Document Management Tips: How to Create a Filing System

Laptop on desk full of documents with files on shelves in background

Simple, sensible filing systems are a big part of document management. Before you can benefit from a filing system, though, you have to design one that works for you--and that takes a little bit of work. Here are some document management tips to help get the job done!

First Steps for a Filing System

Document management is all about saving time, money, and effort by organizing and streamlining your files. To do that, you'll need an effective filing system. Here are the first steps you'll need to take in order to get your filing system in place:

Step 1: Consider your company.

The very first thing to do is reflect on your workflows, needs, and habits. Who accesses information the most, and how often? How can you structure your new filing system so that it is easily accessible to everyone? Answering these questions helps lay the groundwork for your next steps.

Step 2: Decide on organizational conventions.

Once you know what your needs are, it's time to create "rules" for your filing system. These organizational conventions will help users understand how to file information. For example, do you need to list dates first? Does it make more sense to organize files by title or keyword?

Step 3: Prioritize information.

Finally, you'll need to determine which files are accessed most frequently and which could be placed in long-term storage, and then organize accordingly. This helps keep your filing system efficient, reliable, and user-friendly.

Step 4: Look to the future.

After mastering the basics and laying the framework for your filing system, it's time to ask some of the more complicated questions:

  • Security: How will you protect the documents in your filing system?
  • Longevity: Are you designing a system that can remain useful even as your company grows?
  • Flexibility: Can your filing system be used to organize both digital documents and paper files?
  • Environmental friendliness: Is your filing system designed to help you go paperless in the future?


As you begin work on your new filing system, remember that document management should be about making your work life simpler. Take the process one step at a time, ask questions along the way, and utilize all the document management solutions at your disposal. You'll be glad you did!

If you want to learn more about document management or have questions about creating a filing system, contact us today!

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