Creating systems that you can use yearlong is a vital part of an efficient business, and that includes creating a system to organize paperwork. Instead of sorting through piles of paperwork on your desk searching for a needed document, create a system that will enable you to know where to find every file. Sounds great, right? This Professional Organizer in NYC agrees! Here are four steps to creating a system to organize paperwork in your office.
Create an incoming paper system. This is extremely important for any paper management system. Add a file tray to your desk and use that space for all incoming papers. Don’t allow them to pile up on other surfaces. Then schedule time daily to process all incoming paper. Actually schedule the time into your calendar – this allows you to not waste productive time during the day continually sorting through new paperwork and potentially getting it mixed up with documents from current projects that you are working on.
Organize your paper files. Remove any files that you no longer need. If the files are no longer needed on a daily basis but need to be saved for reference or archival purposes, relocate them into a storage box in a closet or other area of your office building. Label the box to include a date for next review and time to recycle or purge those documents. For papers that don’t need to be saved, recycle, shred, or throw them away as necessary. Create any specific files you may need for the new year.
Use the Cloud. Not every office is paperless, but even if you aren’t 100% paperless, odds are good you will be sharing and receiving documents via the internet. You can scan files to save on your computer and recycle the paper copies, which will create more space for paperwork that needs to be kept. Great options for Cloud sharing include Google Drive and Dropbox. Another great benefit of using these Cloud sharing programs is that you can collaborate online together, which will be more productive than trying to share edits/content changes via email as you can make changes in real time.
Prepare for tax season – this year AND next! As you are reorganizing your files and clearing paper from your desk, create a file for this year’s tax return. While you are at it, create a file or series of files for NEXT year, too! As the year progresses, make sure to add all receipts, expense reports, and any other pertinent tax related information into that file. Then next January you won’t be on the hunt to find all of the paperwork you need.
Constantly digging through the piles of paper in your office is neither productive or effective, and only leads to further frustration. Instead, take some time and these tips from your Professional Organizer in NYC and create a system to organize paperwork in your office today. Need hands on help? Check out what a professional organizer can do for you.