Today’s workplace is much different than it was back in the past. Many years ago, the workplace often involved stacks of paper, pens, pencils, typewriters, and many other devices and tools that were associated with the office. Nowadays, however, the stacks of paper and typewriters have given way to computers and printers, and pens and pencils have been in many instances replaced by a smart pen.
With the move of most of our work into the digital realm, the methods for organizing our workflow have changed dramatically. Instead of file drawers and desk organizers, our tools now consist of computer software and websites, and the organization of such can often be confusing, especially with the rapid changes that occur in technology. Keeping all of your tools efficiently organized can be difficult, but with some handy suggestions, you can seriously improve your workflow in a simple and efficient manner. Here are some ways that you can do this to help streamline your productivity.
Organize Your Bookmarks
Much of the work we do on our computers often occurs in the web browser, thus making it probably the most important piece of software on our computers. As such, keeping the bookmarks of your needed links organized is a must. Most web browsers, such as Google Chrome, make this relatively easy. Creating folders in your Bookmarks bar is often a very helpful way to keep your links organized into group, allowing you to keep your bookmarks bar from being cluttered.
Those who work with a large number of files know how difficult it can be to find the one exact file that you need at a given time. A great way to simplify this process can be by keeping your filenames to some sort of standard. A good practice for this is to add something like a date at the end of the filename (for instance, FileName_06-18-18). This can make it much easier to help find your files quickly, without needing to spend precious time searching for them.
Group Your Applications
This is similar to grouping your bookmarks as stated above, except you want to try grouping your applications together. This is easy to do in Windows 7, 8, and 10 by pinning them to the task bar in a certain order. This allows you to quickly and easily access them without having to hunt for them. If you use MacOS or Linux, either operating system should let you do these things as easily as in Windows.
Organize Files by Type
Over the course of doing work for any amount of time, you are certain to generate a lot of files on your computer. Organizing your files by type can help a lot in keeping things organized and making sure they are easy to find. In Windows, you can group photos, videos, and music in the folders in your home directory that Windows automatically creates. There is even a Documents folder for all other documents. Don’t be afraid to make folders within these directories for further organizing.
Learn Keyboard Shortcuts
Almost anyone can easily use a mouse for navigating through their computer. What many people don’t realize, however, is that there are keyboard shortcuts for almost anything you can do with a mouse. Using keyboard shortcuts can be a timesaver and help simplify many of the common tasks that you perform on your computer. Learning these keyboard shortcuts is easy, and most anyone can learn them quickly and remember them with practice.
Create and Follow a Flowchart
Most people have learned about flowcharts at some point in their lives, usually in school. If you find that you are having trouble with keeping yourself and your workflow optimizing, try creating a flowchart for your everyday work tasks. Doing this and following it can greatly help you get in the habit of using the most optimal workflow possible. If you use Microsoft Office, you can do this quite easily using Microsoft Visio.
Use Workflow Management Software
For those who are searching for the best way to help improving your digital workflow, there are software solutions available that are made specifically for this purpose. Workflow management software can greatly help you in creating a digital workflow process.
Use Your Imagination
All of the suggestions listed above are great ways to help improve and optimize your digital workflow, but they are by no means the only ways to do it. How comfortable a person will feel performing certain tasks depends greatly on the individual, so don’t be afraid to think of your own ways to increase your productivity. With your imagination, you should be able to organize your workflow in the best way possible.