Everyone has paperwork. Everyone can get lost in it too. Here are some simple steps to get your office sorted and keep you in control of it.
1. Purge - de-clutter, empty, shred, get rid of everything that you don’t need or want. One area at a time.
2. Gather and redistribute - gather up every item that isn’t where it belongs and put it where it does.
3. Establish work ‘zones’ - there are usually 3 main spaces in an office: 1 workspace / desk; 2 reference area with filing, cabinet, shelves, binders; and, 3 supply area with shelves or drawers.
4. Close proximity - position the equipment and supplies that you use most within reach.
5. Label - shelves, bins, baskets, drawers. This is for you and anyone else who might use the office.
6. Filing system - what can your store digitally? Are you duplicating files? You may be able to eliminate some of the files and folders you’ve used in the past.
7. Clear your work desk - remove everything, clean it thoroughly and put back only those items that are essential for daily use.
8. Organise your desktop and drawers - use desktop organizers and trays. Put items used together in the same drawer space, eg. stamps with envelopes, sticky pads with notepads. Use drawer organizers for little items like paper clips, tacks. Use a separate drawer for personal items.
9. Clear the piles - go through the pile (a little at a time if necessary) and put it in the appropriate place or dump it.
10. Sort mail - sort it as soon as you get it, into trays: Action, Read, File, Delegate.
11. Assign discard dates - mark on files or documents when they can be tossed or shredded.
Straighten your desk at the end of the day so you have a clean start for the next.
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