Five Tips for Your Digitally Disorganized Administrator

Written by Miguel Guhlin

Care to learn some ways you can organize your digitally disorganized administrator? Whether your boss is a superintendent, a campus principal, or a collaborator in need of assistance, this blog entry can help her get organized with a few simple apps and suggestions!

Note: This blog entry focuses on apps that work on Android, iOS, and Windows devices.

Tip #1 — Organize Your Email

“Hundreds of emails flow into my supervisor’s inbox,” shared one secretary. “Even though she has a smartphone and could sort her email on the go, the built-in email app doesn’t get the job done.” Whether your supervisor uses MS Exchange, Hotmail, or Gmail, she now has access to some easy-to-use email clients that work quite well. Two good solutions include CloudMagic, which works on Android, iPhone, and iPad, or Readdle’s Spark (iOS only). Both make it easy to sort your messages into folders and/or forward to somewhere else, like OneNote, since they include built-in support.

Tip #2 — Collect and Organize Critical Documents

“Every day,” shares one assistant, “my supervisor and I receive a large quantity of documents, some of which are digital, others that are mostly paper. Instead of having to wait until she gets back to the office for me to digitize them, what could my supervisor do to scan the documents?” Whether it’s business cards, invoices, permission slips, or other school paperwork, you can easily capture these documents with an app like Readdle‘s Scanner Pro or Microsoft OfficeLens and save them to the cloud (e.g. Dropbox, Google Drive, or OneNote). Text in the images is searchable, and you can also add some keywords or tags.

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Tip #3 — Check That Off Your List!

“What I like to do every morning is make a checklist for what she will be doing each day.” The assistant held up her phone and waved it in front of me with a smile. “When she checks the list, there’s a list of things to do by location.” With Google Keep, you can put all your list items for your supervisor online, inserting checkboxes in front of each item. As she finishes them throughout the day, she can simply tap on the checkbox to place a checkmark. And Google Keep lets you set up location-based reminders, so you can help your supervisor be more efficient as she goes from one campus to another.

Tip #4 — Track Your Meetings

“At the end of the day, my boss comes back with a stack of papers from all the meetings she has been to. I wish there was a way for her to organize them as she gets them so it makes more sense.” Show her how to get into OneNote 2016 and tap on the microphone to record the entire meeting. In addition to typing notes with the audio recording of the meeting synchronized to the written notes, the administrator can snap pictures of meeting paper materials, including business cards, meeting agendas, and handouts, for inclusion in the meeting notebook.

And, finally, consider how you will protect the privacy of sensitive data with this last tip.

Tip #5 — Protect Confidential Information

With OneNote, you are able to “protect” sensitive notes that may contain confidential information. Encryption once was difficult to do, but now it is inexcusable to have sensitive data not protected. In OneNote 2016, your supervisor can right-click a section and choose “Password Protect.” This allows you or your supervisor to add a password and that section cannot be opened without the password. Some caveats: 1) You might not be able to view password-protected sections on all devices; 2) Audio and video recordings are not protected in the OneNote 2007 section format; and 3) To search password-protected sections, you need to unlock them first.