Word can be used in many different ways and can make business documents look very professional; all it requires is a little creativity and know how. Hopefully we’ll cover a little of the know-how with this blog.
Many people understand the basics of using Word and can create letters to send out as and when they’re required, but that is often the extent of their knowledge. Word can do a whole lot more….
Quite often we come across people saying they need to create a PDF for a poster or a flyer and don’t know where to start with this. You can do this in Word.
Anyone can do this, for example estate agents might want to create a PDF document on available properties that they can email over or post out to prospective clients, a school might want to create a flyer/poster for their upcoming Christmas/Easter/Summer fairs – they all want a way to do this where the poster/flyer can’t be amended digitally (easily) by the people receiving it.
Saving the file as a PDF often reduce the size of the document (KB) as well; this can be a great way to save people’s inboxes from large attachments.
Once you’ve created your document/flyer you go to Save As and from the drop-down options available, pick PDF. It’s as simple as that. The document will quite simply be created as a PDF; you always have the Word version as well, so you can amend the document as and when necessary and then just save the file as a PDF again.
This is something we use a lot for mini leaflets/guides.
How Word is used in business
As mentioned above, Word can be used to create PDFs, something a lot of businesses will use. A PDF is a nicer way to receive a staff newsletter for example, it’s easier on the eye than a Word document more often then not, and again it can’t be amended too easily unless you have the right software to do so.
You can use a Word template to create many different things, examples: menus, trifold leaflets, surveys/questionnaires, invitations, vouchers, lists and so much more….
Once you’ve designed your artwork you can then save as a PDF, this will reduce the size of the file – ideal if you’re emailing out to people.
If you store all your contacts in an Excel spreadsheet, you can import the data for you to send them letters etc. by post. Word will let you pick which fields you want to include in the letter, this can also be done with creating mailing labels. By doing a mail merge you can again import the contact details from a spreadsheet and select which fields you want to include, along with how they sit on the label, this is great for sending out Christmas cards or special offer postcards to your clients/customers.
Word is also great for creating tables of information or lists, for example, we recently created a 5 column A4 table that listed titles and authors of all the books we want to sell, it’s a great way to organise a list and make it easier on the eye to read, especially as you can also add colour to certain fields or make table headers bold or italic to show they’re different to the rest of the information.
You can also choose to use some of the simple formatting tools, such as, aligning the text to the left, right or centralised. Another option is to justify the text, meaning it will spread the letters/words to within the side margins so that there are no uneven edges on the right hand side, this can often make some words look extremely big as opposed to others and although it can look nice on a page to have everything aligned, it’s not always easy to read.
Features of Word
One of the features of Word is the ability to highlight text; this is great for businesses that need to point out certain things in documentation they’re sending out to businesses or individuals. If you’re emailing the document out and want people to action certain points or make comments on the document as a whole, Word also allows for this, you can track any changes that have been made.
One of our favourite features is Format Painter; this little button saves us a lot of time. A lot of people we come across only click on it once to do a task and then again to repeat the same task. If you have formatting you want to copy to various sentences, words or paragraphs in your document – click the button twice, this will allow you to keep adding the same format to multiple things, saving you a lot of time and the good thing is this option isn’t just a feature of Word…
Another of our favourites is Find or Find and Replace. This is another of those features that has saved us a lot of time over the years and again is not just a feature of Word. If you have a large document and you need to find a certain word somewhere in it, by using this feature Word will take you directly to each mention of that word, phrase or number. Then you can amend as necessary.
If you are wanting to replace a certain word, phrase or number throughout the document then this is where Find and Replace comes in, by choosing this option you are telling Word that you want to find a word, for example dollar and the you tell it you want to replace that word with, for example pound. Word will then make all the changes for you and also tell you how many occurrences it found and changed. The shortcut to this feature is CTRL+F and is well worth remembering.
There are many other features and we could go on forever discussing them all.
Hopefully you’ll find some of these features useful if you don’t already use them. Let us know the ones you use on Twitter