Saturday, October 24, 2009

Tips and technologies to improve your efficiency

Though I don't have any formal IT training or designations, I've stumbled across a few tips and tricks to save you precious time and become more efficient.

1. Work off of two monitors
I wish that I had a citation to reference or some data to share regarding the increased productivity and reduced printing costs. Ever since I got my work laptop I've been working off of two monitors at work and at home. To do this, dock your laptop, run it, and open it up. Once you log in, right click on your desktop (PC) and click Properties, then settings. you should see a second monitor grayed out. Click on it, then check the box that says "extend my Windows desktop onto this monitor". In my work, I tend to keep my e-mail on my left monitor, my calendar and other programs on my right monitor.

2. Create a PDF instead of printing a piece of paper
This is a huge timesaver for me and helps me archive my files. If there is a website that I want to reference again, I'll print the page as a PDF, then create a note within the PDF that contains the URL of the website. You can use a program like MS Access, MS Excel, or Endnote to manage your references.

3. Get to know your keyboard shortcuts
There are so many keyboard shortcuts for almost everything that you don't even need a mouse. Save yourself some time by using a shortcut instead of reaching for the mouse to save a document, open a new webpage, or move between programs. you'll find that holding down Alt + Tab will be your friend and move you much faster around your computer.

4. Put your follow-up items or your to do's in your calendar
In passing in our hallway, someone will ask me if I can get back to them by the end of the week. I'll jot it on a piece of paper and then put the task or a few keywords for recall on my calendar with a reminder.

I hope I've saved you some time and made you slightly more efficient. Give these tips some time and feel free to share what else works for you. I'm always looking for a gold nugget that will make it more productive.

No comments:

Post a Comment