The pandemic has taught us many things. One of them is that remote work isn’t a new fad. It’s a game changer that proves professionals can still be engaged and get their jobs done, even from their living room. Still, if you’re new to this way of working, you might encounter a few challenges, which is why I’m here to share my tips on organizing your browser and desktop. At WebDevStudios (WDS), I work on a MacBook. So, for the purpose of this article, that will be the focus.
There is an increasing number of people, who have never worked remotely, taking on remote work jobs. I am one of them.
I never worked remotely until I joined WDS a couple of months ago. For me, there was quite the learning curve. Once I learned how to better configure and organize my web browser, I began to find my efficiency skyrocket!
Look, we have all been there—whether you are new to remote work or not. You get on a call, share your screen, and someone mentions that you have a lot of tabs open in your browser. But, you need all of those tabs open to reference and use throughout your day for your job.
There are several different ways to help you organize your browser. A few that I will help you with are pinning tabs, grouping tabs, and using your bookmarks bar. These three ways will help you stay organized so that you can have a more productive day.
Organizing browsers is one way to help you stay focused and be able to easily find the things you need throughout the day. Although this article will focus on MacOS, most web browsers work exactly the same across most operating systems. Windows and Linux users shouldn’t have any trouble putting these same tips into practice.
Why Organizing Your Browser Is Important
The one thing that I have noticed is that, oftentimes, you are used to what you use on your home computer and when you began working from home you continue to use those exact same processes. You get in the groove of working and, before you know it, you have exhausted your computer and things begin to run slow or the fan is almost constantly running.
There are a few things that I am going to talk about that will help you fix those problems. I will address:
- Pinning browser tabs
- Creating bookmarks on your bookmark bar
- Using the multiple desktop features that you have on your computer
There are a few other features that I will add in here as well, such as using command + tab feature and the command + space bar. Those two will also help you to not have to click around all of the time on your computer.
Let’s take a look at placing items in your bookmarks bar. It may seem that if you use the bookmarks bar that you will not be able to see what you have bookmarked. Don’t worry, you will be able to see each and every item.
Here is what you do: open the site you are wanting to put into the bookmarks bar. Once it is open, click on the lock symbol in the address bar, drag below the address bar to the bookmarks bar, and drop it right there. Now you have the option to right click on the item you just dropped and change the name of it, delete the name, or leave it as it.
Pinning and Grouping Tabs
The next thing that you can do to help you get your browser organized is to pin and group pinned tabs. When I learned about grouping tabs, I think it changed my life! It does help me to organize my browser so much more.
So, the first thing that you want to do to pin tabs is right click the tab and select ‘pin tab.’ Once you have done that, the tab will move to the left of the browser and remain there until you unpin the tab. This is also helpful to have when, if for some reason, your computer restarts or shuts down. The browser will restore these pinned tabs upon the restart of your browser.
If you find that you have too many tabs pinned to the top of your browser, you could use the feature to group the pinned tabs together. To do this, you will need to make sure that the tabs you want to group are next to each other in order to group them together. Once you have the tabs next to each other you will click into the first tab, hold the shift key down and click on the furthest tab that you want in this group.
When you have clicked the last tab, you will right click to group the tabs. After doing that, right click on the tabs, and you can name that tab. You can also change the color of these grouped tabs by right clicking and selecting the color you wish to use. I have found this to be so satisfying for me. Having things color coded and easy to find is something I love. Currently, I am up to four grouped and color coded tabs.
Each one of these tips will help you out to become more productive with remote work. You can also use these steps to make your personal browser more organized, as well. Not only that, but these efforts will help your computer in the long run, too.
If you have noticed that your computer runs a little slow or the fan kicks on and runs a lot, one culprit could be that you have so many tabs open in your browser. I have noticed that if I have several tabs open, my computer’s fan will kick on and run. Once I have closed tabs, the fan will stop running so high.
There are a few other things that you will be able to use that will help you organize your workspace on your MacBook. Did you know that there is a feature where you can use different desktops on your computer?
If you look at the top of your keyboard, find the F3 button and press it. The screen will move, and there will be a plus sign at the top right hand of your screen that you can click on and add another desktop.
I have one for personal use and the other for work use. I also have two browsers so I can keep my personal and my work stuff separate. This is a useful tip that can keep you productive while you are at work with your personal desktop not giving you distractions.
Taking Screenshots and Keyboard Shortcuts
Another helpful tool is using SHIFT + CMD + 4 (Mac). You can use this to screenshot items from your computer to share with anyone you are working with on projects.
There are a couple of keyboard shortcuts that you can use to help you stay on track with work. If you use the CMD + TAB feature, you can bring up all the currently open apps you are using. As long as you are holding the CMD key down, you can TAB over to the app that you are looking to switch. This feature is super helpful, if you have a small screen and can only have one item taking up the entire screen.
The other feature that I use is CMD + SPACE. This pulls up a search bar that will allow you to type in the name of an app or program that you are wanting to open. This feature and the one above are super helpful when you are needing to get to something quickly.
I’ll close by saying that I am by no means an expert, but I think these tips coming from a new remote worker to another will help out tremendously. I hope you found this information helpful. Organizing your browser and desktop helps you streamline your organization and gives you room to navigate this new stage of your career. Working from home can be challenging sometimes, but it does not have to be disorganized. Now go out and rule your workspace!
Work Remotely at WebDevStudios
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