We live in an age where there are hundreds, if not thousands of tools that can help streamline your meeting management.
And with new tools coming available all the time, you have to wonder why anyone is still scheduling and running meetings manually.
Here’s why: With so many tools available, it can be tough to cut through the noise and find the tools that are truly worth having — the ones that are so great, you’ll wonder how you ever managed meetings without them.
That’s what we’re here for. We’ve compiled a list of the meeting management tools your organization can’t afford to go one more day without. Here’s everything you need to know about the tools that are going to completely change how you manage meetings.
What Are Meeting Management Tools (and Why Do Businesses Need Them)?
Meeting management tools can accomplish a lot of different things. Simply put, meeting management tools are tools that help individuals and teams with every task related to planning, scheduling, running, and follow-up for meetings.
That means tools that help you:
There are even specialized tools out there that can help you keep meetings focused and on track, or calculate the ROI of a meeting for your organization (how cool is that?).
The problem that meeting management software is here to solve is that meetings have a ton of moving parts. The right tools can round up all the steps it takes to pull off a successful, productive meeting and put them in one place, simplifying the entire process so businesses can improve performance, control costs, and put procedures in place that allow them to efficiently schedule and run meeting after meeting.
Why is this so important? Well, because people spend a lot of time in meetings. Some sources say employees spend up to a quarter of their total working hours in meetings, so if those meetings aren’t efficient and productive, well, just think about the cost—in lost hours, lost productivity, and in sinking morale, because no one likes to waste time at work.
And then there’s the time spent preparing for all those meetings. Studies show that business professionals spend nearly 5 hours each week just getting ready for meetings that they’ll then spend even more time attending.
Are you keeping track of the math? We’re up to 13.5 hours each week, or more than one-and-a-half entire workdays, just spent organizing and attending meetings.
That’s why so many organizations are turning to meeting management software. But with so many tools available and so many different things they can accomplish, how do you even know where to start with meeting management software? Well, not to toot our own horn, but…
AskCody Is the All-In-One Meeting Management Tool You Need
A great all-in-one tool can get you well on your way to optimizing your meeting management, and that’s where AskCody comes in.
AskCody takes all those meeting planning steps that used to be done with manual processes and point solutions and gives you a platform for booking rooms and hot desks, ordering catering and other services, managing facilities, registering and checking in guests, and more—all in one place. That means more efficiency, boosted productivity, and better control over meeting management and costs.
What’s really great is that AskCody is built to integrate with another set of tools you probably use: Office 365, Microsoft Exchange, and Outlook.
But of course we love our own software, so don’t just take our word for it. Check out the user reviews that say AskCody is the meeting management tool of tomorrow, and see why you’ll wish you had started using it yesterday.
20 Other Meeting Tools You’ll Want To Start Using ASAP
While a platform like AskCody will revolutionize your organization’s meeting management, there are even more tools to help you streamline your systems even further. Most of them have to do with the ancillary tasks that surround meetings — small organization tasks to plan when and where meetings should take place, distributing materials, and assigning and monitoring follow-up tasks.
For those, there are a number of extra tools we love, and think you’ll love too.
Tools to Use Before the Meeting
Before you even schedule a meeting, you should make sure you actually need a meeting. Catch up with everyone on the team with a chat app like Slack or Microsoft Teams. See if you can accomplish your goal without pulling everyone into a meeting.
If you decide you need a meeting, but in a less formal setting, how about hosting a digital check-in with your team? There are a ton of tools that will allow you to host online meetings, but a few that we particularly love are Google Meet, Jitsi Meet, GoToMeeting, and join.me. These are some of the most popular digital meeting platforms online because they’re fast, stable, and easy to use.
And before you head into a meeting, you have to make sure everyone involved is prepared to accomplish the goals you’ve set for the meeting. Make sure everyone has all the materials they need with Google Drive, which allows free, cloud-based file sharing. Or create and distribute agendas on the go with an app like Agenda Maker or Minute. Another great tool to help plan the most productive meeting possible is Team Meeting Checklist, which creates a timeline of tasks you need to do to prepare for the meeting and tackle during it.
Tools to Use During the Meeting
Everyone has been in a meeting that just didn’t stay on topic. It wastes a lot of time, so tools that can help you avoid that? We love ‘em.
A time tracker is a pretty under-utilized tool for managing time in meetings, but it might be just the tool you need to stay on track. We love Toggl and Team Meeting Timer for this. There’s also Less Meeting, a tool that helps you organize meetings by setting time limits for each agenda item. It’ll send you alerts when it’s time to move on so you don’t get stuck on any one task.
One of the most important things you’ll need to accomplish during the meeting is documenting what takes place, and there are several tools that can make that easier and more efficient. To create clean, organized meeting minutes that can easily be shared with other members of your team, we love MindMeister and Minutes.io.
For phone meetings that need to be recorded, TapeACall is our go-to because it allows you to dial into a meeting from your mobile phone and create a recording that can be accessed via the app as soon as you end the call.
And for the ultimate accountability for staying productive and on-task during meetings, we love to use Meeting Ticker. It’s a very simple tool that allows you to plug in how many people are attending and their hourly rate, and then it’ll show you in real-time how much a meeting is costing your company. There’s nothing that will keep you from going over time like seeing exactly how many dollars are being wasted when you do.
Tools to Use After the Meeting
After a meeting is over, you might want to take advantage of tools that help you streamline the process of sending out follow-up task assignments and keeping team members accountable for doing them. MeisterTask is a great tool for delegating tasks and ensuring accountability. Project management tools like Trello or Asana can also be great for this.
If you’re new to meeting management software and looking for the best all-in-one solution for your organization’s needs, skip all these tools and instead, download a buyer’s guide that will take you through the eight steps it takes to choose the best meeting management software for you.
Finding the right meeting management tool can take you from letting meetings manage you, to saving time and money by holding efficient, productive meetings—what are you waiting for?