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3 Simple Filing Guidelines
by Maria Gracia
One of the most basic ways to find papers when you need them is to retrieve them
from an effective filing system. A good filing system will allow you to find
what you're looking for in 10 seconds or less.
Here are 3 simple filing guidelines that can help:
1. CATEGORIZING. A filing system is only effective, if you can find
everything you need, when you need it--without a struggle. And all good filing
systems have different categories of papers. Your papers are either going to
fall into a MAIN category, or a SUB-category.
For example, a main category might be FINANCIAL. Some sub-categories within
Financial, may be:
In your filing cabinet, your main categories should always be hanging file
folders with a labeled tab. Your sub-categories should be labeled manila file
folders inside the appropriate main category hanging folder.
- Savings Account
- Checking Account
- Money Market Account
2. BASIC FILING SYSTEMS. For the most part, people choose to use one, or
a combination of, these basic filing systems:
The one you use, depends on what you're using it for. For example, if you need
to keep files for all of your customers (or associates, friends, etc.),
alphabetical by last name usually will work best.
- Alphabetical (A, B, C, D, etc.)
- Numerical (1, 2, 3, 4, etc.)
- Chronological (Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, etc.)
For sequential case numbers or projects that are numbered, a numerical system
would probably work best.
If it is necessary for you to find things by date, then chronological may be
Some people get really creative and use a combination of these systems. For
example, you may want your main categories to be chronological, but the
sub-categories inside to be alphabetical.
3. LABELING. If a file isn't labeled properly, it's not going to be quick
and easy to find:
by Maria Gracia - Get Organized Now!
Want to get organized? Get your FREE Get Organized Now! Idea-Pak, filled with
tips and ideas to help you organize your home, your office and your life, at the
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