Keeping your computer files is important, but it’s not all easy. Luckily, there are many good practices to organize computer files, which can help you to keep your files and documents neat and easily searchable.
Paper files used to be organized by putting them in physical folders, then putting them in filing cabinets. It was crucial to ensure that documents were always filed properly so they could be found in the future. This took significant time and resources.
Selectively Place Files on Your Desktop
Having clutter on your desktop makes finding what you need more difficult. You shouldn’t have much more than your recycle bin on your desktop. The only time you should have a text file on there is if it’s something that you refer to all the time, and it should be a temporary thing. It’s best to keep as little as possible on your desktop. This keeps your work space clean and tidy. However, if there are programs or files that you use regularly, keeping them on the desktop is beneficial.
Don’t Create Too Many Folders
Don’t create a ton of folders; it’s not necessary. Map out a good hierarchy of folders, and you can find a good place for your documents without having to make a hundred separate folders. Creating too many folders will also clutter your computer and make finding the files you need difficult. Take some time to figure out a folder structure that makes sense to you, and stick with it.
Always have archive folders. While you may not need a file right now, having a copy of it archived is beneficial for future use. In some industries, you need to keep archived files for several years. Keeping archive folders allows you to ensure that the files you need today are readily available, while older documents can still be accessed.
If your computer is getting a little cluttered, make sure to take the time to organize it. This allows you to work more productively and ensure that you can always find the files you need.