As a WordPress support engineer at Kinsta, I spend a lot of time on my Mac. In this post, I’ll share five apps that I use everyday to troubleshooting WordPress with clients, and to make my workday more productive.
A good web browser is very important for my job as a support engineer at Kinsta. On an average 8 hour workday, I probably spend 5-6 hours interacting with a web browser. While I use Brave for personal web browsing, Google Chrome is my browser of choice for work. At the moment, Chrome has a ~63% market share, so if I’m troubleshooting a website with a client, there’s a good chance we’ll be using the same browser. I also like how easy it is in Chrome to disable browser caching with its built-in developer tools. I’m sure other browsers make it easy as well, but I wouldn’t know since I only use Chrome for work.
Google Chrome takes up 5-6 hours of my day. Slack takes up the rest. As a fully remote employee, Slack is how I keep in touch with colleagues scattered around the world. I don’t really have much to say about Slack. It’s an amazing communication tool, and a huge part of what makes remote work possible (and even efficient) in today’s day and age. In addition to using Slack at Kinsta, I also use it to manage communications for a few side projects.
Alfred bills itself as a productivity app for macOS, and I can confirm they are absolutely right. Even though it runs as a background app, Alfred makes a huge impact on my efficiency and productivity at work. Alfred is basically Apple Spotlight on steroids with a bunch of additional features like text replacement, hotkey mapping, clipboard history, custom workflows, and more.
As a WordPress support engineer, I run Terminal commands like
wp option get home or
wp user create (username) (email) --role=administrator dozens of times per day. There’s no point in wasting time and energy on repetitive commands. With Alfred, I can type a “random” string like
\\5, and it will automatically be replaced with
wp option get home.
I’m currently running Alfred 4 with the optional Powerpack, and I highly recommend checking it out if you’re remotely interested in being more productive on your Mac. I promise you won’t be disappointed.
A reliable and fast text editor with regex support is a very important tool for my job as a WordPress support engineer. Over the years, I’ve tried out a bunch of text editors including Sublime Text, Atom, and BBEdit. Every text editor has its pros and cons, but Sublime Text is the best fit for my workflow.
The app’s design language makes sense to me, and the capability to add additional features through packages is nice as well. In terms of specific tools, I use multi-line editing and regex search and replace on a daily basis.
The downside of using a computer all day is, well, using a computer all day. Working as a WordPress support engineer means spending 8 hours a day looking at a computer screen. From an eye health perspective, that’s obviously not recommended – our retinas were not designed to be flooded with blue light for 8 hours a day. Alas, I love working with WordPress, helping our clients solve website issues, and developing my own apps and websites, so reducing the amount of “blue light intake” is a good first step to a more long term solution.
To reduce blue light on my Mac, I use Flux. It offers a lot of customizability in terms of when I want blue light to be reduced, and also what apps should be excluded. For example, color temperature is an important factor in photo and video editing, so Flux is set up to automatically return my screen back to default settings when Lightroom, Final Cut Pro, and Photoshop are active.
Google Chrome, Slack, Alfred, Sublime Text, and Flux are five apps I use everyday as a WordPress support engineer at Kinsta. Other honorable mentions include iTerm 2, Transmit, and Spotify. After compiling this list, I realized something amazing – most of these apps are either free or have a very low price tag. In other words, working as a WordPress support engineer is incredibly cheap compared to the “startup costs” of some other professions. When I was working as an electronic music designer on Broadway, putting together a complete audio sample library was a multi-thousand dollar endeavor – kind of off topic, but it’s just something that came to mind as I was writing this post.
If you’re interested in working remotely at Kinsta as a support engineer or something else, feel free to check out our careers page. We are always looking for talented individuals to join the team!