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Each week brings job lists, emails, files, and new jobs. Just how much of this is totally different from the work you’ve done? Odds are, maybe not much. A number of our day-to-day tasks are variations on something we’ve done countless times before.
Do not reinvent the wheel each time you start something fresh. Instead, use templates–standardized files as starting point for new work. As soon as you save a separate variant of the template, just add, eliminate, or alter any data for that record that is unique, and you are going to have the new work.
Programs work everywhere: in word processors, spreadsheets, project management apps, survey programs, and also email. Here’s how to use templates and to automatically create documents from a template–so it’s possible to get your tasks done quicker.
Programs take time to build, 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 something. It’s the difference between retyping it, or copying and pasting some text.
That is only one benefit: Using a template means you’re not as likely to leave out key info, too. By way of example, if you need to send freelance authors a contributor arrangement, changing a standard contract template (rather than writing a new contract each time) ensures you won’t leave out that crucial clause about owning the content once you’ve paid for it.
Templates also guarantee consistency. You send regular project updates to investors or customers. With a template, you know the upgrade will have the exact same formatting, layout, and arrangement.
How to Create Great Templates
Not many templates are created equal–and a few things don’t need a template. Here are a few tips to follow.
First, templates must be comprehensive. So err on the side of adding also instead of too small, it is simpler to delete information than add it in.
Imagine you’re creating a template of your resume. You’d want to list in-depth details about your duties and achievements, and that means you are going to have all the information you want to submit an application for almost any job.
You can always delete notes on, but you may forget it in the last 25, if it’s not in the template.
Some applications will automatically fill in all these variables for you (more on this in a bit). But if you have to fill in the data on your own, include some text that is simple and obvious to look for so it is possible to find.