It’s not only what technology we use at the workplace but it’s also how we use it that greatly affects our everyday workplace productivity. I am sure all of us have struggled or have witnessed a co-worker struggle at some point – technology can be a frustrating thing. In these technical tips, we will walk you through some easy ways to avoid some of these common issues.
1. Start the day fresh – Power Off.
Log off and/or shut down your computer every night (or at least once a week) as a best practice. Shutting down your computer means that Windows closes all running programs and completely shuts off your machine, giving it a fresh start when you power it on the next morning. This will help to ensure that no work gets lost, as it will prompt you to save everything before shutting down as well as saving electricity. Rebooting will help release Memory and often sort out little ‘bugs’ before they become an issue. Just think of it as a ‘power nap’.
Check with your Technical Team first for scheduled maintenance times. Also, keep in mind that you will not be able to remote into your PC from home if it is powered off.
2. Keep browsing tabs to a minimum.
The more browser tabs you have open at a time, the slower and more unstable your computer is likely to be. People often forget that you can actually use your Brower History as a better alternative to this. Your computer tracks where you have been, so if there was an interesting article you read and wanted to go back to – simply check your history. There are also apps out there that can help manage tabs. For example, ‘TooManyTabs’ or ‘The Great Suspender’ will actually suspend your tabs, so that they are not active, but you still have access to them.
3. Always save to the network.
You should always save your work onto your network drive – not your personal C: drive. This will ensure that all of your documents are getting backed up properly, and in most cases will let you jump back to previous versions of your documents. It also allows you to have access to these documents from any computer in your network and makes file sharing with colleagues much quicker and easier.
4. Battery life.
It is a best practice to let your battery completely drain every once and a while. I know, sounds backward right? It is actually healthy for a battery to drain completely and then charge fully every so often to help prolong its life. Other tips: turn your screen brightness down and use your ‘sleep’ or ‘hibernation’ settings rather than ‘standby’ mode when your computer is not in use.
5. Dual (or triple!) monitors.
If you use more than one application at a time, dual monitors can be a life saver. They allow you to expand your desktop, getting more screen real estate for your open programs. They are especially helpful when doing data entry tasks – it is surprising the number of human errors that can be decreased simply by being able to see the information side by side. If you are using Windows 8 there are also some cool screen splitting features that you should be aware of. Ask us for more information!
6. Education on certain programs.
If you are noticing that there are multiple people in your organization that is using a program ineffectively or are easily frustrated by a program, it might be worth it to get some training on that program. At Sure Systems, we offer lunch time training for many different programs and applications. It might be worth it to get some additional training on these programs and have a technician show you some shortcuts on how to use the program most efficiently.
7. Communicate with your technician.
It is important to reach out to your technical support system for advice on how to use programs most efficiently. There are often shortcuts and tricks that users are not aware of that can greatly increase the effectiveness of how a program is used. If you have regular on-site visits with your technician that is a great time to ask questions about these programs – you’ll be surprised how much you can learn in a 10-minute conversation with your technician!
If you would like more information on any of the points mentioned above, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us – firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to schedule a lunch & learn for your staff or one-on-one time with a technician to help increase staff efficiency and workplace productivity please feel free to contact us as well.