School Business Affairs January 2019

asbointl.org SCHOOL BUSINESS AFFAIRS | JANUARY 2019 29 Take the time to save some time with these productivity tools. 21st-Century Tools for Busy Professionals By Nan Wodarz, Ed.D. management briefcase U nless you have a significant amount of free time, it’s challeng- ing to remain current with the frequent availability of new online tools and resources. Yet, some of those tools have the potential to streamline your work and are worth taking the time to explore. The online tools described here are free to use. Some offer options to upgrade, but for most of the tasks we encounter, the upgrade is not necessary. Send Content – WeTransfer allows you to transfer up to 2 GB of data free of charge. This is a great way to send large files to other people. www.wetransfer.com Schedule Meetings – Doodle Poll helps you coordinate people’s schedules, especially if a number of your colleagues are outside your organization’s domain. The site allows you to identify date and time options and sends an email asking people to indicate their avail- ability. It takes no time to set up and simpli- fies the scheduling process. www.doodle.com Schedule Meetings Across Time Zones – Although your team might work in a single time zone, there will come a day when you need to schedule meetings across time zones and will have to figure in daylight savings time—all of which can be confusing. A web- site simplifies this task and can be used for locations anywhere in the world. www.time- anddate.com/worldclock/meeting.html Manage Newsletters – Unroll.me is a free service that bundles all your newsletters into a single email. This streamlines the reading process, speeds up the management of your email, and allows you to find articles easily. https://unroll.me Save Content – Pocket is an add-on for your web browser that allows you to place and store information in your “pocket.” It is a bit like a reading list, but has additional features including the ability to send email to your pocket. www.getpocket.com Record Calls – Skype is widely used for video conferencing. However, it has some limitations, one of which is the ability to record calls. A free application solves that problem: Skype video call recorder. www. dvdvideosoft.com/products/dvd/Free-Video- Call-Recorder-for-Skype.htm Video Conference Calling – Join.me is a simple video and audio-conferencing plat- form. It is particularly easy to use because the software is accessed online and does not require complex configuration . www.join. me Audio Conference Calling – Many times we need to schedule conference calls and do not want to pay a small fortune to connect our colleagues. Voice over IP has solved this problem for us. You can set up a free confer- ence call at www.freeconferencecall.com . Convert PDFs – Countless times I have had to convert .pdf documents and have labored to find the best sites. For MS Word, the best free site is https://pdf2doc.com and for MS Excel, it is www.pdftoexcel.com . Create Word Art – An automated word cloud generator can be handy when creating documents, reports, and websites. The most flexible tool that also allows you to pur- chase merchandise with the art is www.wor- dart.com , but it has a nominal fee. A free site that works well but has fewer features is www.wordclouds.com . Share YouTube – There is a YouTube video that you want to play for a presenta- tion, but Internet connectivity is not reliable. The best option is to download the video to your computer and eliminate the stress of accessing the Internet. There are many free options for this, but the one I like the most is YouTube Downloader. https://youtube- downloader.com . Enhance Outlook – Boomerang adds many useful features to Outlook. It lets you schedule an email to send at a later date and ROBERT KNESCHKE/STOCK.ADOBE.COM

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