Staying organized at work can sometimes seem like a full-time job in and of itself. We all know the frustration of having a crucial piece of information go missing just when we need it most, or losing entire documents without a trace. In today’s digital age, no amount of organization can help you find everything (sometimes documents just vanish like socks in the dryer), but being organized can save you a significant amount of time and keep you from hunting frantically for misplaced items. Here are 4 great ways to stay organized at work.

Ways to stay organized at work

Stay on Top of the Crazy: 4 Ways to Stay Organized at Work

For every minute spent in organizing, an hour is earned.

– Benjamin Franklin

Schedule your day

While there are always going to be distractions and interruptions, having a schedule that you stick to every day will ensure that everything important generally gets done, so that you make the most out of your time. Every moment you spend wondering what to do next is a moment you didn’t spend doing something productive. Scheduling will also help you remember to take much-needed breaks.

Don’t try to multitask

It is a common misconception that multitaskers get more done. When you sit down to accomplish a task, it generally takes a few minutes of fumbling to get “in the zone” and start cranking out some good work. Every distraction will pull you out of your “zone” and force you to refocus once again. When you block out time to accomplish a specific task, you may want to put your phone’s ringer on silent (if possible), and maybe even listen to soothing music through headphones. If you can’t silence your phone entirely, then only stop to respond to anything truly urgent.

Use digital tools to help manage time and increase productivity

There are a number of great products available that work with your devices, and even other software programs to help you do everything from managing your own time to booking conference rooms. Flat Tangerine is a personal productivity app that helps you maximize your time, and programs like Add-On can work with Microsoft Outlook to maximize office productivity.

Schedule time every day to manage clutter

Clutter has been scientifically proven to have an adverse effect on both your mental health and productivity. “Clutter” can range from too many documents on your desktop home screen, to overflowing drawers, to stacks of files and paperwork sitting on your desk. Dealing with clutter is a never-ending task, so make sure to schedule a few minutes every day to cut down on it and manage it so it doesn’t get out of control.

Staying organized at work can really help you stay focused and get more done. It is well worth the investment over time. Just be sure to take the time to find the organization solutions that work best for you.