11 Essential Productivity Tools for Starting a Business in 2023

More people every day are discovering their inner entrepreneur. Starting a business brings many freedoms you simply can’t enjoy working for someone else; it also introduces a whole new level of complexity that must be managed in order to be successful. What is more, you need to get up and running quickly and be able to adapt to change as you find your place in the market.

Many sharp business owners quickly recognize that you can’t do it all yourself. Rather than hiring more people, you can find ways to work smarter. Having purpose-built tools for common administrative tasks frees you up to focus on the more important, and fulfilling, aspects of being a business owner.

Over the last 18 months of our operations here at ERP Connect Consulting, we’ve settled on a stack of tools that help us achieve our goals. To save you the search, we’d like to share with you what’s worked for us. With these, you can be in operation in as little as a week!

Finance and Operations

Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central

You might think we recommend this because we’re a Business Central consultancy. In fact, we feel that even the smallest startups can benefit from the powerful organizational capabilities, along with rich data insights, found in the Business Central platform. As your organization grows, Business Central grows with you. Conversely, if you went with a more basic accounting application, you’d be facing a costly migration to another system when you outgrow it – quite likely when you’re experiencing a spike in growth and can’t afford a slowdown.


Get paid faster by eliminating manual processes in the collection cycle. It integrates with Business Central, among many others, to automate variable billing, dunning notices, and statements. It also provides a PCI-compliant credit card processing solution.


This is a full-service HR platform, allowing you to easily manage payroll, health and financial benefits, and more. It automatically files your taxes for you while keeping you compliant and helping you find applicable tax credits to save you money.


Microsoft 365

The ever-popular office suite expanded with collaborative experiences and tools, such as Microsoft Teams and OneDrive, that keep your team connected and help you get things done.


A time tracker and timesheet app with a ton of free features, Clockify integrates with a long list of applications and has apps on nearly every platform imaginable. You can track billable time, manage your team, and streamline the time-tracking process.

Keeper Security

This is a project and business process management tool, giving you a broad offering of views, workflows, reports, and dashboards to schedule, track, plan, and more, at scale, with your entire team, and that integrates with many other applications.


The ever-popular office suite expanded with collaborative experiences and tools, such as Microsoft Teams and OneDrive, that keep your team connected and help you get things done.


Settling on a day and time that is convenient for you and your clients can involve a flurry of emails… Or you could use Calendly. Connect it to your calendar and it simply won’t offer appointments when you’re busy. Clients can select what works best for them from your available time slots.


When you don’t have time, delegate. There are many quality freelancers available on this popular platform and you can find someone to handle pretty much any task you need to accomplish.



Who has time to become a video editing expert? This tool helps you create quality video content with the least effort, helping you expand your social presence and offer thought-leading content that gets your company noticed.


You’re probably not a graphic designer either. Canva is an amazing tool that has great templates and stock art you can use to quickly create tasteful, attractive marketing material with minimal effort and even collaborate with team members on projects.

Wrap Up

These are the tools that have helped us solve problems and overcome challenges here at ERP Connect Consulting. But, there are many others! Keep looking for ways to reduce labor and make things more efficient – it will give you the edge you need to stay ahead of the competition.

Some people think a minimalist toolset is best – and most will land on a spreadsheet to accomplish every sort of task. While it is true, there is much you can do in Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets. The fact is that as your business grows, your “solution” won’t. Spreadsheets aren’t scalable and they don’t have adequate controls to prevent errors from creeping in. Get a scalable solution from the start and you’ll avoid any roadblocks to your continued progress.

Would you like to know more about these tools, and how we’ve integrated them into our workflow? Curious about how several of these can work hand-in-hand, or even integrate, with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central?  Connect with us at ERP Connect Consulting and we’ll be happy to show you more.

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