Digital files must be organized to make them useful and accessible. Note that organizing files may be different than organizing photos. Also recognize that there are different types of files that require different types of organization. Normally files can be classified as either general documents or dated documents.
- General Documents include birth certificates, property deeds, business documents such as articles of incorporation, educational transcripts, certificates, etc. These files can be organized into categories.
- Dated Documents include tax records, receipts, annual forms, medical claims, annual valuation notices, correspondence, etc. These are organized by date and then by categories with that date.
Begin organizing by creating a single folder to contain all of the documents and folders. With a single folder you can easily backup all of the information with a simple Copy and Paste. This one folder will contain all of your General and Dated documents.
Start by inventory of your documents and formulating a plan for converting and organizing. Organizing is a large job composed of many small tasks. Documents to organize include:
- Tax & financial records
- Letters & correspondence
Organizing these digital assets will vary but here is a sample folder structure:
|Statements, receipts, etc.|
General receipts stored by date
Tax documents and forms (see Annual Template for details)
|Each year contains subfolders to|
organize the specific documents
|Info related to business assets|
Company docs, licenses, etc.
Company minutes by date
|General information about personal assets, etc.|
|Personal documents for employment, education, birth certificate, social security card, etc.|
The folder structure for each year can be saved as a template and replicated in each year. Store the template folder structure in an _template folder that contains all of the subfolders (details). Using an annual template will save time and make your folders more consistent. Modify the template to fit your specific requirements.