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Each week brings documents, emails, new jobs, and task lists. Just how much of this is different from the work you’ve done before? Odds are, not much. A number of our day-to-day tasks are variations on something.
Do not reinvent the wheel each time you start something new. Instead, use templates–standardized documents with formatting and text as starting point for new work. As soon as you save another variant of the template add, eliminate, or change any info for that document that is unique, and you are going to have the job.
Programs work anywhere: in word processors, spreadsheets, project management programs, survey platforms, and email. Here’s how to use templates from your favorite programs –and how to automatically generate documents from a template–so it’s possible to get your tasks quicker.
Templates take time to construct, and it’s easy to wonder whether they are worth the investment. The brief answer: absolutely. Editing a template requires much less time than formatting some thing. It is the difference between retyping it, or copying and pasting some text.
That’s not the only advantage: Using a template means you’re not as inclined to leave out crucial info, too. For example, if you want to send freelance writers a contributor agreement, changing a standard contract template (instead of writing a new contract every time) guarantees you won’t leave out the crucial clause regarding owning the material once you’ve paid for this.
Templates additionally guarantee consistency. Perhaps you send regular job updates to customers or investors. Using a template, you know the update will constantly have the same formatting, layout, and structure.
How to Create Fantastic Templates
Not all templates are created equal–and a few things do not need a template. Listed below are a few guidelines to follow.
First, templates should be comprehensive. It’s easier to delete information than add it , so err on the side of adding too rather than too little.
Imagine you are developing a template of your resume. You would want to list in-depth details about your responsibilities and accomplishments, so you’ll have all the information you need to apply for almost any job.
You can delete notes later on, but if it’s not from the template you may forget it.
Some tools will automatically fill in all these variables for you (more on that in a little ). But should you have to fill in the information by yourself, include some text that is obvious and simple to search for so you can locate.