Posted on: 12 February 2019

Software you may want to try

As part of your office set up, there are several computer programmes that you will use in your daily activities that help you with your job. You may have the usual word processors or web browsers but is there any other software that you can make use of?

Essential office software

Password managers

With GDPR now in effect, it highlights the importance of keeping your sensitive information safe, and using a password manager is one way of keeping people away from your data. Programmes such as KeePass or Last Pass are free password management software created for Windows. Last Pass is free to use, but also has a premium option, and works as an extension for Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, Opera and Microsoft Edge. KeePass, on the other hand is a free to use tool, but so far only has an official Windows version, with unofficial version available for macOS, iOS, Android and Linux.

Although having all of your passwords stored in one area doesn’t sound safe, KeePass encrypts your master password to protect against cyber-attacks, with other password management systems working in the same way. These programmes protect against dictionary attacks, and even protect sensitive data from data dumps.

Internet browsers

Internet Explorer was a mainstay of the Windows operating system since 1995, finally being phased out by Edge in 2015, but since 1995, other popular browsers emerged.

One of the most widely used is Google Chrome, which is fast paced, easy to use and has a vast amount of extensions, such as ad blockers or spell checkers, and hundreds of thousands of themes that can give your browser some personality. However, Chrome is well known for taking power from your RAM if you have too many tabs open or use too many extensions, causing your computer to run slower.

Mozilla Firefox is also a free browser that can be used on the main three operating systems, Windows, macOS and Linux. Firefox offers a similar experience to its’ rival browsers, but has an easy aesthetic to get used to, and is one of the best for getting rid of pop-up adverts.

Office suites

Office suites are an essential part of office working, and there are 3 main programmes which assist in our daily lives that we can use to edit work documents, spreadsheets and presentations.

Microsoft Office suite is used by 1.2 billion people worldwide, making it the most widely used office package in the world. It is available for Windows, macOS and Linux, Android and iOS, with the basic package including Word, Excel and PowerPoint for word processing, spreadsheets and presentations. In the 2016 edition of Office, Microsoft finally introduced co-authoring into the package, a feature that had been used in competitors’ packages for a few years prior.

Google offer their own version of word processor called Google Docs through the G Suite, a cloud based storage system for documents. Google’s software packages are known as Docs for word processing, Sheets for spreadsheets and Slides for presentations. Docs was one of the few major office packages that had co-authoring, along with iWork, a feature now also available on Microsoft Office. Unfortunately, at the time of writing, G-Suite documents are not compatible for use with Word or iWork.

In a bid to compete with Microsoft, Apple released their own office suite called iWork in 2005. iWork programmes are factory installed on iMac and MacBook, and can be downloaded for free on handheld devices such as iPads or iPhones. iWork’s office software includes Pages, Numbers and Keynote, for word processing, spreadsheets and presentations respectively. iWork documents could also be co-authored via Apple’s online storage system, iCloud.

Image editing

Being able to edit your own images can save you a lot of time and having the right software can allow you to create professional looking images.

Adobe’s Photoshop is one of the most well-known and widely used products on the market for editing images, with variations on the style of software for different skill levels. PC Mag recommends products for different levels of user, with Photoshop Elements and Photoshop Lightroom being recommended for enthusiasts or developing users, and Photoshop for professional users, with Lightroom also being recommended. Photoshop is a powerful editing tool with a huge amount of functions to edit photos in a variety of different ways. Photoshop price packages range from £9.98 per month, to £49.94 per month, depending on your needs.

If you are looking for a free editing software there are a few options. GIMP is recommended by Tech Radar as a free image editing programme, with features such as advanced options, and no ads or limitations being identified. Tech Radar also praised GIMP for the similar interface to Photoshop, which allowed Photoshop users looking for a free alternative to seamlessly move to GIMP. Tech Radar did identify that new users may find the programme difficult to start using, but did also find the interface to be cluttered.

Paint.NET is another free image editing software that also received acclaim from Tech Radar, with features such as advanced editing whilst being easy to use. Paint.NET has plenty of plugins that can be used to support your work, but as an open source programme, it can be modified to suit your needs. Reviews find Paint.NET to not be as powerful as Photoshop, but still a worthy alternative for a free piece of software.

Office insurance with Premier BusinessCare

Depending on the nature of your office , there are many different insurance covers to protect your business which go beyond a standard office package policy. Whilst a package office policy can cover you for Public and Employers’ Liability insurance, you may miss out on other covers such as Professional Indemnity which can cover you in the event of a customer’s loss from advice you have given, or directors and officers (D&O) insurance which can cover you against a claim resulting from business decisions and actions.

If you have office insurance needs, get in touch with our trained insurance experts who can advise you on the insurance package what best suits your business.

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The information and tools contained in this guide are of a general informational nature and should not be relied upon as being suitable for any specific set of circumstances. We have used reasonable endeavours to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the contents but the information and tools do not constitute professional advice and must not be relied upon as such. To the extent permitted by law, we do not accept responsibility for any loss which may arise from reliance on the information or tools in our Knowledge Centre.