How I Set Up My Work Files (Brief)

Having posted the screen shot of the top-level file categories for my personal files division yesterday, below are the top level categories for my work files.

As I mentioned yesterday, I’d like to go into more detail about the logic behind the structure and how to set up good file categories and an overall system that doesn’t bug you, but I figure it is better to post something brief and incomplete now and then also do a full version down the road, rather than just do nothing in the interim.

You’ll notice that while my personal file division was organized by area of responsibility, my work files are organized by department. Then, within the department files the sub-files are by area of responsibility for the department.

“Executive Management” means things pertaining to the overall leadership of the organization; it made the most sense to treat that as a department in itself. “Talent” means “HR,” because I think it’s better to look at people as people rather than resources. “BBC,” “BCS,” and “CDG” are related organizations that we work closely with; for simplicity it made sense just to treat those as departments as well.

One last thing on filing for now: It is possible to create a system that doesn’t bug you. I think it was about 5 years or so that I developed the approach I am using, and it hasn’t bugged me since. The actual act of filing is not always fun and I try to keep that to a minimum; but I never find myself having to think hard about where to put anything, discontent with the structure, or unable to find anything quickly.

Here’s the screen shot for my work files:

  • Bobby R

    I wanted to alert you to a typo: “and it hasn’t bugged me sense” should be “and it hasn’t bugged me since.”

  • Matt

    Thank you!

  • Bernie Anderson

    For what it’s worth … I look forward to your continuation of this series. It’s timely for me, as one of my projects slated for later this spring will be to align all of my computer files into a system that works better for me. In other words, it’s timely.

    Great posts! Great site!


  • Linda Payne

    I am just finishing Getting Things Done and have also read your comments in the article “Getting Things Done to the Next Level”.
    I am very interested in any comments you would have about filing. I know this latest post is 2011 so it may not be a good time for you to continue your thoughts. Whenever you do I will be very interested and it will be greatly appreciated!

  • Matt

    Linda: Thanks for reading! I still hope to write a series on filing. I have a bunch of documents, but just need to boil everything down for a blog series.