The importance of labeling and indexing for business records storage


Recently my family moved to our dream house. We packed up within a couple weeks and we are in the process of unpacking everything very, very slowly. As each day unfolds I am constantly asking my wife where items are. ‘Where’s the phone?’ ‘Where are my shoes?’ The questions go on… After several frustrated and heated exchanges, I realized we brought it on ourselves. As I searched for my razor, it got me thinking about the importance of categorizing, labeling and indexing our boxes which was a step we obviously missed. Naturally I found it ironic that working in the ‘industry’ this was an important step that even our clients who take advantage of our records management services miss or skip because they don’t understand the importance.

There were boxes that needed to be labeled with very generic information, Family Room/Books or Master Bedroom/His/Shirts, but then there were boxes that needed an itemized list of the contents: Kitchen/knife set/waffle iron/juicer or Office/current bills – Open First. I also realized that we have a benefit our clients don’t; we will unpack all of the boxes eventually. Clients pack boxes and generically label them, Suzanne’s Desk, Office Paperwork or Miscellaneous, with the hope that they won’t have to touch it. Our clients won’t have the luxury of emptying those boxes and probably won’t destroy them because the contents are so generic. This puts companies at risk and at some point they will have to pay to correctly identify their collection.

Be smart and accurately identify your records when you pack them and you won’t be asking yourself, ‘Where did I pack the deodorant?’ What has your experience been? Please share your comments.

Randall Sanders
Senior Manager of Client Support
Archive Systems, Inc.
Changing the way the world manages documents

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