In last week's blog post, we started a three-part series on centralizing physical records. In the first part we learned that you need a clear understanding of existing practices to develop a standard filing system for the central archive room.
This week we focus on how warehousing and spatial planning can save money and make optimal use of the available storage space in your central archive room.
Note the following:
Vertical filing vs. side storage
Many traditional older storage systems use vertical storage, in which the files are arranged in a pull-out drawer from front to back. This is a very inefficient storage method! A four-foot-deep vertical filing cabinet requires an additional four feet of space in front of the cabinet to accommodate the pull-out. On the other hand, a filing system on the side arranges the files from left to right. This reduces the required extract area to a maximum of the length of a single file folder.
Location of folder registers
File folders with end tabs are labeled on the page, unlike traditional folders that have the tab above. The design of the end tab saves a lot of space. Since the folder label can be read from the side, no pull-out drawers and no cumbersome hanging systems are required, which take up so much space with conventional filing systems. In this way, you can stack more rows of shelves in a certain area.
Since these folders do not have to be at eye level for the labels to be visible, folders with end registers can be saved to a higher position, while the label information is still perfectly readable. The combination of tab folders with color-coded labeling can enable up to seven usable filing lines and increase the available floor space by up to 140 percent.
Mobile vs. Stationary shelves
Mobile shelving systems are on rollers and rails and considerably increase the space required in a central collection. Instead of having an aisle between each row of shelves, a mobile solution only needs one aisle that users can move to access files in a particular row. Fewer aisles mean more space for recordings – up to twice as many, depending on your situation and the type of mobile shelving system you have chosen.
Next week we will complete this series with a post on file management access in a central collection.