14 Helpful Tips for New Year Digital Decluttering

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Living in today’s digital age means our jobs are intricately tied to a myriad of information stored across various Microsoft 365 products and solutions. From emails to documents and apps, our digital landscape can quickly become overwhelming. As we embark on a new year, it’s an ideal moment for a digital refresh within your technology suite. An organised and efficient digital environment not only boosts productivity but also alleviates stress. Here are some practical tips, specifically tailored to Microsoft 365, to help you declutter your digital space:

1. Conduct a Digital Inventory

Begin by assessing your devices, accounts, and digital files within the Microsoft 365 ecosystem. Knowing what you have is the crucial first step toward effective decluttering. This also includes your password manager, SharePoint files and retention policies; knowing what needs to be kept for relevant compliance policies.

2. Prioritise Your Most-Used Digital Spaces

Start with the digital spaces you frequently use, such as Outlook for email, OneDrive for cloud storage, and Teams for collaboration. Clearing clutter in these areas can have an immediate positive impact on your daily digital experiences.

3. Organise Your Files and Folders

Create a systematic file organisation structure within OneDrive or SharePoint. Utilise clear, intuitive folder names and categorise files logically. Use colour coding to enhance visual organisation. Don’t forget to back up important data to the cloud.

4. Declutter Your Outlook Inbox

Tackle your Outlook inbox by unsubscribing from newsletters, using filters and rules to sort emails, and archiving or deleting old or irrelevant messages. Consider leveraging Focused Inbox for a more organised email experience.

5. Streamline Your Social Spaces

Microsoft 365 includes social spaces like Teams Chats. Declutter by deleting or deactivating unused accounts, unfollowing unnecessary profiles, and clearing message inboxes within these environments. (If you still have active users in your Admin portal – consider the security risks of having these users still active)

6. Review Your Subscriptions

Explore and review your Microsoft 365 subscriptions, such as additional OneDrive storage or premium features. Cancel any subscriptions that are no longer necessary (due to Microsoft’s extensive product suite), saving both clutter and costs. Or upgrade if your needs have changed. 

7. Evaluate and Remove Unused Apps

Unused apps can clutter your device. Review and remove the ones you seldom use, optimising device performance for your PC. Using Microsoft products like Intune, allows businesses to have more oversight over what apps users are able to download, or able to remove any that are not relevant. If this sounds like something you are not utilising – reach out!

8. Clear Your Desktop and Downloads Folder

A cluttered desktop and downloads folder can hamper productivity. Organise files into appropriate folders and utilise OneDrive or SharePoint for cloud storage to keep your digital workspace clean and accessible.

9. Secure Your Digital Identity

Review and update passwords for security in your accounts. Leverage Microsoft’s security features and consider using a reputable password manager to enhance your online security.

10. Reflect on Your Digital Habits

Identify time-wasting activities and set boundaries for irrelevant apps or websites. Focus on meaningful online interactions to make your digital experience intentional.

11. Schedule Digital Detox Days

Designate specific days for a digital detox. Disconnect, engage in physical activities, and take leave away from your desk.

12. Customise Notifications

Customise notifications allowing only essential alerts. Minimise distractions and enhance focus for a more streamlined word day.

13. Utilise Microsoft 365 Productivity Tools

Leverage productivity apps and tools within Microsoft 365, such as Microsoft Teams, OneNote, and Planner. These tools can streamline tasks and enhance efficiency.

14. Establish Regular Maintenance Sessions

Recognise that digital decluttering  is an ongoing process. Schedule regular maintenance sessions to keep your digital life organised and clutter-free.

Here’s to embracing the new year with a clean, focused IT environment. If you’re looking for support in managing your data, storage, or have questions, feel free to reach out!

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In today’s digital age, small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are often caught in the whirlwind of app overload, constantly switching between tools and platforms