Files Management: Benefits

The basic objective of a good filing system is to be able to find the record you need quickly and economically, regardless of its format. The goal of a good filing system is to provide quick access to information. 

Files management is integral to records management.  Records Management is the application of systematic control to recorded information.  It is a logical and practical approach to the creation, maintenance, use and disposition of records and, therefore, to the information that those records contain.  Files Management applies records management principles to both paper and electronic records created and used by a single office.  Files management ensures the use of information.  It ensures that records are able to be retrieved when needed.

The purpose of this site is to provide a basic guideline for establishing and maintaining the records of your office by the most efficient and economical means available.

Each University office has the primary legal responsibility for the proper care and management of its records. To meet this responsibility each office should designate a Department Records Authority and a Department Records Coordinator. View this chart for more information.

A well designed filing system:

  • must make filing less difficult, tedious, and unattractive
  • must offer quick and easy filing and retrieval of information with a minimum of wasted time and effort (i.e., 30 second retrieval time)
  • must ensure integrity and continuity of record keeping despite changes in office personnel
  • must have uniform practices
  • must allow for the easy identification and purging of inactive records
  • should provide clear and simple file categories
  • should be expandable and flexible enough to meet everyone's needs

Higher productivity, Lower Costs

Higher productivity and lower costs are the main benefits of good files management.  The right filing system produces important tangible results and eliminates costs associated with poor procedures.

Time savings:

  • faster filing and retrieval of information
  • fewer misfiles
  • higher staff efficiency and productivity

Cost savings:

  • less frequent purchase of filing equipment and supplies
  • less office space used for filing equipment
  • less time spent on filing
  • less likelihood of litigation losses resulting from lost documents
  • less likelihood of lost documents leading to unfavorable audit findings and penalties
  • less costly recovery of vital records

Establishing and maintaining control over files will bring specific benefits:

  • easier training of new personnel
  • expandability and flexibility to meet the needs of the office
  • standard procedures for disposal of obsolete records
  • improved service to clients/public
  • protection of vital records
  • compliance with legal and audit retention requirements