Working as a professional organizer offers me the privilege of consulting with exceptional people and testing out very cool organizing products. (I’ll bet there are even some people in my industry who have joined the profession solely to support their organizing products habit!) Recently I attended my professional association’s 25th annual conference and organizing expo.
As a solopreneur, this annual 3-day conference is a treat for me since it combines educational workshops, peer networking (and lots of laughs), industry association updates, and a chance to sample and view products from vendors who support the organizing industry. Since I love helping clients with paper organizing projects (and I’m a sucker for new office productivity tools), I’ve selected a few products in this area to highlight from the vendor expo. If these products appeal to you, be sure to check out the related website link to learn more.
Staples® Better Binder with Removable FileRings™
Hands-down, this has to be my favorite new paper-management product on the market. I already love the Better Binder since it’s so durable (those of you with school-age kids will relate). What’s great about this new version is the removable file ring strip – it unclasps with quick release pins that serve double duty as a hanging file! Bound papers or 3-ring sleeves used for a specific project, class or client are immediately removable for file drawer storage, and the strip has a blank label already attached for easy file labeling and reference. Use one binder to interchange other FileRing™ strips depending on the project at hand. No more wall of binders on the bookshelf gathering dust, as this feature aids in keeping bound content stored with other related file papers and minimizes bulk. Currently the removable strip is available in a 1-inch binder and sold online.
The M by Staples™ Arc Customizable Notebook System
Although I keep an online and mobile calendar, the Arc notebook is my go-to planner system for tracking to-do reminders and projects. What I love about the notebook is that it is an affordable, versatile planner that evolves with how you think and need it to work. Blank pages are removable for easy rearrangement of subject-specific notes and the Arc product line offers a few really useful add-on accessories. These include tab dividers, pocket dividers, task pads, 4 types of refill paper (graph, project planner, narrow rule and To-Do), and page flags. Also the disc-style binding is interchangeable with different sizes to expand as you need, and a punch is available to insert non-Arc paper into the system to corral all your notes on a given project.
Planner Pad® Organizer (Planner & Calendar)
The Planner Pad is a very effective calendar and time management system. This spiral or loose-leaf bound planner and is suited for people who track a lot of projects and tasks, are devotees to a paper system and who often have difficulty prioritizing and completing tasks. The unique funnel layout of the calendar allows for a “brain dump” of everything that has your attention each week, prioritizing what needs to get done when, and scheduling for tasks and events in a daily appointment section. The planner is available in a personal or executive size and the company offers a 6-month money back guarantee.
Smead® Erasable File Tabs and File Folders
There are lots of new eco-friendly filing supplies available from Smead®, including erasable hanging folders, file folders, file folder labels and hanging folder tabs. The erasable options offer greater versatility and seem more durable than similar supply-store products. A simple white eraser is all you need to remove a permanent marker label off the surface. The SuperTab® folders and labels offer a 90% larger surface area for labeling, a helpful improvement.
Smead® Organized Up™ Durable Folders with Vertical File Case
I like to advise clients that keeping papers vertical is a helpful visual cue for finding things when you need them. The new Organized Up™ vertical file folders are a great option for this purpose. The durable brightly-colored folders are sealed on two sides so your papers don’t fall out, and the dual tab option allows you to store on a desktop (vertically) or in a file drawer or bookshelf case (horizontally). A companion desktop file case is available for storage or easy portability.
Ampad® Shot Note® Memo Pad
This new memo pad combines technology with traditional note-taking. Using your iPhone, download the Shot Note® app from the iTunes store to scan and electronically share or store handwritten notes (meetings, classwork, personal). The Shot Note® pads are designed with page-marker technology to allow the phone app to scan information for a high-quality image. Scanned files are also searchable, so choose the memo pad best suited for your needs and try digitizing your personal notes.
Give a few of these products a try in your office and let me know if you like them as much as I do! Is there a new productivity tool or filing product that you love? Please share, I’m always happy to try something new!
P.S. Here’s a shot of a few of us organizers taking advantage of the conference Expo photo booth, sponsored by Snaparazzi. I’m never far from the fun people (and you can find me in the upper left)!