Document Filing Procedures

by Yvonne Van Damme; Updated September 26, 2017
An effiecient document filing system is essential for your business.

Efficiency is key in just about any office or business setting. Being organized is a skill that will benefit any office environment. One thing that you may want to improve, even if you find that you are generally organized, is your document filing and maintenance procedures. You can spend hours searching for important documents if there is not a system in place to manage them. Having the ability to obtain necessary documents when you're under pressure is vital. Although some workplaces may have actual physical files, the vast majority of document filing happens on the computer.

Naming

Name all files and folders in a consistent manner. Do not name some of them by date and others by the name of the project. Be sure that every file of a particular project has something unique to the project in its title. Create a master project folder with an easily identifiable name. Divide this folder into subfolders with clear titles that you can use to list the names of those working on it or other necessary things.

Saving

Store similar documents together. If you are working on a particular project, save all of the documents in the same master folder on your computer. This is more efficient and logical than storing all spreadsheets or all graphics in various places. When you are scrambling with details, one click will take you to the project.

Content

Before you begin filing documents, take some time to review the content. Do not save all of the information that is sent to you. This will mean more time looking through unnecessary things later. If the document is relevant to your particular project, save it. If not, remove it from your computer.

Status

Separate documents that are a part of ongoing work from documents that are for completed work and being saved only for reference and records purposes. Utilize your folder system. Save the current documents in an easily accessible place, such as your computer's desktop. Once the work is completed, move it to the project folder in which you store completed work. Tailor this method to suit your business.

About the Author

Yvonne Van Damme is a freelance writer based in Seattle. She has been writing for several years with a focus on criminal justice and legal topics. In addition to various websites, she has been published in several academic journals. Van Damme holds a Bachelor of Arts in law, society and justice and sociology from the University of Washington.

Photo Credits

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