Introduction to Airtable Software
In today’s pandemic situation. Over 80% of corporate America work from home while still connected remotely to the enterprise network. This has lead to new challenges that most business owners are trying to resolve. These include improving remote employee productivity, team coordination, and collaboration while still sitting in their respective makeshift home office.
While project managers are evaluating the next best tool to coordinate with remote employees, legacy project management tools lack modern requirements including but not limited to team management, collaboration, coordination, and time management.
A recent survey conducted by the project management institute states that while modern businesses are leaping to an agile approach, not all tools are made equals. Few factors that software vendors fail achieve include:
- Steep learning curve: Business owners are not willing to spend days training their employees,
- High initial cost: Hiring expensive consultants to set up the software,
- A dedicated resource is needed to manage the day to day operations of the project management software.
These are probably the main reasons why most businesses out there are still relying on spreadsheet-based solutions like Microsoft Excel and Google sheets. Additionally, most employees are inherently trained to use spreadsheet software.
In hindsight, if spreadsheet-based solutions provided features over and above those boring rows and columns, including real-time collaboration, modern elements like integrations with messenger, email, calendar, file share, then business owners are willing to give it a second look.
Spreadsheet on steroids
Enter Airtable, a San Francisco based collaboration software manufacturer with a unique proposition of applying database features to a spreadsheet application. This allows business owners to take advantage of modern-day database features while still being comfortable on a spreadsheet-like user interface.
- Airtable blocks are at the heart of the operation while using this feature-rich software. Blocks, a.k.a widgets allow you to add an app-like functionality that you can mix and match to create perfect workflows for your team.
They can choose from and add maps and geocodes, bar, line, and scatter charts, timelines, page designer, 3D model explorer, and color palettes for greater visualization. They can use countdown timers, hold video chat, send SMS, start time trackers, and add a world clock for better planning and collaboration. With third-party tools, they can enhance their analysis and workflow with Cloud Vision, pivot tables, translation, importers, and powerful search tools.
- Airtable forms on the other hand provide an intelligent way to collect, organize, and analyze data by allowing you to create custom forms using the Airatable blocks feature.
Using a drag and drop functionality, you can create custom forms in seconds. Additionally, for every form submission, you are given insightful statistics that allow your team members to take actionable courses of action.
It’s native integration with Clearbit, a B2B lead data engine, allows you to enrich responses to leads based on lead details collected.
Did you know? Data collected from the Airtable form can be translated to your language of choice.
- Airtable project management allows you to manage your large scale projects, sub-projects, and tasks. You can easily customize it to fit your exact processes, helping your team work with precision and efficiency.
Using the Airtable base, you can create a central hub for all your project management activities. For each task associated with a project, you are given details of the project owner, status, effort levels, start date, and the due date.
What excites us is that Airtable also gives you a kanban view of all your project phases.
While there are many alternatives and competitors in this space, to really understand the value proposition of Airtable, one must understand that Airtable provides companies with a perfect upgrade for a spreadsheet-based project management tool with inheritance database like features.
SMB companies currently leveraging MS Excel and Google Sheets should choose Airatables as the perfect alternative.
The last few years have seen many such cloud-based online tools with overlapping definitions. Commonly they are categorized or sub-categorized as:
- Collaboration Management
- Task Management
- Project Management
- Remote Workforce Management
Software’s such as Asana, monday.com, Trello are the usual suspects that most companies may want to evaluate before choosing a clear winner
Airtable vs Monday
Monday is a top choice for companies that communicate heavily outside the office, such as in retail or service industries, or for manufacturing and IT companies.
Whereas, Airtabbles is best suited for creative and marketing agencies.
Airtable vs Asana
While Airtable focusses on simplicity due to its inheritance visual appeal of being a spreadsheet on steroids, Asana takes a unique approach with features over and above what other competitors provide. Asana’s and workload management features will help prevent team member burnout. The workload tab lets you see team and individual workloads, and you can assign an effort level for each task.
Airatable vs Trello
The primary difference between is that while Trello focusses on helping users manage tasks in a simple but effective kanban view, Airtable is capable of storing huge amounts of data as a database, then creating dynamic views to let you sort everything from basic data to complex tasks with custom filters and parameters.
Using the Airtable Zapier integrations, you can connect 3rd party apps to automate a workflow. For instance, you can kick off an integration from an Airtable database to automatically send emails, log customers, and more.
In addition to the Zapier integration, you can take advantage of integrating with Integromat, Workato, Box, Dropbox, Google Drive, Gmail, Typeform, slack, and over 2000 app integrations.
Fortunately, airtable has a free plan for starters. The premium plans start at $10/user/month and goes all the way to enterprise pricing.
Airtable is a natural progression from spreadsheets. It is ideally suitable for individuals, small teams, and companies who love their MS excels and Google sheets. Companies in the advertising, media, and creative space will love all the feature sets it has got to offer.
And since it has a free plan, there is no harm trying.