Converting to Color Coded Files Plus Vertical File Shelving Saves Time and Space
The recent installation of color-coded files plus open vertical file shelving resulted in increased productivity and space savings for a local Dallas distributor. The project consisted of providing color-coded files plus vertical file shelving, filing supplies, and a file conversion. The Dallas based company selected Southwest Solutions Group® because of their experience, knowledge, and ability to provide a turnkey solution from a single source. "We talked to several vendors, but we felt comfortable with Southwest Solutions Group because of their experience and positive comments from several previous clients", stated the company's Office Manager. "One of the vendors had all the equipment and supplies we needed but we weren't comfortable with their ability to provide the conversion services. We just felt that Southwest Solutions Group offered the best value based on our needs."
Survey of Files Plus Our Filing System Recommendation
As part of the proposal process, we conducted a survey of the client's files plus a recommendation for a new filing system. The survey revealed that files were stored alphabetically by company name in four drawer file cabinets. Files were stacked on top of the filing cabinets because the file drawers were crammed full. The client not only had no floor space to add anymore filing cabinets, they recently boxed up some semi-active files and sent them offsite to make room for newer files. Other observations from our file survey included:
- The client's filing system was growing at over 15% per year and the client had outgrown the available space.
- The filing system was maintained by one part time employee with no filing procedures. The file room was open to anyone in the firm who needed a file creating problems with misfiles and inconsistent filing methods. For example, files like 3M (Minnesota, Mining, & Manufacturing were sometimes filed by the number "3", for 3M, or by "M" for MMM, or by "M" for Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing, or even under "T" for Three M.
- Finally, some of the older semi-active files were boxed up and sent to offsite storage to make room for newer files in the file cabinets.
"Between the open file room policy, the alphabetical filing by company name, and shipping files offsite, you had about a 50/50 chance of finding the file the first time", said the Office Manager.
Converting to Color-Coded Files
Working with the client, we recommended converting to color-coded files stored in vertical file shelving. New files were manufactured with color-coded name labels attached and ready for use. Large file carts were brought to move the files from the vertical file cabinets to stage files for the file conversion and to clear the room for the new open vertical file shelving. The file conversion took place over a weekend so daily business was not disrupted. Old files were matched up with the new color-coded file folders and the documents were transferred to the new files. Once documents were transferred into the new color-coded file folders, files were placed back on the carts and moved to the new vertical file shelving units. Making a new file consisted of typing name label information into a software program and then printing a 7-1/2" long color-coded file folder name label from a standard ink jet printer. Once the color-coded name label was printed, it was applied to a new side tab folder (see file labeling print systems).
Benefits of Converting to Color-Coded Files
Converting to color-coded files provided several benefits for the client. Some of the benefits included:
- The side tab color-coded files were stored in open vertical file shelving that maximized the use of the file room. Converting to color-coded files plus the vertical file shelving was able to increase the filing capacity of the room by 53%, allowing enough room for the semi-active files moved offsite to be brought back onsite. Also, the bottom shelves of the vertical file shelving units were left empty to accommodate for file growth and reduce shifting of files due to file growth.
- Converting to color-coded files allows the file clerk to standardize on how files with difficult company file names are created and organized.
- Filing procedures were established for checking out files and all returned files are refiled by the file clerk to help keep the filing system properly organized.
"The new color-coded files plus the new file procedures has made it much easier and quicker to find the file the first time", commented the Office Manager. "The new color-coded files helped us get organize and improve our team's morale."
Let Us Help You Get Organized With A Color-Coded Filing System
Designing and planning a filing system that organizes your business to save time and floor space is an important part of what we do. Whether your filing needs are small or large, simple or complex, standard or custom, we will work closely with you to fully understand your needs and provide a filing solution to optimize your business. Contact us today at 1-800-803-1083 to schedule an appointment with one of our office filing specialists to find out if color-coded files plus vertical file shelving makes sense for your business.
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