I have been exploring task management Apps for years. Recently, I stumbled on an App that has surprised me with its ease of use, plentiful features (even in the free version), and it’s versatility. It is called Yanado.
The strength of Yanado isn’t in the hundreds of integrations that it has, but in one key integration with Gmail.
Yanado is a chrome extension and operates within the same interface and the same page as Gmail (it can also be used on its own page if desired, but this negates some of the benefits as I see it). Yanado does these things well:
- Project management
- Task management
- Add emails (incoming and outgoing) as tasks
- Due dates and reminders (can add tasks right into google calendar)
- Visualize your work with the Kanban boards or list view
- Share tasks with others (paid version)
- Make list and/or task templates (paid version)
- Easy to use. Very slight learning curve.
After activating Yanado, it creates a narrow dashboard on the top of Gmail that can be pulled down to either a list view or Kanban boards, depending on one’s preferences.
By clicking on the two arrows it will open to a typical Kanban view. You can create additional lists, and “statuses”. Tasks can be dragged around, or manually changed. There are various “View” options as well, “status”, “due date”, etc.
The due date view is handy because from there I can drag tasks around quickly which automatically changes the due date to whichever column I put it in. So, if you find yourself behind or a new task comes in that takes priority, you can quickly bump the other tasks to another day.
As many options and tools as Yanado has, the real strength, in my opinion, is the option to “Add as Task” that appears when you select an email or while it is open. Clicking it will produce a dropdown menu with all the lists you have available. This allows you to turn emails into tasks and you can associate that email thread with the task for reference later.
When the task is created it will automatically pull the task name from the subject of the email. It will also place the content of the email in the description. I typically do the following:
- Edit the task name if needed
- Set due date and decide whether it is a recurring task or not.
- Choose whether to add to google calendar (as pictured below)
- Create any subtasks (note: if you decide later that a subtask should be its own task, you can easily do this as well)
When you scan across the top of the task view you’ll see many items. Each will allow you to manipulate that task right there.
- The owner of the task (defaults to you if the only user)
- The list the task is in
- The status or column it is in
- The star makes it a priority task
- The email icon will take you to the original email thread while leaving the task window up, useful for adding to the description, making comments, or adding subtasks.
- Three dots are settings you can apply to the task; create a template, delete, print task, set due date to recurring, etc.
There is a little “?” within the interface which opens the in-app tech support chat window. I think the longest I’ve waited for a response was 2 minutes.
At one instance, I had changed my computer setup and Yanado wasn’t working properly. I started chatting with them and they aggressively sought to help me. The issue persisted another day and they continued working on the issue in the background until it was resolved. I’ve never known a team to be so responsive especially considering the issues were due to changes on my end.
I’ve even had some oddball requests which they found creative solutions to (e.g. a custom Zapier integration that allowed me to save an article to a specific notebook in Evernote which then automatically created a task in Yanado).
How I Use It
I get a lot of automated emails for work signaling various tasks that I need to take action on. I also wear many hats during the day, so, I use the “Add as task” command in the email thread to immediately add an email to the correct task list.
When writing emails there is also an “Add as task” option in the compose new message view which allows you to add that thread as a task before you even get a reply.
Primarily I try to start my day by using the “Due date” view and identifying tasks that I need to accomplish that day. I try to leave some room so that I can jump on any emergencies, answer a sales call, etc.
What I have found with Yanado is the balance between “enough” features to manage tasks well, without having so many features that I get overwhelmed.
Neither GDI, INC or the author of this post are receiving any kind of kickback from Yanado. I am writing about it for two reasons, 1) I found this App really useful, 2) as a company we are all about paying it forward. Giving without the expectation of return.
Give it a try and tell us what you think. Are there any other Apps you have found that might not be as well known but you find incredibly useful? Let us know below!
Tim Hoke – Design / Sales Manager
Gould Design, INC