How To Organize Files On A Computer

How to Organize Files On A Computer

“Disorganization costs thousands of dollars to businesses every day”

The primary step of organizing the workplace is to organize your files, folders and documents efficiently on a computer. Organization reduces document search & turnaround time and improves productivity across every level. But what do we mean by the organization of files and folders? It means creating & following a precise strategy of creating, naming & segregating files and folders, to support faster search & to ensure that even a new employee can find the documents he/she is looking for within seconds.

So how does one go about organizing their files on a computer? Here are a few tips on how to organize files on a computer

Tips on how to organize files on computer

1. Digitize your documents

First & foremost, digitize your documents. The days of paper are long gone, and if you are one of those companies that still prints every invoice & waits on client approvals because they are out of town, wake up from the overhead-induced lumber & start digitizing your documents.

Digital documents are better at everything. They are easier to organize, search, share, protect & track. Digitization significantly reduces paper-based overheads like stationery costs, physical damages, printing & scanning costs, storage costs, etc. If you’d like to start digitizing, you can check out our software GLOBODOX. GLOBODOX’s bulk scanning feature will let you convert & organize all your old business records in a jiffy.

2. Don’t save files on the desktop

We bet you have seen a cluttered desktop that made you squeal with pain. Don’t worry you aren’t weird, you just like your things organized. And you are right. Desktops aren’t meant to be cluttered. They should only contain in-progress files & documents, a few daily access folders like ‘My computer’ & ‘Recycle Bin’, coupled with a wallpaper of the Swiss Alps or a motivational quote by Henry Ford to get your day started. Storing files & folders on a computer’s desktop makes them harder to organize & more prone to unauthorized access.

3. Create a limited no. of folders

How many folders do you have on your system right now? If the answer is ‘a lot’ then probably most of your folders could have been subfolders instead. It is important to map out a pattern for all your folders & stick to them.

For example, create a folder on your computer to organize files for a particular client. Inside the folder, you can create subfolders for different types of documents like invoices, project proposals, feedback, etc. If you encounter a new hierarchy like marketing, create a new subfolder dedicated to marketing documents & files.

Note: Create a folder pattern that is beneficial for the maximum number of users in the organization and don’t change existing patterns if the users are already accustomed to them

4. Segregate personal & business files & folders

If you use your personal computer to access work documents you must create a clear distinction between them both. This is what it would look like in your system.

  • /Documents/Business
  • /Documents/Personal

You can also segregate documents & files within these folders based on their type & content. Business files can be divided into marketing, accounting, admin, HR, etc and personal files can be divided into travel, insurance, medical, audit, receipts & more.

Here is a sample folder structure created in GLOBODOX Document Management System for your reference

5. Design & follow a naming strategy

A file name should be definitive, clear & precise. But how do we create the ideal file name? Let’s say you have to name an invoice that you might not need before the next audit, but you also have to give it a name that you will remember the next time you go looking. To do that, the name needs to contain two or more of the below data points:

  • Date
  • Type of file
  • Name of the client
  • Payment status
  • Serial number

Let’s say you choose to name the file based on the client name, document type & date. This is what the file name should look like,

  • ABCCorp Invoice 2020-08

The above file will display in all search results with the keywords ‘ABCCorp’, ‘Invoice’ & ‘2020-08’.

6. Use shortcuts, favorites & launchers

Shortcuts, favorites & launchers are an organizer’s best friends. Do you have a folder that you access every day? Do you find it tedious to go through the entire folder structure to find the same folder every day? The shortcut feature lets you pin the folder to the File Explorer sidebar for easier access.

Another easier way of accessing folders is by marking them as favorites. You can also choose to remove a folder from the favorites section anytime you want. Keyboard-savvy users also have the option of using free app launchers like LaunchBar or Listery for faster access to folders.

Organization tools for files, folders & documents

1. Digital filing cabinets

A digital filing cabinet is a replica of the traditional filing system, with better accessibility & connectivity. Digital filing system also provide additional features like keyword extraction & multi-condition search, making it easier for you to organize files on a computer.

2. Dropbox, iCloud, Google Drive & GLOBODOX

Dropbox, iCloud & Google Drive & GLOBODOX are some of the most popular file management system used by businesses around the world. These system allow users to replicate existing folder structures and also provide drag & drop features that reduce file import time.

3. Folder templates

Once you have understood your structural requirements, you can create a sample folder template which can be replicated for all clients. Here is a sample folder structure for your reference created in GLOBODOX

4. Document management system

Document management systems like GLOBODOX are the perfect choice for anyone looking for organizing files on a computer. Document management system provide advanced organizational features like tags, document linking & more, as well as end-to-end automation based solutions like indexing, version control, workflow automation, automated imports, built-in scanning & printing and much more.

Conclusion

Organizing your files and folders on a computer is an important aspect of everyday work, and it can reduce working hours & overhead costs. We hope this article has given you what you need to get started with organizing your digital files. For any further questions or queries connect with us at sales@globodox.com

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