become a mobile office pro

Today’s Admin Needs to Become a Mobile Office Pro

Mobile has become the way in the daily operations of both our personal and business lives. It is increasingly important to know how to work productively from anywhere, anytime. It’s all in the apps.

Mobility is changing how we work and live; blending personal and professional lives, apps and tools needed to work well across different devices, and employees expect—and are expected—to work from anywhere.

Today, going mobile means having instant access to all documents, content and colleagues, and the tools to get any job done – anywhere, anytime. ~ Microsoft

Gone are the days of being tethered to a desktop computer to conduct day-to-day business tasks. Today’s Admin needs to be a MobileOfficePro™.

At minimum, a mobile user needs apps to perform key daily business tasks. Apps for file access, e-mail, calendar, password protection, word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, virtual meetings, news, weather and travel are examples of key productivity tools mobile devices should have installed.

Know Your Mobile Device

As a mobile user, become familiar with your device and device settings. Learn how to set a password in the event you lost your device, access Wi-Fi points, turn app notifications on and off, run software updates, know how much available storage you have left, how to uninstall apps you no longer need. You can do this and I don’t want you to ask your first grader or Grandchild to do it for you. I know it’s tempting.

If you are an iOS user (iPhone, iPad), tap the Settings icon to look at your settings. Learn more by using the guides. iPhone User Guide: and iPad User Guide:

Important Note: setup Find My iPhone so you can track down the physical location of a lost iOS device. Put that on your action list.

Now, on to a few key productivity mobile apps.

Cloud Storage

First and foremost, learn how to use a cloud service to backup and access your documents, photos and videos in a flash and I don’t mean from a flash drive! (I still recall the days of the floppy disk, when they were actually floppy.) Backup and store your files via a cloud service. Files will be accessible from any device you have installed the app on. An added benefit is the ability to share and collaborate on files of various types with others.

Note: if you are using an iOS device, at minimum, you should keep your device backed up using iCloud.

Note: Subscribe to Executive Secretary Magazine, and read my detailed article on Clearing Up The Fog Around Cloud Storage, in the January 2016 issue.

Three Popular Cloud Services

Microsoft OneDrive

OneDrive is tightly integrated with newer versions of Microsoft Office. If you want to stay all Microsoft and easily edit Microsoft documents from the cloud, OneDrive might be the one for you.

Microsoft’s paid version is OneDrive for Business, which contains more features for collaboration.

Google Drive

A free Google app which includes a suite of productivity tools similar to Microsoft Office. Create Docs (word processing), Sheets (spreadsheets) and Slides (presentations) from within your Google Drive account.

Note: Docs, Sheets, and Slides can be downloaded as individual apps from the Apple App Store or Google Play


Another powerful cloud service for uploading files of a variety of types. Share and collaborate on files. Free and paid versions are available.

Like any file storing system, you should create folders to organize your files. Folders can be shared.

Microsoft Office Mobile Apps

Microsoft Office is one of the most widely used suites of productivity tools in the business world. You don’t have to be at your computer to access, edit and create Office documents. Take advantage of the free mobile app versions of Microsoft Excel, OneNote, Outlook, PowerPoint, and Word. If you have an Office 365 subscription, the mobile versions have more features. Download each app from the Apple App Store for iOS devices and from Google Play for Android devices.

Microsoft Office mobile apps can be connected to multiple cloud services for file access. OneDrive, OneDrive for Business, Dropbox, Box, and Egnyte.

Additional Apps


  • GoToMeeting
  • Skype for Business


  • Adobe Acrobat Reader – a free app. View, annotate and sign PDFs. I use this app often from my mobile devices to view and sign contracts that are emailed to me in PDF form.


  • Flipboard, a customizable app that displays the news in a magazine style layout. Keep up with the latest news. Share with others using Flipboard’s social sharing features.

It’s time to take the steps needed to become a Mobile Office Pro.

webathon for admin assistants

Donna Gilliland Mobile Office ProDonna Gilliland, Founder of MOSTraining, Inc.

Donna Gilliland is an award-winning instructor in her field and the Founder of MOSTraining, Incorporated. Donna’s company provides workforce productivity training and consulting in Mobile, Office and Social Media technologies.

Donna’s training and speaking career spans over 25 years and she holds a wide range of technology certifications.

When Donna is not teaching or consulting she is writing about what she teaches via her blog at and as a writer for Executive Secretary Magazine.

Sign up for Donna’s newsletter at Follow her on Twitter @DonnaGilliland and on Facebook at

Join Donna’s Free Webathon on Administrative Professionals Day, April 27.


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18 thoughts on “Today’s Admin Needs to Become a Mobile Office Pro”

  1. Gloria von Gesslein

    I do work virtually regularly but am not up to speed on this level. I think because there are a lot of restrictions corporate has set on them and what we access outside of the firm. Even if they offer it, they still block certain aspects of them. They don’t function the way they are supposed to or get completely blocked. Its still good to know so I don’t look clueless about them and will try my hand at them in my personal business.

  2. As always, I learn something every time I am on your site, use your resources, read your books, and listen to the webinars! I work for a large technology company and we are expected to understand state-of-the-art technology. The Apps above are very useful. I cannot wait to see what the Conference in October teaches me! Thank you.

  3. These are great ideas. I never thought that I would be a little behind on the tech side. But there is so much out there that it is difficult to stay ahead of it all. Thanks for the reminder!

  4. For business we use Google Drive but we are limited as to what type of files we can save there because of security.

  5. Like Donna, I work for a local government (a city) and cannot save files to a cloud service like Dropbox. What we do have is called an ftp drive. Using this we can upload files to the ftp site and anyone can access the files. Outsiders can in-turn, upload files to the site that city employees can access. I use this when I have documents that are too large to email.

  6. Excellent post. I am excited to participate in the free webinars that are being offered, even if I have to get up at 5:00 am to participate in the earliest one..!!

  7. I would love to have mobile access to my documents, but since I work for a county government, I do not have remote access to them. However, I do have access to the county email, so if I know I may need to view or work with a particular document while offsite, I email it to myself in advance. It’s a crude method, but it serves the purpose. I do have Drop box and One drive accounts, but I am not allowed to send county documents to my personal cloud storage sites.

  8. I’m wondering if anyone has a good solution for viewing PowerPoints on iPhone/iPad’s? My manager only uses an iPad when she’s not in the office and can’t view PowerPoint presentations on it. I find myself converting them to pdf’s but I’m wondering if there is a better way…

    1. Google Slides! You can download that app on the ipad/phone and the slides can be created and edited within the document. The problem with the pdf is they can’t change their slides on the fly if they see a typo, etc.

    2. Julie,
      Microsoft offers a free version of PowerPoint, which you can download from the Apple Apps store directly from your iPad. The file you want to share and collaborate on will need to be in one of the file cloud storage locations that Office connects to, which includes OneDrive (Microsoft’s product), OneDrive for Business, Dropbox, Box Egnyte and Learnium. Standardize on of those services for team members to share files.

      I give presentations often and I like to use my iPad. I use the Mobile Microsoft PowerPoint app to show my slides.

      If you have further questions, feel free to write me at [email protected]. I am glad to assist.

      1. Thanks for the suggestion. The hurdle I have is that our company utilizes the “Good” App for mobile messaging and we need to open the ppts from Good. I think my hands are tied because of this. Which is probably as it should be in order to keep things secure.

  9. Thank you Office Dynamics. This month has been awesome! I’m new to the blogs and they certainly have been wonderful!! Thank you!!

  10. This may be helpful to you. I recently found out about this App called GroupMe. The App will allow you to create a group using cell numbers and email addresses. Once done, you can send one message to the entire group. It also has a calendar to set up events/meetings. You can check messages on cell phone, on the computer, or iPads.

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