Technology is evolving so quickly that one method will be phased out faster than you can … well, see? It’s happened again. As the paper world slowly morphs to the digital world, which is probably so slow because of the learning curve, people will develop systems that will overlap, and may ultimately confuse the flow of information.
If you’re a meticulous record keeper, and you’re tired of a desktop full of messy files and icons, and you don’t want to deal with paper anymore, AND your brokerage doesn’t offer a transaction management system that automatically stores your documents online, it may be time to employ the simplicity of Windows Folders to manage your digital filing cabinet.
With a simple folder structure and a consistent system of naming conventions, you can be assured that all of your information will be where you expect it to be.
Don’t be confused by this term. It’s simply how you name and organize your folders.
How I Do It
This is so simple, yet some think it to be so complicated. Folders and folder heirarchy has been around since the early days of DOS (don’t know what that is? No worries.) Windows allows you to create a folder, then create a folder inside a folder, and so on, and so on.
On my desktop, I have a folder called Transact. In that folder, there are sub-folders. Each sub-folder is named after the client. I call these “client folders.”
Inside one of the client folders is a list of properties that have been tied to this client. I refer to these as “property folders.”
Inside each property folder is a set of folders that are typically the same every time. I call these by their label. For instance, in 1234 Overthere Street, there’s a folder for all of the photos that I take of the property. There’s a folder for listing documents, and there is a folder for each offer that I receive on the property.
The key to successfully organizing your digital documents if you don’t have an online transaction management system is to have a solid understanding of how you can organize folders in Windows (by the way, this works on a Mac too) and apply your own personal touch to the folders you create.
By creating a system that you understand, it will always be consistent, and you’ll learn how to quickly access the information that you need when you need it. After you have your own system, simply create a shortcut to that folder, and you have a quick way to pull up every piece of digital information related to your real estate business.
To top it off, you can apply an online file sharing and collaboration tool called a “cloud” like Soonr.com, which allows you to install a program that will monitor your Transact folder and all folders inside that folder, and subsequently upload and synchronize all of the files contained therein to the soonr.com server. This gives you global access to your organizational system.
Get organized today.