Organize your digital clutter


by New Day Producers

Posted on January 11, 2013 at 12:21 PM

According to the National Association of Professional Organizers, the average employee spends 400 hours searching for paper documents each year.  On top of that, 80% of the papers we file are never referenced again, so we don't even need that big pile of stuff.  Elizabeth Bowman, founder of the organization and productivity consulting firm, Innovatively Organized, offers some tips for de-cluttering our digital mess.

3 Ways to Organize Your Inbox:

  1. Have a clean desk policy for your computer desktop.
  2. Plan ahead, define and stick to a naming convention for your digital files.
  3. Keep a tidy email inbox by creating action folders.

Top 3 Ways to Organize Your Desk:
1. Place the items you use most within reach

  • Create a semi-circle around you when seated at your desk to use optimal space.
  • Take into account if you’re left or right handed and place objects on your desk accordingly.
  • Use vertical space to your advantage.
  • Install shelves or bulletin boards above your desk to maximize the vertical space near your work space.

2. Less clutter = More productivity; set time aside to organize

  • Decide what you should keep, donate, throw away or put somewhere else.
  • Create zones to store similar items and categories together.
  • Take measurements and stick to using containers that you know will fit in your zones

3. Think paperless; organize digital clutter, too

  • Set up a desktop scanner.
  • Start using virtual notebooks.
  • Syncing files to the cloud is key.
  • Organize your email inbox; Use the “2-minute rule” and make quick decisions to filter emails.
  • Create a folder for “End of Day” and “End of Week” emails to prioritize your responses.

For more information about Innovatively Organized or to schedule a consultation, visit