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The benefits of using a digital filing system

27 April, 2023 · 5 min read·Business
The benefits of using a digital filing system
Discover the top benefits of switching to a digital filing system and see how it can improve your organization and productivity. Read our latest blog post now!

Digital filing systems are gradually displacing traditional paper-based filing systems due to developments in digital technology. Digital filing offers various benefits over traditional paper-based filing, including better search functionality, simpler access, and more storage space. Physical document storage can take up to 15% of your office area!

This article will cover the advantages of a digital file system, how to set up your own digital filing system, and how to manage it over time. Keep reading to learn why this technology is essential for productivity and how it can transform your firm.

Why digital filing is essential for productivity

In today's technological age, digital filing has become essential for individuals and businesses. The traditional method of filing physical papers and documents has become outdated and inefficient. There is no longer a need for large filing cabinets or countless stacks of paper to clutter up your workspace, thanks to the development of digital filing.

Digital filing is storing and organizing your documents and data in an electronic format, accessible from anywhere with an internet connection. It allows for easy information retrieval and eliminates the possibility of misplaced or lost documents. This can ultimately save time, increase productivity, and boost efficiency.

Moreover, digital filing is not just a matter of convenience or modernity but also environmental responsibility. It has become crucial for people and companies to lessen their carbon footprint since the ecological impacts of human activity are becoming more and more well-known. Adopting digital filing minimizes our paper use, saves trees, and reduces waste. Therefore, embracing digital filing is a practical choice for productivity and responsible action for the planet.

Overall, the benefits of digital filing are numerous and compelling. From its convenient accessibility and organization to its eco-friendliness, it is no wonder that it has become an essential practice for individuals, businesses, and organizations. So if you still need to embrace digital filing, it's time to make the switch and experience the advantages for yourself.

Digital filing vs. traditional filing: which is better?

Regarding filing documents, there are two main options: traditional filing systems and digital filing systems. Traditional filing systems refer to using physical paper files and organizing them manually. Digital filing, however, entails storing all your documents online, such as on a computer, tablet, or in the cloud.

Both traditional and digital filing have their unique advantages and disadvantages. For instance, the conventional method has been used for a long time and is tried and tested. The system is easy to understand and navigate and is reliable since once a document is filed, it tends to stay in place. However, when dealing with large documents, traditional filing is cumbersome, and managing them can be challenging.

Digital files can be accessed quickly using appropriate keywords or filters, permitting speedy retrieval of documents. By digitizing your files, you can search and find documents much faster and more efficiently than rifling through stacks of papers.

The digital filing also saves time and enhances productivity while minimizing physical storage space. No longer must you waste time and money printing out each and every piece of correspondence that comes across your desk so that you can store it. Also, storing digital information requires far less space than storing equivalent amounts of real paper files because they frequently take up less room on your computer or in the cloud.

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Benefits of using a digital filing system

Digital filing is a highly efficient alternative to traditional paper-based systems. For those who want to simplify their processes and increase efficiency, it is a crucial tool. One of their most important advantages is that digital file systems are simpler to use and access than conventional ones. Digital files may be searched for, located, and retrieved with just a few clicks, as opposed to hard-copy filing systems where you must physically locate a document. This entails that you can save time looking for actual documents.

You may access files nearly anywhere with an internet connection, which is a big benefit. Additionally, digital filing ensures that your data is always backed up and secure. In other words, you no longer need to worry about losing information due to theft or other potential damage to your office.

Another advantage of a digital filing system is that it allows for collaborative working. Multiple users can access the same file from different locations, which is impossible with traditional methods. It also allows for real-time collaboration, where team members can simultaneously make document changes and updates. Digital filing systems are also customizable and can be designed to meet different office needs. To suit your workflow and office setup, you can decide how to arrange your files and folders. Finding and retrieving documents is now a lot simpler and quicker as a result.

Becoming digital is a tiny but important step on the right path in a world where environmental protection is continually threatened. Furthermore, digital filing is eco-friendly. Our carbon footprint can be greatly reduced using less paper and ink. Also, since digital files can be accessed remotely, traveling physically to obtain hard-copy files that could be kept in a distant location is not necessary. This reduces fuel consumption and carbon emissions further.

How to set up and organize your digital filing system

The next step is to set up and arrange your digital filing system once you've decided to switch. You must have a clear idea of what you need to organize and the various categories each type of document belongs to. As a result, you will find it simpler to manage documents into the proper files.

The first step is creating a folder hierarchy in your digital filing system. Create sub-folders inside each of the main folders, such as "Personal," "Work," and "Others,". Each sub-folder should contain documents that are similar. For instance, the "Work" folder might have "Invoices," "Contracts," "Correspondence," and so forth.

When naming folders and documents, use clear and concise names that describe their contents. This makes it easier to search for and locate records when necessary. Avoid using generic folder names such as “Documents” or “Folder 1,” which can be confusing and inefficient.

Once you’ve created your folder hierarchy and named your files, it’s time to start organizing your documents. First, go through all your digital documents and categorize them into the relevant folders. Then, go through each folder and sort the records by date or importance. You'll find it simpler to locate the documents you need right away.

Tips for maintaining and updating your digital filing system

Maintaining and updating your digital filing system is crucial to ensure its efficiency and effectiveness. Here are some suggestions to help you keep your digital file system updated and organized: 

Schedule frequent backups of your digital files to prevent data loss during a system failure or cyber-attack. Your backups can be kept in the cloud, on a network-attached storage device, or on an external hard disk.

Secondly, regularly review and delete unnecessary files to avoid cluttering your digital space. To make it easier to choose which files to keep, archive, or delete, you may set up a system of classifying them according to their importance and retention times.

Thirdly, update file names and add accurate descriptions to make searching and retrieving files easier. You can use a consistent naming convention and include relevant keywords to help you find files quickly.

Lastly, secure your digital filing system by using strong passwords and enabling two-factor authentication. You can limit access to sensitive files and folders only to authorized personnel.

By following these tips, you can maintain an organized and secure digital filing system to improve your productivity and efficiency. Digital filing saves time and money and helps reduce your carbon footprint by eliminating paper clutter. 

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In 2023, there's no escaping the paperless office. With technology advancing rapidly, it's time to rethink your filing system and other aspects of operating your firm. Digital filing systems offer practicality and peace of mind, allowing you to find and store files in seconds, not hours. In this modern era, embracing digital filing is a sure way to boost productivity and efficiency in your workplace.

A digital filing system is the way of the future, offering a more sustainable and eco-friendly solution to paper-based filing systems. A paper-based filing system requires significant physical storage space, equating to additional storage costs and time better allocated to other pressing matters. Digital filing systems eliminate the need for physical storage, reducing waste and lowering your carbon footprint.

Thanks to the advanced search functions offered by digital filing solutions, businesses can quickly and easily locate and retrieve files, ensuring that no information is lost or misplaced. Also, companies can make sure their digital file system is as safe as possible, preventing data loss and unwanted access.

Digital filing offers a range of benefits that traditional filing methods simply can't match. From practicality to more eco-friendly solutions, there's no excuse not to switch to digital filing. Embrace digital technology and become more efficient and productive today. 

B12 is a platform that enables you to digitize your data and documents, while setting up more efficient workflows. Bring your invoicing and payments, client intake, contracts & eSignatures, and more, online with B12.

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