Directions/Training on Your PC Made Simple

Need to give directions?

Have you ever worked in an office or team environment and had to train or re-train a co-worker? If you have, you know it can be very time consuming. The most common solution to address this is to have a knowledge database with training material. The catch-22 to deploying this solution is that it takes almost as much time, if not more, to create the material needed to train someone on common office tasks. Making PowerPoint slides, taking screenshots, cropping, editing, making videos, requires an enormous amount of time and energy that could be better put to use for the company, am I right? Plus, you have to spend additional time doing live training exercises to ensure the trainee is able to accomplish their required tasks, taking time away from you to do what you need to do to achieve greater levels of success for the company.

You can do it!

What if it were easier? What if you could create a file illustrating how to accomplish a task nearly as quickly as doing that task yourself?


Good news, there is! Microsoft has a program built into its very own operating system called "Steps Recorder". You don't have to download it, it's already on your machine.

I have personally used this software to provide training, advice, and several how-to guides for colleagues and clients. It's simple and easy to use.

Let’s take it for a spin…

Click on the Windows button on the bottom left-hand corner of your desktop, or press the Windows key on your keyboard, and type "step". You should see a program at the very top of the menu called "Steps Recorder". Open it up and take it for a spin. When it opens, you will see a small thin dialog box open on your screen. Take a look at the red circle next to the words "Start Record". Click it! You are now recording every action you make on your screen. Open up some applications or browsers, click around for a bit.


Be advised, Steps Recorder does not record keystrokes. It does, however record where you click on the screen and takes a screenshot simultaneously!

Why is this important? Go back to the dialog box for Steps

Recorder and click "Stop Recording" and behold the magic!


What you should see next is a visual representation of what the screen looked like when you clicked to open those applications and/or browsers. Additionally, under each screenshot you will see a brief detailed description of what you clicked and what application you clicked in.

But wait, it gets better! Scroll to the bottom of the Steps Recorder window. All of the

details are compiled together, making a convenient step-by-step list.

Now you can save the file to your machine or company training folder. The file saves as a zip folder. If you open, or extract the contents of the folder you will see your recording as a .mht file. How do you open it? Double click on it and an internet browser should appear on your screen with your presentation.

How easy was that? Try it out doing a common work task or troubleshooting technique you use frequently in the office. You will be amazed at how much time you save for yourself and others.

Dan Ogle

Panacea Solutions, LLC.


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