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The Franklin Planner, a paper-based time management system created by Hyrum W. Smith, began sales in 1984 from Franklin International Institute, Inc.  The planner itself is the paper component of the time management system developed by Smith.
The planner pages are drilled, loose-leaf style pages in different sizes and formats. Although formats are varied, and have been updated through the years, most planners contain areas for an appointment schedule, prioritized daily tasks, and notes. The planner pages also indicate a method of keeping track of one's tasks by noting items as completed, forwarded (to another day), deleted, delegated, or in progress. A key section at the rear of the planner contains addresses. Other inserts include ledger sheets for tracking finances or vehicle mileage, exercise logs and other individualized reference materials.
Franklin Planners are printed in the United States of America on 30% post-consumer recycled paper of a high quality. There is also a 100% recycled version. Planner accessories such as monthly tabs, plastic sleeves and inserts, storage cases, and binders add to the system, keeping personal records in one place for improved organization.
Smith named his planning system after Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), who famously kept a small private book as detailed in his autobiography. A core technique of the Franklin Planner system involves beginning each day with fifteen minutes of "solitude and planning".
The planner comes in four sizes:
- Monarch (8.5x11", 216x280 mm)
- Classic (5.5x8.5", 140x216 mm)
- Compact (4.5x6.75",108x172 mm)
- Pocket (3.5x6", 89x153 mm)
Because of its overall design, the Franklin Planner system lends itself to use as a tickler file, as well as a long-range planner. Most annual versions of the page inserts for the Franklin system include yearly calendars for at least five years; future monthly calendars for at least three years; and then the current year's pages and associated monthly calendars for planning. When used as a total package, the system provides a means of tracking minute details; storage of signed agreements (especially if pages are archived in the archival binders); and tracking of business and personal expenses for taxes.
The Franklin Planner is marketed to consumers through an e-commerce web site, a US-based call center, and a GSA government contract. Marketing channels also exist outside the United States of America.
The Franklin Day Planner was first produced in 1984 by the Franklin International Institute, Inc., which later became Franklin Quest. In 1997, Franklin Quest and the Covey Leadership Center merged to become FranklinCovey. The Franklin Planner has continued to be sold under the FranklinCovey name to this day. However, in 2008, FranklinCovey sold its Consumer Solutions Business Unit, including Franklin Planner, to a private equity firm. The parent company of the Franklin Planner is currently FC Organizational Products, LLC, which is the exclusive worldwide licensee of the FranklinCovey® brand.
- Smith, Hyrum (1987). The Advanced Day Planner User's Guide. Salt Lake City, Utah: Franklin International Institute, Inc. ISBN 0-939817-01-2.
- "Franklin Planner vs. Hot Topic: Side-by-side Comparison". 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-04. "International customers can purchase products from Franklin's international sites, serving countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Canada, United Kingdom, Mexico, and others."
- "2008 FranklinCovey Annual Report".