Hunting for functions is probably the biggest time waster in word processing. Knowing keyboard shortcuts for the most common functions is a huge time saver (like ctrl + S to save a document), making your own shortcuts can help too. A custom Ribbon tab is a great alternative for those who are more visually oriented, rather than memorizing shortcuts.
In the 365 version of Word (or 2016) it’s possible for both Windows and Mac users to create custom tabs on the Ribbon, and populate those with the functions they need most. Here’s one I started building; it contains the functions I search for the most. You could build one for each project or client.
Create a New Tab
To create a custom tab on the Ribbon, open Word’s preferences, then select the Ribbon & Toolbar icon. The Mac version is shown next. Follow this link to Windows instructions.
From here, click the plus sign below the right-hand list to add a tab to the Ribbon (the purple arrow in the next figure).
Click on the New Tab (custom) in the list to select it, then click the gear icon below the list to rename the tab. The new tab is saved to the Normal template, so it is available in all documents.
To add functions to the tab, click on the New Group (custom) item in the list to select it (click the down arrow on the name of your new tab to reveal this). Scroll through the list of functions on the left and click on the one you want to add. Then click the right arrow between the two lists to add the selected function to the new tab (see the green arrow in the figure below). You can even add your custom macros, renaming them so they make sense and fit on the tab, but you can’t seem to give them a distinctive icon.
To remove functions/icons from a tab, select the function in the list on the right, then click the left arrow between the two lists. To remove a whole tab, click on its name in the right-hand list, then click the minus sign below the list.
To reorder functions on the tab, simply click and drag in the list on the right. Similarly, to reorder the tabs, click on a tab’s name in the right-hand list and drag into the order you want.