Diary Planner Buying Guide – How to Choose Your Perfect Diary Planner
We’ve made it easy for you to choose the perfect diary planner for yourself or for someone else.
Choosing the same diary planner for everyone in the office may seem the easiest and cheapest option when placing your order but may not offer the best solution for your business. Each employee has their own needs and preferences and a cookie-cutter approach won’t make everyone happy. By tailoring choices to individual or team needs you can reduce complaints, maximise diary usage and cut costs by only getting what they really need.
We’ve put together a buying guide to make it easy for you to choose the perfect diary planner:
DesignOften the first thing you look for when choosing a diary planner is the way it looks. Design has come a long way with everything from traditional through to fashionable now available to coordinate with your personal or corporate style. A diary’s design will also determine its durability and functionality.
- Colour: Standard corporate colours including black, blue and burgundy are professional and still favourites, or choose something brighter to liven up your workspace and inspire creativity.
- Material: Covers need to be hard-wearing, so a classic leather-look or linen cover will offer a luxurious, long-lasting material, or opt for hard cover or flexible PVC vinyl. Our glossary explains the various terms used to describe our diary covers.
- Pattern: Looking for something that expresses your personal style? You’ll find fashionable, traditional, classic and colourful covers to choose from.
- Binding: The binding of your diary planner will determine how you can use it. A casebound diary looks great sitting open or closed, while a wiro allows you the freedom to open your diary completely flat or even turn it back on itself to keep it open to a single page. Wiro binding can be concealed by the diary’s cover for a tidier look. If you need the flexibility to insert and remove pages you’ll prefer a refillable organiser.
- Enviro Credentials: Be earth-friendly with a diary made from recycled materials, FSC certified paper, post consumer waste or with carbon offsets. Refillable organisers also offer an environmentally-friendly option.
Diaries come in a range of sizes to suit your needs. Measurements are indicative values only and may describe page size rather than overall size.
Small- Slimline: As the name suggests, this handy diary is slimmer than others, usually about the size of an Android phone.
- Pocket: A tiny Pocket size is a great quick reference diary you can carry with you anywhere. Pocket sizes include A7 (74x105mm) and B7 (88x125mm) and other sizes in this range.
- A6: A6 is a quarter A4 (standard copy paper size) measuring in at 105x148mm. Bigger than a Pocket size but still small enough to carry around easily.
Mid-size- B6: A less common size midway between A6 and A5, measuring 125x176mm.
- A5: A5 is a good compact size diary, usually offering the same features as a full size diary scaled down. A5 is half the size of A4 (standard copy paper size), measuring in at 148x210mm. Large enough for all your appointments and small enough to travel with you.
- Quarto: Not quite a full size, Quarto offers enough page width and space without as much height as an A4. Measurements vary, but a good indication is 200x260mm).
Large- A4: A full size diary with pages the size of standard copy paper (210x297mm). Perfect for executive use, bookings, or to keep on your desk.
StyleThe style of your diary will depend on your scheduling needs and how bulky you want your diary to be. High volume appointment setters will need more space with at least one or 2 pages for each day, but factor in that this means more pages and a bulkier diary.
Occasional- Week to View: 7 days across a 2-page spread, great for at-a-glance weekly planning. Available in both portrait and landscape formats, generally with smaller sizes only in landscape, eg. slimline.
- 2 Days to Page: 2 days positioned on a single page (ie. 4 days to a 2-page spread), ideal for keeping your diary compact. Generally only available in portrait.
Frequent- 1 Day to Page: Most popular format with full pages assigned to each day, offering plenty of space for appointment setting. Generally only available in portrait.
- 2 Pages to Day: One day across a 2-page spread for high volume appointment setting like reservations and bookings or for sales reps. Generally only available in portrait.
Appointment TimesThe appointment time interval spacing of your diary is determined by your scheduling needs, with everything from no appointment times to high volume appointments times, and a variety of start and end times to keep you organised. Start and end times indicate the first and last time printed for each day, providing standard or extended business hours.
None- No times: Just what it says – no appointment times are listed, leaving more room for you to jot down daily to-dos, take notes or messages, or use however you want.
High- 15 Min: 15 minute intervals for the highest volume appointment setting.
Average- 30 Min: 30 minute intervals for average appointment setting.
Standard- 1 Hr: 1 hour intervals for standard appointment setting.
FeaturesThese are the little extras that can really come in handy. Want to call someone overseas or quickly find out when the school holidays occur? These are just a couple of examples of the features found in different diaries. Check out our glossary for a more extensive list of possible features to identify what best suits your needs.
Questions to ask when choosing a Diary Planner- How do you use your diary – for appointments, tasks or other?
- Do you schedule a lot of appointments, a few or none?
- Do you plan by the minute, hour, weekly or monthly?
- Will your diary stay at your desk or travel with you?
- Will you be carrying it often?
- Do you need it to lie open on your desk?
- Do you have a lot of space on your desk or counter for it?
- Is style important to you?
- Do you need to keep track of multiple people?
- Do you need to keep track of expenses?
- What is your budget?
Industry/Sector- Arts/Media: Small, occasional, standard appointment times
- Business: Mid-size, occasional, standard appointment times
- Education: Large, occasional, standard appointment times
- Education (student): Mid-size, occasional, standard appointment times
- Executive: Large, frequent, standard appointment times
- Finance: Large, occasional, average appointment times; with financial summaries
- Health: Large, frequent, high volume appointment times
- Hospitality: Large, frequent, high volume appointment times
- Industrial: Large, occasional, standard appointment times
- Real Estate: Mid-size, frequent, high volume appointment times
- Retail: Mid-size, frequent, no times
- Sales: Large, frequent, high volume appointment times
- Technology: Mid-size, occasional, standard appointment times