Three Smart & Simple Ways To Improve Your Filing System
For a lot of organizations, dealing with information storage is kind of like cleaning out the “junk drawer” at home. You know the drawer I’m talking about. It’s full of old rubber bands and pens that probably don’t work and that piece of metal that might be a critical part of something or other so you can’t throw it away. The good news is that your filing system really can be fixed once and for all. Here are some tips to help you get your filing system organized and stay that way:
#1 Planning and Organizing Your Filing System
Taking an inventory of your files helps you figure out what categories and subcategories to create for your newly organized filing system. For example, if you have a set of vendor files, you might separate those that have an annual parts or service contract from those that just receive an occasional purchase order. It’s okay to get inventive, just make sure your filing and labeling system is logical and based on common sense. Decide weather you would benefit most from an alphabetic file labeling system, numeric system or color-coded system. Remember to get opinions from those who will actually be using the file system every day.
#2 Pick the Right Filing Supplies For the Application
Choose the size and weight of your file folders based on how many documents they will store and how much handling they have to withstand. File folders with dividers and indexes can add another layer of clarity to your filing system. So can color coded file labels, that lets you identify critical information (such as what year a file was created) at a glance without even reading the label. Each of these little filing tips plays a role in cutting down on the time, frustration, and expense required for finding and managing files over the long term.
#3 Update Your File Cabinets
A shelf based side-tab file folder system is the gold standard for files that will be accessed every day. A shelf based filing system takes up less room than traditional filing cabinets and makes it much easier to locate and retrieve the files you need. Shelf based side tab filing systems can store mixed media (boxes, binders, etc…) and can include hinged or rolling doors for security. Old filing cabinets make a great tax write-off when your business donates them to a local non-profit organization. This can help offset the investment in more efficient file shelving. The space you save with the new file shelving units and the reduced amount of time spent retrieving documents are both financial incentives for making the switch.