Tech Savvy: Using Technology to Lighten Your Workload by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

 by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated


 Did you know that you can add time to your day?  No, the time fairy isn’t going to come add another hour to the clock for us, but we can gain some ground by using the time we have more efficiently.  The technology is there, all we have to do is learn to use it.windsock


Get Mobile


Today’s PDA’s are incredibly versatile.  In one handheld device you can schedule your day, track your to-do list, answer email, call a client, and surf the Internet.  Staying caught up on things is easy when you have access to everything you need, anytime you need it.  Here are a few tips to help you make the most of your PDA:

l       Read the manual.  It may seem boring, but understanding how it works will be the key to making the most of your investment.


l       Speed up email and Internet access with Wi-Fi.  When shopping for a PDA, select a model with Wi-Fi capability.


l       Check out the keyboards when testing out different models.  You’ll want to be able to enter text comfortably if you plan to use email or word processing features.


Go Online


The Internet is a vast source of time saving technology.  Hook up to a few of these time-savers, and you’ll be enjoying more free time before you know it:


l       Sign up for online banking and auto-payments to cut time on opening mail, writing checks, and sending out your bills snail-mail style.


l       RSS feeds can keep you up-to-date on the happenings in your industry.  You’ll need to install a feed reader, such as Google Reader.  Once you have a reader, subscribe to your favorite websites.  Generally, you can easily subscribe by clicking on the orange RSS symbol.


l       Google Alerts will send you an email update on specific topics that are posted on the Internet. Select your search parameters, and how often you wish to be updated, and the site will send you an email summary complete with links.


Get to Know Your Software


Understanding the software you use can make a huge difference in how efficient you are throughout the day.  Set aside some time to get to know the features of the software programs you use most often.  Usually, there are short cuts you can take advantage of, such as templates, hot keys and macros.  Time spent becoming proficient in the tools you use most, will pay off big in the long run.