Setting up your smartphone for business use involves both learning to use certain phone features and downloading the right apps. Instead of relying on a tablet or a laptop, which can be inconvenient if you do much business traveling, set up your phone to become a mobile office. Download documents, print materials as needed, securely browse from public Wi-Fi, and more when you have your phone set up for business use.
Use a VPN
You’ll be connected to public Wi-Fi from your business phone if you do much traveling. Your accounts, including sensitive business information, aren’t safe from hackers on public Wi-Fi networks. Since you need your phone for business, you can’t simply stop using it because the only available Wi-Fi network is a public one. Sometimes, you can opt to go for cellular data, but that can run up your data costs, and some apps won’t work unless they have a Wi-Fi connection.
Instead, set up a VPN (virtual private network) on your smartphone. VPNs encrypt your data to make your browsing more secure. VPNs cost a low monthly subscription for smartphones, which is well worth the price you pay to keep your data secure.
Sync Your Smartphone With Wi-Fi Office Devices
As long as your Wi-Fi office devices, such as printers, are compatible with smartphone apps, you’ll be able to print documents and pictures directly from your phone. Set up an office printer that can print from AirPrint for iOS or Cloud Print for Android. Then, all you need to do is select the printer device in your phone and send the file to it for printing. Not all apps support printing, but for office documents that you’ll print from Microsoft Word or Excel, printing should be easy.
Connect Your Device to the Cloud
Whether your small business uses Dropbox, OneDrive, or another cloud-based storage system, sync your phone with the cloud so that you can access business files. When you’re on the go for business, you won’t have to pull your laptop or tablet out to view new files that your co-workers or employees have created. Make tasks easier on yourself by formatting your files for an app that allows you to leave comments on documents or make edits. For these reasons, many professionals like to use Google Drive.
Set Up Your Voicemail
Voicemail is something your business phone absolutely must have. You can learn how to set up voicemail on a business phone so that your employees and business contacts can leave you messages if you can’t answer your phone. Make sure your voicemail greeting is professional and informative. Write what you’re going to say first, then recite your message several times before recording it. Always remember that you can delete the recording and try again if you don’t like your first attempt.
Download the app version of QuickBooks, Mint, or Expensify to track your business expenses from your phone. Look for features that allow you to record expenses when you travel for business, such as taking pictures of receipts and automatically generated expense reports. When you’re the owner of a business, an app connection to business funds and accounts helps you track overhead, inventory, and vendor payments, too.
Create Separate Personal and Business Email Accounts
Many people use one phone both professionally and personally, but you should always use separate email accounts for business and personal matters. Email management apps allow you to easily categorize your accounts and contacts, so that you can access both personal and professional email accounts. Download an app specifically for managing business connections so you don’t mix up friends’ numbers with business contacts.
Your phone is a fantastic business resource once you set it up for business use. Think about what needs you have when you’re on the go for business. Usually a phone feature or an app will fill those needs. You’ll want to spend the time setting up your phone and separating your personal and business accounts so that when you are on the road, you can think about meeting clients and making deals, not about managing your technology.