Increasing productivity with Excel

A major problem for people trying to get work done is staying productive. Businesses use analytics to function efficiently, but individuals never seem to use them. Why not make your own metrics on Excel to keep track of your life and increase motivation? I find myself getting excited when an item can be removed from a to-do list. Now, you can not only watch the list get smaller, but you can see how many items you are completing per week, how far along you are on big projects, and so much more! The best part about using Excel to track your own work efficiency is to be able to choose the metrics that work best with your life, and watch your productivity soar.

Step 1: Prioritize your goals

Don’t waste time stressing out over to-do items that you don’t really have time for anyway. Prioritize the tasks that are the most important to your goals, and make sure your goals align with your values. Is your top priority to find a new job? Then make sure to assign that as your number one goal.

Step 2: Turn high priorities into metrics

Identify your own meaningful metrics. What numbers would give you the information needed to see how far you are from your goals? If you are trying to find a job, your related values could be number of jobs applied to, or hours of networking completed. Common items to track for any goal would be projects due per week, hours already spent per project, number of times a task was completed, or anything else you would like to do.

Step 3: Get productive!

After the formulas are in place, compete against yourself to achieve top results. If you completed 5 tasks of a certain type last week, try and finish 6 the next week. Setting goals and going past them is the core of productivity. And remember to reward yourself when you achieve those goals J

Maintaining productivity:

Setting aside time regularly to maintain the guide will give you back time in the end, through increased focus during projects. If you spend more time on productivity, you can be more productive! But don’t procrastinate by over-engineering your Excel file. Keep it simple, but functional; motivate yourself in the best way possible.


This was merely an overview of this process! If you would like help using Excel to maximize your life productivity, reach out to me, and I can give tips and tricks, including specifics for your experience:

Caitlin Murphy,