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Every week brings files, emails, new projects, and task lists. How much of that is completely different from the work you’ve done? Odds are, maybe not much. Many of our day-to-day tasks are variations on something.
Don’t reinvent the wheel every time you start something new. Use templates–as starting point for 17, standardized documents with formatting and text. As soon as you save another version of the template, just add, remove, or alter any info for that exceptional record, and you are going to have the job done in a fraction of the time.
Templates work everywhere: in word processors, spreadsheets, project management apps, survey platforms, and email. Here is the way to use templates and how to create documents from a template–so it’s possible to get your tasks quicker.
Templates take time to construct, and it’s easy to wonder if they’re worth the investment. The brief answer: absolutely. Editing a template requires much less time than formatting something. It’s the difference between copying and pasting some text, or retyping it.
That is only one benefit: Using a template means you are less likely to leave out key info, also. By way of example, if you want to send freelance writers a contributor agreement, changing a standard contract template (instead of composing a new contract each time) ensures you won’t leave out that crucial clause about owning the content once you’ve paid for this.
Templates additionally guarantee consistency. Maybe you send regular project updates to investors or clients. With a template, you know the update will have the formatting, layout, and standard structure.
How to Create Great Templates
Not many templates are created equal–and some things do not require a template. Listed below are a couple of tips to follow.
First, templates must be comprehensive. It is more easy to delete info than add it in, so err on the side of adding too rather than too small.
Imagine you’re creating a template of your own resume. You would want to record facts so you are going to have all the info you want to submit an application for almost any job.
You can delete notes on, but you might forget it when it’s not in the template.
Some applications will automatically fill in all these factors for you (more on this in a bit). But if you have to fill in the data by yourself, include some text that is obvious and easy to look for so you can find text that has to be changed without a lot of work.