View Full Version : The fysical part of filing
10-10-2006, 11:58 AM
For filing (general reference filing) David refers to 'plain freestanding files held upright by the metal sliding support in the back of the drawers of .. front opening filing cabinets', while disapproving (detesting...) Pendaflex hanging files.
My problem is that I have no clue of what is meant by free standing files. Does they require punching holes in my documents? Is it flexible?
Could anyone provide me with a picture of such a file that clarifies its fysical properties (interior, exterior)? The set of Davids files doesn't give me enough info: I still cannot see how documents are stored in those.
10-10-2006, 12:46 PM
I interpreted this as simply meaning that you're using your manila file folders without any form of pendaflex hanging file support. What's key is that you have a 'sliding back support' so you can keep the right amount of adjustable support on the back of the files.
I think what's helpful, too, is if you have file cabinet drawers that have a bit of a "side" to them so they can keep the folders square in the drawer.
Hope this helps.
10-11-2006, 05:27 AM
As Friso said, David seems to prefer filing the way it was before pendaflex hanging folders. I have an old filing cabinet at home with metal sides to the drawers and a panel at back of each drawer that adjusts to fit the number of files you have in a drawer. That being said, having that cabinet, I totally understand why pendaflex hanging folders were invented. I have an occasional problem with folders slipping down and disappearing at the bottom of the drawer. Occasionally one folder managers to get filed inside another. To keep enough tension on the folders that they don't slip and flop around, they are too tight together. then I can't comfortably insert items or fully open a folder while it's in place to browse through it for something. I have to list the folder out, deal with it and return it. Just more barriers to getting something filed or found. As you add materials or weed out old materials, you must constantly adjust the tension in the back of the drawer.
I find it much more usable to use unlabeled pendaflex folders and put the labeled manila folders in them. Unfortunately the newer pendaflex folders are deeper and the whole manila folder, label and all, can disappear down inside the pendaflex folder. Fortunately I have a large stock of older folders. the pendaflex folders do consume a non-trivial amount of drawer space, but for me it's worth it.
10-13-2006, 10:59 AM
Thanks for both your replies. Things are getting clearer now.
When using 'David's' files, how easy is it to label the back of the files? Since this is the only visible part of the file (if I understand how you store these files), it needs to be labeled, isn't it? But in my perception those files have a too small back to have a label attached. Correct ? Or do I have still a different picture of filing?
Today I use a system with pending folders in a drawer. Clear labels let me view what's in de folder. I adhere to David's recommendation: one file per folder (but more than one document in a file...). This works fine. The only thing is I need to label both folder and file in case I use folders in meetings etc.
10-13-2006, 11:14 AM
I'm not sure what you mean about labeling the backs of the folders.
When I start a new system, I use alpha divider cards and insert each one in a separate hanging folder. I add files behind each divider until that hanging file is full, and then I add another hanging file and spread them out. It's very simple to add and remove files that way, and the alpha cards keep everything in order.
I don't label the hanging files. If you have lateral filing cabinets, you can get hardware to either hang files all the way across the drawer, or split them up front to back, depending on the width of the drawer.
For our case files (legal environment), we use expanding file pockets, never more than 3 1/2 expansion. This keeps all the subfiles together and you can grab the whole thing at once if you need to. As the file grows, we just keep adding more file pockets.
10-13-2006, 02:07 PM
The best example of labeling files can be found in Jason Womack's photos.
Office Productivity (http://jasonwomack.typepad.com/photos/office_productivity/)
For the files, see the last photo on the page. Click on the photo to see a larger picture.
10-14-2006, 01:30 AM
Hi Ceehjay, many thanks for the picture: worth more than a thousand words! Jason's filing system looks like mine.
This looks like products I saw on the Pendaflex site. Or is this the system David recommands?
10-17-2006, 10:29 AM
I'll toss in a tip that appeared in a DA newsletter some time ago, which I use all the time. Put down a strip of scotch tape on the file folder tab, and then put your file label down over that. This makes the folders re-usable - especially useful for small projects where you really don't need to keep the support paperwork after the project is done.