When it comes to organizing your office, one of the most important things to consider is your filing cabinet. Having a well-organized filing cabinet can cut down on the amount of clutter you have and help streamline your overall work flow. Here are some tips for organizing filing cabinets that will make this task much easier to do.
Chances are your filing cabinet already contains outdated paperwork you no longer need. As such, the first step in organizing your files should be to eliminate clutter. Most files are no longer needed after two years, with the exception of tax records, which should be maintained for seven years. Shred and discard any documents that are older than that to give you more room to work in.
Each Drawer has a Purpose
If each drawer of your filing cabinets has its own purpose, filing won’t be difficult to keep up with. Have one drawer for accounts payable, another for receivables and a third for payroll. Clearly label the front of each drawer so you know what goes where.
When labeling individual folders, there is no right or wrong way to do this. Think about what would trigger your memory, and then label your folders accordingly. If you’re more likely to remember a name, alphabetical filing would work better; however, filing by date is a better choice if you tend to remember when something happened.
Reduce Large Files Down
Reduce your thicker files to make them easier to access. Do this by separating them into two or more file folders that contain more specific information. For example, if you have a large file for one customer, you could break items inside that file down into date range, product type, etc.
You could also choose subcategories for a particular folder. When using subcategories, label a hanging folder with the main categories, and then write the subcategory on the tab of a manila folder inside it. Using file folders with tabs going all the same way will better help you locate categories and subcategories.
Make Cabinets Easy to Access
Even if your filing cabinet is well organized, workers may still put off filing paperwork if it is difficult to access. Make sure your cabinet is in an easy-to-access area, and documents are more likely to be filed in a timely manner.
These are just a few tips you can use to keep your filing cabinet neatly organized. If you or your business is in the market for filing cabinets, feel free to contact us. Our team can help with all your office needs.