Electronic file management is one of the biggest challenges facing businesses today. In addition to local document storage on desktops and mobile devices, more and more SMBs and enterprises are choosing cloud platforms as their default data repositories.
In 2019, 94% of small businesses and 81% of enterprises reported using the cloud for file storage and/or backup.
Still, not all businesses are completely reliant on cloud platforms when it comes to storing, transmitting, and organizing digital files. According to Spiceworks report, 81% of businesses are using local file servers or network-attached storage (NAS) arrays for housing corporate data. In case shared access is required, documents are uploaded in the cloud and access permissions are assigned to specific users.
The COVID-19 pandemic has contributed to the global market growth of document management solutions. Experts believe that by 2027, it’s likely to reach $57.56 billion. The rapid adoption of cloud-based technologies increased the demand for functionality-rich document management solutions. For instance, services like pdfFiller provide users with the possibility to create, edit, manage, e-sign, share, collaborate on files as well as securely store them in the cloud.
Inconsistent file storage policies lead to corporate data getting scattered across multiple cloud platforms and local devices. This is why it’s crucial to keep your digital documents organized and up-to-date in a single data storage. In this blog, we’re going to share the best ways to organize documents with pdfFiller.
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Here’s how to organize files inside pdfFiller
Dedicating two minutes a day to organizing files stored on the platform will save you hours at the end of each month. Here are a few file organization tips to help you streamline your business routines with pdfFiller:
Customize your folder structuring system
Getting lost in a variety of folders and files is easy unless you have a folder structuring system consistent with the peculiarities of your business. A thought-out folder structure will make browsing through files and folders an intuitive process. It’s always a good idea to create and group folders, keeping in mind the different categories that you operate daily.
For example, if you create customized documents for each client, it’s worth organizing folders by a client’s name. In case your business is more project-specific, it’s worth creating a separate folder for every project. Deadlines can be another parameter used to create a folder structure in pdfFiller. All it takes is choosing a day, month, or year as organizational criteria.
Use tags to instantly find required documents
pdfFiller gives its users a well-structured filing system using a combination of tags and Smart Folders. Tags are keywords assigned to files to label and color code them. With the help of tagging, you can organize documents by any number of criteria and attribute up to 50 tags to a single file.
Useful tip: tagging is a great way to label the approved and signed version of a document once it appears in your pdfFiller account. If you don’t want to create dedicated folders for each type of document, add tags for ‘client name’, ‘document type’, and ‘date’ to find the needed document faster.
Here’s how to add tags in pdfFiller:
- Select a document in MY DOCS and click More on the right. Choose Add a Tag from the menu.
- In the pop-up Tags window, type the name of your tag and select a color. Alternatively, choose one of the available tags. Add several tags to the document, if necessary.
- To search for documents by tag, click on the search bar and select the Tags filter on the left. Enter the tag’s name or choose it from the list. After that, the search result will display all documents with the indicated tag or tags.
Use Smart Folders
pdfFiller’s Smart Folders let you group relevant documents by tags and keep them in reach. Creating Smart Folders can help you organize a separate folder for a client or project. Using a combination of tags and Smart Folders allows you to group your documents more effectively.
Here’s how to create and customize Smart Folders in your pdfFiller account:
- Go to the Smart Folders section and click Create Smart Folder.
- Name your folder and add tags referring to the contents of the document. You can add tags to documents from your desktop or the mobile app. All tags you create are displayed in the list of existing tags.
- Choose the manner in how documents are sorted by selecting Any of or All of the indicated tags. For instance, if you create a specific tag template, you will be able to instantly access documents marked with this tag when opening a respective Smart Folder.
- Once you’re finished creating tags, proceed to organize documents with the same tags into a Smart Folder. Pick the tags to filter documents to your Smart Folder.
Take note: even if you don’t want to use Smart Folders, for now, you can still add tags and easily search for a document by its tags in your pdfFiller account.
Save time using Templates
Do you need to re-use the same data repeatedly in your business routines? If the answer is yes, then creating document templates will help you automate the mundane aspects of your workflow.
pdfFiller’s Templates help automatically pre-fill documents with repetitive data. For instance, you can use them to fill out multiple documents, all of which require the same information (company name, business address, phone and fax numbers, etc). After you’ve pre-filled one document with specific information, feel free to create a Template for future use.
Here’s how to create a document template in pdfFiller:
- Open your document in MY DOCS.
- Populate it with the repetitive data that will be used for other documents.
- When finished, click DONE to save your changes.
- Finally, proceed to create a template. Go back to MY DOCS, choose the pre-filled document, then click Convert to Template in the panel on the right.
- To access the newly-created template, click the Templates tab in the Dashboard and edit it as you see fit.
Rearrange your documents
pdfFiller‘s Rearrange Pages feature allows you to change the order of your document’s pages to any order you like. To use this feature, select the document in MY DOCS, then click Rearrange Pages in the panel on the right. After that, you’ll be able to choose how to reorder the pages in the document.
Choose one of the following:
- “Move to” to place the selected page wherever you want it in the document by entering the page number.
- “Duplicate” to make a copy of any existing page in the document.
- “Add Page” to insert a page without content.
- “Undo/Redo” to cancel the last action if you’ve changed your mind.
When finished, click Apply. You can use this feature to rotate document pages from portrait view to landscape or vice versa.
Split a multi-page document into separate files
Select the document you want to split and click on the Split button on the right side of the screen. Type in the names of the extracted documents and select the pages you would like to see in each of these documents. Each document is assigned its own color. Pages can be selected using your mouse or your finger if you are using a touchscreen.
To finalize the process, click Split at the bottom of the screen. Then, you will be able to download the split documents (smaller files), save them in the cloud of your preference or continue editing them in pdfFiller.
The benefits of organizing files digitally
1. Increased productivity
According to Gartner, an average employee spends between 30 minutes and two hours daily searching for misplaced or lost documents. Research suggests more than 90% of an average employee’s time is consumed by data management and record-keeping. Business activities connected with creating, organizing, finding, and analyzing data are the biggest time wasters. Using cloud-based document management solutions and digitizing your company’s workflows can alleviate the pain associated with poor document organization.
2. Improved enterprise-wide data management
According to the AIIM Industry Watch report (2019), 75% of organizations admitted that “getting the right information to the right process worker in context is a problem”. In other words, corporate data was poorly managed in the majority of the companies surveyed. Having a file structure and document naming conventions established enterprise-wide ensures faster document search. Implementing cloud-based document management platforms like pdfFiller can facilitate data access on different levels in an enterprise.
3. Compliant record retention
The previously cited AIIM research suggests that only 15% of organizations have enterprise-level record retention policies. Employees dealing with poorly managed shared drives can’t produce accurate records for data calls, inspections, audits, or requests. Most organizations admit that inconsistent electronic record-keeping results in issues with regulators, auditors, hefty fines, and in some cases, bad publicity. pdfFiller gives organizations tools for legally-compliant record retention for as long as the user’s account is active or is needed to provide services.
4. Transition to a paperless office
Paper-based workflows are not only expensive but also harmful to the environment. An average employee uses more than 10,000 sheets of paper annually per year which costs an enterprise about $100. This sum doubles if you add the ink and toner expenses, time spent looking for documents, printing, scanning, emailing them, etc.
Another serious drawback of any paper-based workflow is the potential for a data security threat. Research suggests that approximately 15% of all business records get lost and 30% of an organization’s time is spent trying to recover them. pdfFiller will help you make a smooth transition to a paperless office while keeping your business records safe and in place.
Try pdfFiller today to enjoy the benefits of a smart filing system and organization!