Finding essential files can be a hassle, especially for a business that does not appropriately organize files. Digging around for documents can take up a significant amount of time that you could have spent doing something else that can contribute to the business’s success. Sometimes, employees will end up not finding a critical file, and it can cost them several opportunities and chances of progress. Productivity levels decrease as employees are left with less time during the workday to complete other tasks.
As long as a business’s file organization methods are not helping the company, achieving goals will be delayed, and success will seem far from the present. Looking for files should only take a few seconds, which is why it is crucial to make use of today’s technological advancements and re-evaluate how you store and organize your business’s files and documents.
Shifting from manual to digital
Traditionally, filing systems were done with large wooden or steel cabinets in the office. Files were physically kept inside a storage container and organized by some specific order. However, technology advancements have offered companies and businesses a more convenient way to store, organize, and locate essential documents and files. A digital filing cabinet allows employees to sort and categorize files with just a single click.
The search tool also quickly finds specific documents in less than a second. Thus, digital filing systems not only provide easy and fast ways to file and store your documents but also streamlines the process of finding and reusing information. To achieve an effective managing of business files, start by digitizing every physical document found in the office. Scan documents and transform them into scanned images or electronic text documents.
Benefits of digital document management
As businesses strive to become established entities in the industry, paperwork and essential documents increase tremendously. A large pile of paperwork can take up a lot of space and become a challenge to manage. Critical documents may get lost, and your company’s credibility will suffer the consequences.
To solve this problem, switch to digital. Convert crucial documents to electronic versions to store them safely in a computer, tablet, or mobile phone’s server or cloud, like the Microsoft 365 cloud backup. This digital tool allows businesses to store, organize, backup, and restore important files and documents. Through this, it reduces the chances of losing or accidentally destroying business files.
Another advantage is that it gives businesses a faster and more convenient sharing option. Manually sharing documents will take days or weeks to mail or deliver. Fortunately, you can share digital and scanned documents in less than a minute through email. As a result, efficiency and accuracy can be guaranteed, while employees can also become more productive.
Furthermore, simultaneous sharing can also be a bonus as employees from different departments have access to the same document simultaneously, which improves collaboration and teamwork.
How to effectively and adequately organize files
Most people save their files onto their desktops. This process is ideal for temporary storage and easy access. However, effectively organizing documents on a computer should be sorted through folders. Creating folders should be done minimally. Map out the best way to organize files and avoid multi-layered hierarchies.
Also, place all folders and documents into the main default installation or root folder. Start with a “My Documents” folder or a “Shared Folder” and compile all paperwork in subfolders within that root folder. Having a single fixed location for all your documents will make it easier to manage all the necessary paperwork, especially if you’re using a personal computer.
Use plain language when naming folders. You may easily forget the meaning of codes and abbreviations. That is why it is best to be straightforward with folder names. As the number of folders in your computer increases, the more it will be harder to remember the meaning of the unique abbreviations you’ve created. Additionally, follow file name conventions to specify the folders. Use underscores instead of spaces and be as descriptive as possible for easy access and identification.
Lastly, make it a habit to clear out old and useless documents that you will no longer need. Be attentive when deleting and clearing out old files to ensure that you won’t accidentally delete an important document that has not been backed up. At the same time, make sure your files are regularly backed up. Make copies of critical paperwork and save the file onto another drive or cloud.
Effectively managing electronic paperwork can be considered an efficient strategy for a business. With the tips provided above, your business can gain a significant advantage in finding and using essential documents that can support your business and increase your chances of success.