But what about tech for your personal use? Are you even aware of the complex stack you might have created for yourself?
I recently switched to a new computer, so became keenly aware of the tech stack I had curated to allow me to be connected and perform better at work. My stack consists of a combination of five primary areas of technology.
The first area is personal performance and consists of tools like Trello, Grammarly and the Google Chrome browser. Trello helps me with project management and priorities. Grammarly is a backstop for writing and editing. Google Chrome, which houses all of my passwords, access points and content, would probably be considered the cornerstone of my stack.
The second area is collaboration, which includes tools like Slack, IM, and now WebexTeams. These are the platforms that help me communicate with people, gain access to information and push projects down the line. These are accessible across platforms like desktop and mobile and they enable me to be more efficient.
The third portion of my stack is focused on storage and encompasses tools like Dropbox, Evernote and iCloud Drive. These are transferrable from computer to computer and give me cloud access to everything I need or have created in the past. In the olden days, that transfer from machine to machine would have taken me days. Now it’s as simple as download and install, or even just a quick click into a browser for access.
The fourth portion of my stack is focused on professional performance and the tools I need to create. These include, but are not limited to, Sketch and Microsoft Office. These are the two most important tools I have for creation and development and can run alongside Google Drive, which I access in my Chrome browser. These are the ways I create and share information, manifesting my time in output.
The fifth area is purely for fun: Spotify and a few other apps that give me entertainment or enable me to help focus. These are as crucial to me as Sketch or Office and are a no-brainer for me to add to a new machine.
Each of these tools is now cloud-based and essential for work purposes, but I tend to subscribe to these on my own because they are consistent and they follow me around from role to role, company to company.
Over the last 15 years I have curated these as my primary tools and embedded them on my desktop, on mobile and other devices as needed. They have a fixed cost associated with them, and my personal privacy is protected by an array of passwords that I have to remember (it’s also necessary to have a password vault as well).
It’s exciting that all these tools are also becoming AI-enabled so they can have slightly more automation and can provide value without my overt action being taken. Like any enterprise solution, I revisit them from time to time to make sure they are providing value and they are up-to-date for my needs. In this respect I am my own IT department, too!
What does your personal tech stack look like?