Whether you are running a small business with fewer than five employees or the COI of a larger company, maintaining and organizing business documents can be a messy business. Like any good start to a short- and long-term task, it’s best to start with a strategy. Once you have a vision and a plan, the day-to-day document duties will be streamlined and organized.
When you don’t have a strategy, there is no cohesive plan. Without a coherent plan, business teammates generally handle documents in their own way, Bottom line. You will save hours of admin time by creating a company strategy and a plan on how everyone will need to handle business docs and data.
In today’s business world, one would think that maintaining business documents would be a priority. But, they are documents – so they are not treated with the proper authority they have as a group when needed for numerous types of financial reasons/situations.
If you have not developed a doc and data strategy, this list will get you started:
1. Decide who is ultimately in charge.
It is important to give someone the responsibility of ensuring the strategy and plan is followed. That way, that person will have the authority to request receipts and other documents that belong in the company file system.
2. Review existing filing systems and document management processes.
Look in every direction, both paper and electronic, to identify current workflows. Determine how to streamline the process, eliminate redundant duties and accurately maintain documents.
3. Identify the types of documents.
Divide the documents (both digital and paper) into financial categories, such as:
- Clients Information & Communication
- Sales Records by month, by client
- Company expenses by tax category
Once categories are clearly established, divide and conquer! Prioritize the categorized documents as to the best locations for easy storage and retrieval. Answer these questions before completing this step:
- How will the files be indexed?
- How and who will staff access files and information?
- How long should we keep documents, and who will keep up with it?
4. Eliminate documents that do not need to be preserved.
That’s the fun part. Toss, or better yet, shred old documents that are no longer needed for anything in the foreseeable or long-term future. Keep it clean and mean, and you will save yourself and others from time-consuming and redundant tasks.
5. Partner with a Document Management Software Company.
Before you implement your new strategy, we hope you will consider LedgerDocs for professional help. We can simplify the process. Our data management software is the ideal cloud-based location for all of your data. It’s safe, secure, and easy to upload and retrieve exactly what you need when you need it.