Word processors are designed to make your life easier, but many people fail to capitalise on all the helpful features that they could be using to make their lives easier and their working methods more efficient.
Almost everyone would agree that the increasing availability of technology makes our lives easier, not least in the workplace. Whole jobs exist now on the basis that there is a market for roles that make use of the most popular applications and, of course, the internet. Information that would now have filled whole rooms with files can now be stored on one computer and the use of e-mail has made written communication faster by several degrees of magnitude. However, the advance of technology can be hard to keep up with, meaning that you are spending time doing tasks that you could automate if you only knew how to use the applications’ functionality to your advantage.
Document templates are one of those things that are used constantly by those who appreciate the value of being able to replicate commonly used forms, letters that must all contain the same wording, legal documents and contracts that have to contain the correct terminology and any other process that requires the use of the same information over and over again. Of course, the process of setting up the templates can be time consuming, but the initial investment will be repaid several times over as you come to use them again and again for the foreseeable future.
You also benefit from consistency of tone. Whilst it is nice for the people that you work with to receive personalised documentation from you, it is more important to project a professional and reliable image. Allowing members of staff to compose letters that are sent on a regular basis will inevitably lead to confusion and if the message is not conveyed accurately and clearly, then you could find yourself fending off queries and complaints over trivial matters. All this can be resolved by the use of templates that leave no room for interpretation by your staff and can be hugely helpful. You can also use them as actions in your database, allowing letters or even e-mails to be triggered by certain activities and thus automating the chain of contact even further. This way, you can keep an accurate record of when contact has been made and have a complete record of what has been communicated by you in any given situation.
Save time, money and energy
Using document templates can not only save you time and ensure that your message is clear, but it also means that you don’t need to worry about storage. If every letter you send is the same, then you have an instant reference for any queries or concerns about the content. There’s no need to plough through a folder of documents to find the particular one a customer, client or supplier is talking about when you can pull up the exact text in a matter of moments.
AUTHOR BIO: Diyana Lobo has been writing about business admin, best practice in business communication and time saving strategies for companies of all sizes. For more information about any of the ideas in this article you can click here.