When you operate a business, you need a filing system that can keep documents organized. This ensures that you’re protecting business data and have records of transactions. But if you don’t develop a clear system for managing business files, you risk data breaches and legal issues.
What do you need to do to stay safe and compliant? Read on to learn about 6 common file management errors to avoid for your business!
1. Not Assigning the Responsibility of File Management
Who is responsible for managing business files in your organization? If you can’t answer this question in a matter of seconds, it’s time to re-evaluate your protocols. You may even want to introduce quarterly file management updates to your reporting structure as part of your business plan.
Turning to a file management agency can allow you to focus on other matters. If you do keep management in-house, be certain you have multiple people with knowledge of the system.
2. Disregarding the Rules
While you may think it’s fine to hold onto files indefinitely, doing so could result in legal trouble. In fact, there are laws within your state governing how long you are allowed to keep certain documents. When it comes to sensitive information, it’s best to check for compliance regularly.
3. Common File Management Errors Include Not Labeling Folders
In general, it’s wise to have a uniform approach to organizing and labeling files at your business. For instance, you may want to determine names for files by date or sector. Just be sure that everyone is on the same page and you’ve written the system somewhere accessible.
For paper files, use clear labels and sturdy folders that can hold up over time in a file cabinet or file storage center. Turn to https://legalsupply.com/legal-tabs/blank-tabs/
4. Choosing the Cheapest Storage Facility
Yes, it may be cheaper to rent a self-storage unit to keep your small business’s files. But with such sensitive information, you ought to seek out a secure and climate-controlled option.
Moisture and insects can damage paper files. And a facility with minimal security oversight sets you up for theft. Go with a secure, insulated file storage center.
5. Not Disposing of Old Files Properly
When a file reaches the end of its useful life, do you just throw it away? If so, you expose secure numbers, names, and passwords. When it comes to protecting business data, you need to send all old files through a shredder.
6. Neglecting to Create Digital Versions of Hard Copies
It’s critical to have hard copies of files in a file storage center. But do you have digital copies, as well? If a violent storm during the summer months destroys a storage facility or the files disappear, you need to have the data stored securely in a digital format.
Get Better at Managing Business Files
When you develop a system and ensure that all stakeholders are aware, you can avoid common file management errors. Assign responsible individuals to manage your files and data. And get updates to be sure that all old files are disposed of properly.
For more tips to keep business running smoothly, check back for new articles.
Rachel Dixon works on travel and features at Daily Mid Time