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Office Computer Tips for the Power User


Every now and again, I remember the early days of computing and how important shortcuts were. I might be dating myself, but those early days behind a computer included a lot of DOS commands to search directories and copy, move, and delete files. We would write ‘batch’ files in DOS and save them to perform repetitive tasks. Windows' earliest versions delivered an interface with icons and shortcuts. Then, with the web, we got hyperlinks and bookmarks. Now, we have apps we carry around with us! Times have definitely changed, but the essence of computing is still about efficiency and organization. 

Below I have compiled a list of handy tips for today’s worker bee!

Stay Organized

  • Create folders with meaningful names, both in your inbox as well as your storage location. This can help you find historical items more quickly

  • Name files with meaningful names. How many times has someone emailed you document1.docx?

  • Create shortcuts to open frequently used folders. You can do this by right clicking on the folder’s shortcut. Assign a CTRL+ALT+KEY shortcut such as CTRL+ALT+C to bring up a “Customer” folder

  • Use software to perform repetitive tasks, learn about macros, or use software to paste repeatedly typed phrases or email responses

  • Opt for two (or even three) computer monitors, as more screen space helps spread out your work, which is especially important if you are switching applications often 

Get Comfortable

  • Make sure you have followed basic ergonomic guidelines to set up your work area

  • Consider a vertical mouse to relieve wrist strain (these are expensive but worth it!)

  • Office temperatures vary, so dress in layers when appropriate

  • Don’t forget to get up and move, stretch, and breathe

Additional tips for today’s computer user

  • Make sure all of your relevant contact info is in your email signature, including your email address

  • Scanners set at higher resolution create attachments that are unnecessarily big. Consider lowering resolution if not required by the recipient (i.e., for “text only” documents)

  • Take a class, request training, watch Youtube videos, or do whatever you can to constantly improve your skills

  • Share your knowledge with your peers and learn from them as well

I hope I've left you with a few new ideas that you can start implementing now to become more efficient, more skilled, and more organized. If you have any tips to add to this list, share them in the comments below!


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