PDF, which stands for portable document format, is one of the most commonly used file types at present. Besides the ease of creation, the popularity of PDF can be explained by the fact a file manages to preserve its original formatting. Therefore, it’s more shareable and can be viewed on any device. There are trillions of PDF documents in the world and the number keeps on rising every day. Businesses, governments, and individual users pass and send information with the help of PDF files. Interestingly, you can add multiple PDFs for viewing by link.

If you work with electronic documents all the time, you should make changes in your habits. Chances are that you aren’t effectively leveraging PDFs and, by continuing to rely on outdated habits, you risk experiencing productivity loss. Keep on reading to discover the best ways to work with PDF files. Increase productivity and become your best self.

Edit a PDF by converting it to Word

While the PDF format is the best option for viewing and sharing documents, Word is the preferred option for editing and making changes to work in progress. If you already have a recent version of Microsoft Word, you can easily edit PDF documents. Unfortunately, some information such as tables with cell spacing or form fill-in features will get lost in translation, so as to speak. Anyhow, if you have a PDF that needs to be edited or updated, convert it to Word. It’s no longer necessary to retype the content on a new, blank document.

Open the Microsoft Word program and click File. Next, click Open and select the PDF file you’re interested in. Almost instantly, you’ll receive a message saying that Word will convert your PDF to an editable document. Finally, click Ok, make the necessary changes, and save the file back to PDF format. Equally, you can upload your file to Google Docs. The PDF file is converted to a Google Doc file, with editable text. The new document will still have the .pdf extension, but the icon is nothing like that of a PDF file.

Better yet, use a PDF editor

Adobe Acrobat is the most renowned PDF editor, but it’s not the only one out there. At present, there are numerous applications that have taken away its market dominance. With such a tool, you can easily edit PDF files. You can do more than changing a few words or swipe an old image for a new one. You receive unlimited access to the text and images. You can combine several PDFs into one, break a document apart, split PDF, and much more. The most important features to consider when choosing a PDF editor are:

  • Ease of use
  • Ability to create and edit PDFs
  • Scan and OCR
  • Security features

At one point, you’ll need to talk to someone. Make sure your PDF editor comes with customer care and support.

Add a signature to a PDF

More often than not, when working online, it’s necessary to sign a document. By signing a document, you attest to its contents. In other words, you approve of it. Forget about the old-school method, in which you have to print the PDF file, sign it, rescan it, and send it back. There’s a better way to handle the situation. Save the trees (and your time) by adding your signature electronically. In case you didn’t know, there’s a difference between an electronic signature and a digital signature. An electronic signature is the direct equivalent of your handwritten signature. A digital signature, on the other hand, is cryptographically secure and the receiver needs a security key to view its contents.

While Adobe Acrobat isn’t the most affordable software program, it’s feature-packed, meaning that it has great support for signing PDF documents. Find the Fill & Sign button and select Add Signature. If you need to add other information, you can use the other buttons on the toolbar. Initiate and manage signature workflows. The program allows you to sign, send, oversee, and manage signature workflows from desktop or mobile devices. You can share documents with different people and assign a different color to each signature. This way, you can avoid confusion and error. It’s important to make sure that the Retain Original Color for Signature option is unchecked.

Merge PDFs or eliminate pages from a PDF

Combining multiple PDF documents into a single one is a great productivity hack. You don’t have to send over several files over to the accounting department. Most importantly, you don’t need to struggle too much to track down or resend files if you lose sight of them. Using the old-fashioned workaround (printing the documents on paper, rearranging them, and later scanning them to send them back) isn’t smart or environmentally friendly. There’s a special program you can use in this sense. You can make insightful presentations to impress your colleagues, managers, and clients.

When you upload or attach several files, issues may arise. As you know, email services and social networking sites have certain limits; some of them, but still. Merging several PDFs is the ultimate solution. At times, it’s necessary to remove information from a document. For instance, you might need to eliminate an outdated section from an employee handbook. What do you do then? Quite simple, actually. With a document management tool, you can modify PDFs in a timely manner. Find the pages and select Delete. Discard the pages that you don’t really need.

The bottom line is that there are several ways to work with PDFs to your advantage. Even if others won’t be impressed by your new skills, don’t let that stop you from giving it your best. The more productive you are, the more you spend on manual tasks. Implementing the right methods and using them perfectly goes a long way in driving productivity. Treat your time as a commodity and you’ll have the chance to leverage it when the chips are down. Use those minutes to do something that lifts your mood.