reduce cloud clutter

Reducing the Cloud Clutter

Knowing that your business-critical data is safely stored in the cloud definitely helps business owners sleep a little easier at night. But if the organization of your stored content isn’t up to scratch, it can cause heavy frustrations in the day! According to one study, 60% of office professionals spend more time searching for documents than replying to emails or messages.

Sound familiar? It’s pretty frustrating spending hours every week completing the innocuous task of searching for a file. Cloud storage management is particularly important in these days of the remote workforce, where effective collaboration relies on efficient resource sharing.

When organised correctly, cloud storage provides a centralised location that should streamline your workflow instead of hindering it. Today we’re going to give you a few tips on how to do exactly that.

How to Organise Your Cloud Storage

The cloud has revolutionised how we store and work on files, so it’s no wonder cloud storage is one of the most used online applications. But if you want to cut down the amount of time your team spends looking for information, you need a clean and tidy file structure. And this starts with your naming hierarchy.

Have a Standard Naming Structure

Ask ten employees how they’re going to name their files and folders and you’ll get ten different answers. If everyone is doing this, your cloud storage will simply devolve into chaos. A universal folder naming structure that everybody in the organisation sticks twill be a game changer.

For example, you could have a folder for each department. Nested in this could be a folder for projects, with everything named accordingly. This way, everyone quickly learns the paths they have to take or the search words to use to get to the document they need.

Create File and Folder Limits

Having too many folders in your cloud storage is a massive time waster when searching for a document. Everybody knows that feeling of clicking down a rabbit hole of multiple folders nested into each other, eventually getting to the one that houses what you’re after. It’s exasperating, and easily avoided by establishing a couple of ground rules.

Firstly, don’t create a folder if there are fewer than 10 files. No business wants masses of folders with just one or two files in them, and this helps to prevent that happening.

Secondly, put a three-folder depth limit. This keeps that rabbit hole under control! Less folders with more files in each makes finding the right documents easier!

Save it Right the First Time

When you’re working on a document, it’s easy to not think twice and save it in a general folder, even though at the back of your mind you know it’s not the right place for it! Taking a little bit of time to save your documents correctly keeps your cloud storage from getting out of hand.

It only takes a few seconds to navigate to the correct folder where the file should be and save it there. Especially if you’ve implemented the above rules on folder depth!

Use Colour Tags on Folders

Those colour tags on your cloud storage aren’t just for creating a pretty interface! They can be really useful in making a group of documents or files easily recognisable. This helps your brain connect to topics much faster than sifting through the names of folders. For example, make anything to do with Sales blue. Marketing, green. Finance, orange… and so on.

Appoint a Cloud Storage Administrator

Having a team member oversee managing your cloud storage is a great idea. It could be a floating position, meaning everyone gets a chance to really understand the structure of your storage system.

We’d recommend that every week they go through the cloud storage and mop up any unneeded files, delete duplicates and refile anything that’s in the wrong place. This process of organising and culling won’t take long if it’s done regularly, and just keeps everything nice and tidy.

Another good habit for the administrator to do is go through older files and archive one’s that aren’t relevant anymore. Putting them in a big archive folder keeps them out of the way of the active file paths.

Looking for Cloud Storage Solutions?

Smile IT can help get your business setup with a smart, efficient and secure cloud storage platform. Easier collaboration, well-organised file management and less time wasted. Sound good? Get in touch with one of our cloud experts today!

When he’s not writing tech articles or turning IT startups into established and consistent managed service providers, Peter Drummond can be found kitesurfing on the Gold Coast or hanging out with his family!