How much time does it really take to manage your academic paper?

Knowing how to write an essay fast isn’t just about meeting deadlines – it’s about reducing the amount of time you spend researching, combing through sources, and repeatedly writing citations. Although it doesn’t help seeing the deadline creep up, especially if you’ve barely made a dent in your work!

While each academic paper varies greatly in time needed to complete, it can take anywhere from 10 days to 10 months to complete all the research process steps required. The time depends on the complexity of the topic, availability of information, research methods, your writing skills, and your overall organization of the process.

More often than not, completing an academic research paper will take more time than you expected. Don’t wait until you’ve reached the point of no return, wishing you’d used better time management skills earlier on.

The typical research process steps are as follows, with certain steps taking longer or shorter depending on how well you manage your time:

Research Process Steps Time Management Factors
Formulate your question Your research may start with a general idea or specific question, both of which will take time to narrow down.
Get background information You’ll have to read about your topic on multiple sources, including websites, encyclopedias, and online journals.
Focus and refine your search topic You must refine your topic, whether to broaden or narrow your focus and coverage.
Consider your resource options and research tools Secure the right resources and research tools. There are a multitude of tools available for you to use, but they are not equal in providing an efficient way to write your research paper.
Select the appropriate tool and begin Once you’ve selected the best tool for your research,begin your research proper. This may take a large portion of your time, as you’ll need to hunt for specific and relevant information.
Use the tool and troubleshoot problems or barriers You will encounter problems and hindrances along the way, many of which will take time to resolve before moving forward with your research.
Locate and gather your materials Move beyond the books you have on-hand and the internet to secure materials and conduct surveys for the information you need.
Analyze and evaluate your materials Analyze and carefully select the data you’ve collected. The more research you’ve done, the longer this will take.
Organize, write, and review your paper Begin writing the paper, combining all the research data into a cohesive piece. Depending on your writing skills and the editing services you use, this may take longer than what you’d expect.
Compose your bibliography Lastly, you’ll need to properly cite and list down your references according to the required format of your publisher.

These research process steps each may have unforeseen challenges within each stage. 

Additionally, many researchers also have to juggle a lot of deliverables that aren’t directly related to actual research work. These include tasks such as:

  • Doing peer review work
  • Admin and logistics tasks
  • Being a professor in a university
  • Working on other publications, presentations, and proposal submissions

With all these responsibilities, you need to have good time management skills and make the most out of the time allotted to be a successful researcher. Time management not only helps with avoiding last-minute stresses, but also ensures that your research process steps are more efficient to accomplish.

Time Management Strategies

There are many benefits to managing your time, such as:

  • Being prepared for any meeting with your professor, students, supervisor, editor, and others
  • Allocating appropriate time to each task by efficiently and realistically planning each stage
  • Properly monitoring the progress of your research project overall

Here are some ways to improve time management skills when writing a research paper:

A project management tool will help you optimize your research process; however, you should generally avoid the tools that only focus on a single task—be it referencing, literature management, plagiarism check, or something else. Those kinds of academic software force you to manage across multiple apps instead of having them all in one place.

Look for tools that combine the features you need in one single dashboard, cutting down the time you spend doing the necessary, yet time-consuming, tasks of managing an academic research paper.

How Flowcite Helps in Time Management for Academic Writing

We applied a Business Process Integration approach to the Flowcite software, putting together the best research, writing, editing and publishing services in one platform. Our software is designed according to the natural workflow of your thought process, with a smart multi-functional tab structure that allows you to research, read, sort, and work at the same time.

Flowcite Dashboard

The platform’s functionality consists of core and add-on services. There’s no need to look elsewhere for tools you can add on to your belt, as we’ve integrated the following services into Flowcite: 

  • A Knowledge Library with over 21 million credible academic sources
  • An AI-driven Article Summarizer
  • A browser plugin for web source referencing
  • Up to 30 GB Personal Library storage for references and citations
  • Built-in LaTeX collaborative text editor
  • A writing extension with over 7,000 citation styles (compatible with MS Word, LaTeX and CKEditor)

Beyond these, Flowcite also helps you write and edit faster with the following services:

  • Professional Similarity Checking, Proofreading, and Journal Matchmaking services
  • Peer Review and Manuscript Submission support
  • Printing Service with free worldwide express delivery

All of these tools enable and teach you to write an essay fast, and even let you take advantage of on-demand editing services whenever you need them. Using Flowcite instead of dozens of other applications and services can save up to 80% of a researcher’s time—often spent on non-writing activities, like project management and software management. 


While it’s important to follow your plan and schedule, remember to work smart and instead of hard. 

There will be days where you feel unmotivated or unproductive, where you’ll find yourself wasting time instead of using it to further your research. When that happens, it’s important to remain committed to your long-term research goal and optimize your workflow with the right tools and strategies for consistent and increased productivity.

Get started with Flowcite today for free and start conducting your research in minutes, not hours.

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