The end of the financial year is a great time to get on top of your archiving. While you’re clearing last year’s stock why not clear out last year’s duplicate files or expired documents? Start the new financial year on the right foot with an organised and functional document management system or even clear out your archiving space entirely with off-site storage.
Here are the top 5 tips we think you should know before you start preparing your archives for EOFY.
1. Check the age of your files
Despite both being kept in dark dank, storage for years on end, files don’t age like fine wine. They age like everything else and one day you’ll need to get rid of them. Most financial documents have an expiry date of 5 years (some for 7 years) anything older than this can usually be securely destroyed by a Document Destruction specialist. Which leads us into tip number 2
2. Cull your archives
Your archives contain all the most important information about your business, your staff and your clients and customers. It’s not just important to protect this information it’s also legally mandated. The Privacy Act of 1988 stipulates that client and patient information be disposed of securely and promptly as soon as it is no longer directly required by the organisation.
You’d be surprised how many documents you are storing which may not even require any further record keeping. And so performing an archive cull is a great way of cutting down on the number of archives you store. This can be done by yourself or you can enlist an archivist to come on site and do it for you. They generally include a secure destruction option as well.
3. Assess your archiving space
Once you have cleared out all non essential archiving you can assess your space and determine how much you require for your slimmed down archives. Make sure there is enough space for this financial year’s filing and make sure you have plenty of boxes at the ready.
4. Keep Just one copy of your files.
Before you box up the latest financial year’s files, ensure that you only have copy of each file stored. This will significantly reduce the amount of space you require.
5. Clearly mark your boxes
Ensure you mark your archive boxes very clearly with the financial year in which they were created. Also clearly state which part of the document is kept in that particular box. This will greatly reduce the amount of time you’re spending on searching for documents.
6. Stay Calm, Stay Focused
Take a deep breath, you can do this!