It is so easy to wind up with a cluttered office space. Receipts and catalogs, statements and business cards always wind up all over the place, the piles are never ending. However, it isn’t just paper clutter that makes a mess of many offices. There’s lots of digital clutter to sort through. Being able to sort files into things that can be deleted right away from those that need separated in to folders is often a task that gets put on the back burner with many entrepreneurs and small business owners, because it is such a time consuming task. It’s also something that should be the last thing on your mind, with all of your other pressing responsibilities.
Clutter actually slows down your rate of productivity. If you’re spending all your time just looking for what you need in that mess of documents, you’re wasting precious work time.
Cleaning up the mess and getting organized can also help save space and for some, save money. Say an office has to rent out an extra room just for their records and files. If they would make digital copies and store electronically, they just freed up all that space and they don’t need to rent the room. Voila, money.
Here is a list of four ways you can declutter your office space. Let’s get started!
1. Get to it Before it Gets to You
It seems like such a waste of time to work on something that isn’t an immediate problem. That goes for decluttering the office when it “isn’t that bad” just as it does for other tasks you might put off for later. However, getting to that little bit of clutter up front, is an investment in the future. Stay on top of it and you won’t have to dedicate a big chunk of time to tackling the monster mess.
2. Make Time to Organize
You should make sure to set some time aside in your schedule for routine organization. Comb through your emails and documents, check out the papers and files you have laying around and decide what’s trash and what isn’t and overall just get everything back to the way it should be. Having this time in your regular schedule, whether it be once a month or every other week, make sure you have this time blocked out, just as you would for any other projects.
3. Save the Receipts and Keep them Safe
It is entirely up to you, whether you keep a paper filing system or you digitize all of your receipts. Something you should keep in mind is that the ink on the receipts will fade after a while and won’t be readable after that. Having digital backup of everything will ensure your safety in the event of an audit several years down the road.
4. Figure Out What Works for You
There is no right or wrong system. If you find something that works for you, do that. Don’t stress and try to do it a way that someone else prefers. The entire point of organizing everything is to reduce the amount of stress when you’re working by ensuring that you can find what you need when you need it. Even if nobody else understands your filing system, as long as you do, stick with it.