monday.com is a task management and collaboration software that is also the 2019 recipient of the prestigious Webby Award for productivity platform. It is armed with a host of easy-to-use and simple features that make collaborating between and within teams a straightforward affair. 

Why Should Product Managers Use monday.com?

  • Allows you to download pre-designed templates.
  • The mobile app allows you to check project status anytime and from anywhere.
  • Enables you to integrate all of your apps on one unified platform.

Features

  • Contains task management boards that can be used for resource planning.
  • Includes timeline views that let users be mindful of deadlines.
  • Gives you the liberty of automating workflows, data entry, and other redundant tasks.

Typeform

As an app that specializes in online form building and surveys, Typeform not only simplifies the process of carrying out surveys but also makes it much more enjoyable. 

Why Should Product Managers Use Typeform?

  • It lets you create extremely engaging and visually appealing forms and questionnaires, all within a few seconds!
  • It helps you obtain user feedback and register high completion rates.

Features

  • It is host to a vast range of templates that can be easily customized as per your needs and requirements.
  • It supports integrations with Automate.io, Mailchimp, Zapier, Slack, and Hubspot, among others. 

PowerPoint

A powerful presentation software, PowerPoint is a must-have in every product manager’s toolkit. From creating intricate pitch decks to insightful infographics, with PowerPoint in your kitty you always remain a step ahead.

Why Should Product Managers Use PowerPoint?

  • It lets you use multimedia to make your presentations more lively and engaging.
  • It helps you showcase your ideas and insights to larger audiences.

Features

  • It possesses an extensive suite of highly imaginative slide animations.
  • It contains a host of visually appealing templates for you to choose from. 

Evernote

Evernote is a note-taking app that helps you capture, archive, and arrange your ideas and observations in a hassle-free manner. Your notes could be in the form of text, audio, drawings, saved web content, and even photographs.

Why Should Product Managers Use Evernote?

  • Evernote scans images that are uploaded to it for readable text. If it is successful in finding any, it makes it searchable.
  • It provides multi-platform support. 

Features

  • It lets you access notebooks online from the desktop app.
  • It allows you to annotate PDFs.

Slack

Available in both desktop and mobile versions, Slack is a collaboration tool that helps you foster a foundation of shared understanding and teamwork across your employees. It allows the members of a team to collaborate and communicate with one another via direct messages as well as group communication. 

Why Should Product Managers Use Slack?

  • Since it is hosted in the cloud it eliminates the need for costly installations.
  • Messages, conversations, links, and files exchanged on Slack are completely searchable.

Features

  • Slack helps you find the answers you need by building a platform that not only facilitates team conversation but also fosters decision-making. 
  • It streamlines your workflow with the help of its open API that keeps teams coordinated and operating faster within the context of their communication.

API Fuse

API Fuse is an embedded integration platform that is purpose-built for SaaS applications. It enables product managers to accelerate their product roadmaps as well as gain critical insights into integration usage. 

Why Should Product Managers Use API Fuse?

  • It allows you to prioritize and build customer-facing integrations.
  • It lets you respond to your end-user integration requests without adding to your development backlog.

Features

  • API Fuse lets your customers connect their apps without deserting your product.
  • Presents your users with the scope of customizing their integrations directly in your product. 

Zoom

Probably the most used online collaboration tool amidst this pandemic, zoom is a video-conferencing software that is used extensively by offices, educational institutions, and other organizations alike.

Why Should Product Managers Use Zoom?

  • It can be used on both mobile and desktop devices.
  • Offers cross-platform compatibility.

Features

  • High definition audio and video quality. 
  • The screen share feature allows teams to present and deliberate upon various ideas.

Conclusion

When armed with the right set of product management tools and applications, a product manager will not only be able to optimize operations but also deliver products that far exceed the organization’s expectations. 

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