Organizing Your Hard Drive by Meggin McInstosh, Ph.D.

In General
Aug 19th, 2013

Hard driveIn this day and age, if our computers are not working well, it causes a significant decline in our productivity. Consider these Top Ten Productivity Tips:

  1. Put all your MS Office documents within the same folders, i.e., regardless of whether they are Word, PowerPoint, or Excel documents that relate to a certain project, keep the documents together.

  2. Use some kind of ‘Search’ software.   I have used EasyReach, XI, and am currently using the search function in Vista and it is working well.  I know that Mac users have had options for many years.  Believe me, Mac users love to tell me how easy their life is with a Mac and you’ve probably heard that, too, if you’re a PC user.

  3. Use an outline concept for the folders on your hard drive. Start with broad categories and move down to specific categories and folders.

  4. Rename documents with current dates if they are the type to be revised.

  5. Delete all but the most recent item when you complete a revision. Note: For major documents such as articles, grant proposals, dissertations, programming code, and the like, then it is wise to keep older versions, just in case. You may want to keep them backed up on more than one device, as well.

  6. Type the date something has been revised at the top of the document and then just change it each time you revise.

  7. Create “history” (or “old”) folders within other folders, so you still have access to documents, but they aren’t cluttering up your screen when you are looking for something.

  8. If you work with multiple people in your office, have a file in your computer for each person.

  9. If you work with multiple projects in your office, have a file for each project.

  10. Put a note in your planner once a quarter to clean out the folders on your hard drive.

Just try the tips above that make sense for you and your situation. Choose one and try that out, then choose another one that works.

And if you liked these tips you may be interested in the Get a Plan! Guide® to Ridding Your Workspace of Clutter part of the Get a Plan! Guides® series designed to give you the ideas and inspiration to do your work easier, faster, and in a more focused fashion.