Category Suggestions for Organizing Business Files

Organizing business files saves time and frustration during daily operations.
Organizing business files saves time and frustration during daily operations. (Image: empty files image by Ivonne Wierink from

Dividing your business files into categories is a big help in organizing your office and making it run more efficiently on a daily basis. Separate your business files by specific categories, such as management, customer data, sales orders and accounting, then subdivide those categories. This enables you to find items more quickly and keep related items together, saving you frustration, time and money.

Operations and Management

You will probably need separate categories for business credit lines, insurance, accounts receivable, accounts payable, taxes and payroll, as well as for employees and company benefits. Also create categories for budgets, such as for marketing and advertising, to separate daily operating expenses from funds allocated for special promotional campaigns. MrsCleanUSA recommends using category dividers in hanging file folders, then subdividing them with interior file folders.

Customer Data

Divide customer files into categories of existing and new customers. They should contain information such as the billing contact, address, phone number, email, website and credit account numbers, and should be subdivided and color-coded so you can update information more easily and frequently. Create a separate sub-category for recurrent customer billing statements, which helps track customer re-orders and fast-selling items. These files are especially important to the bookkeeping department, which compiles and tracks operating data such as credits, debits and expenses.

Accounting Files

Sales data is crucial to the success of a small business. Keep close track of sales orders, delivery dates, shipped orders and payments received. Subdivide this category by product type, quantity, color and style, as well as customer re-orders. Separate delivery dates from shipped order. Subdivide also by shipping format, such as truck or air, which enables you to estimate and verify delivery times.

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