Way back in 2009, when Mac.AppStorm was in its infancy, we reviewed Daylite, a really easy way to manage your business using just one app — and it impressed us. We really loved the range of features, different business areas present within the app and the tight e-mail integration.
Since then, though, a lot has changed with Daylite so let’s take a look at the fourth version to see if it is still as good as we remember it to be.
As Daylite is designed to be run across multiple computers, you’ll need to set up one of your Macs as a server so that others can access the company database easily. But don’t worry: Daylite includes a server administration program in the package, so all you need to do is install it and get it up and running (which takes no time at all).
You can create as many different databases as you like (though it’s best to keep one per company, in my opinion) and through the Server Admin panel (as you can see in the screenshot above), you can manage all the devices accessing your database (including iOS devices, which we’ll come onto in a minute) as well as configure the backup schedule. Your database is normally backed up once a week (in the example above, my database backs up every Sunday at 2 AM) though this can be altered to suit your individual preferences.
As I currently only have one Mac, I’m going to set up Daylite to access my database locally (rather than over a local or wide-area network) however setting it up over a network is really simple — all you have to do is enable server access over the internet by clicking on the relevant option in the Server Admin panel.
Daylite is designed to replace your existing content management system (CMS) in your business through integrating your company’s calendars, contacts, objectives, tasks, notes and so on. Individual features can be accessed via the menu which runs down the left-hand side of the screen and the Home panel gives you a quick overview of what’s going on for the day, including a list of any events planned, tasks due and any upcoming events in the next week.
The app features an in-built notifications system (which also show up as a badge icon) that alerts you to any important upcoming events, tasks and so on. You can click on Dismiss to get rid of them or More to be taken to that particular notification within Daylite.
You can quickly add an item to any section of Daylite by clicking on the plus button, meaning that you don’t have to navigate to that particular section of the app. I personally found this quick-access toolbar highly useful — Daylite is a complicated app with plenty of features and this made it easy to add something really quickly, rather than flicking to the relevant section.
Calendars and Contacts
The Calendar and Contacts section of Daylite throws back no surprises to the novice user and there’s pretty much everything you’d expect in there from a business-orientated app.
Daylite focuses on collaboration, so with individual appointments, for example, you can see all the tasks assigned to that particular event. In my example above, for my client approval meeting, I have to plan and execute the DVD release event (which is due on July 11th). You can also create multiple calendars and assign them to various staff members (for example, I’ve created a calendar especially for the sales team).
Your contacts within Daylite can be sorted into individual groups (I’ve got groups for my clients, my potential sales leads, my suppliers and so on). Just like with calendar events, clicking on an individual contact brings up a list of any activity associated with him or her, allowing you to keep track of everything really easily.
Project management is a really powerful feature within Daylite. Not only can you add tasks, notes and appointments to individual projects but Daylite will also help you keep track of each stage through the Progress view (shown in the screenshot below).
And of course, as everything in Daylite is accessed from one database, any changes made will automatically be pushed to every single user, ensuring that your team (or entire company) stays up to date with all the latest changes. There are plenty of other features within Daylite that come in useful when it comes to managing projects, such as the ability to define individual objectives and tasks and support for sales opportunities. It really does seem that whatever business you’re in, Daylite will work for you in some way or another!
Of course, accurate reporting is vital to any business and Daylite features this built-in — there’s no external software to use (and no messing around with complicated Excel spreadsheets!) at all. There are a number of …read more