How Do You Organize And Find Your Electronic Documents?

You've Scanned Your Documents. Now How Do You Organize, Find, and Protect Them?

  • How should you name your files? What is the best folder structure to use?
  • How do you find your documents once you've filed them away?
  • How do you keep your documents safe and secure?
Paperless Document Organization Guide
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Finding Your Paperless Documents Doesn't Have To Be Hard

I created in 2008, and by far the #1 question that DocumentSnap readers like you ask is: “Now that I have scanned my files, what do I do with them? How do I make sure I can find them again?”

With physical paper, when something is a mess at least we can see we have a problem. With digital files, a lot of times we don't even realize that we have a problem until… we have a problem. Until we are looking for a document that we need and we can't find it.

Scanning Is Only Half The Battle

Going paperless is about much more than just scanning in your paper.

In fact, with a good scanner, the scanning is the easy part. Once you’ve started, the challenge becomes: how do you organize your electronic documents so that you can find them when you need them?

I love this quote by awesome DocumentSnap reader John Yaegar. He wrote me once, and put it perfectly:

Going paperless sounds great but I don’t want to trade one physical paper mess for a digital mess.

The information online about going paperless and organizing your documents is conflicting, doesn’t work with your comfort level, or is crazy technical.

Some people say use this software, others say that software is no good, others say don’t use software at all. How do you know which way to go?

Find What You Need When You Need It

The other day I was working on a blog post and I received an IM from my bookkeeper (productivity tip: don't add your bookkeeper to your instant messenger). Here is what she asked:

Hey Brooks, back in Dec 2013 Apple gave you a $75 account credit on the purchase of your iPad. Do you know if you have used that up yet?

My first thought: "I can barely remember what I had for lunch yesterday. How can I remember December 2013?"

Back before I became "Mr. Paperless" (yes, this is what people call me at conferences), investigating this would have involved digging through my file cabinet or folders on my computer for Apple receipts and trying to find where I used this credit.

In reality, it took about 20 seconds to find the documents on my computer. I did one search that found:

  • Documents that are PDFs
  • With Apple in the name
  • With "gift card" in the text of the document

Boom. I shared the PDFs with her, she downloaded them, and I was back to writing within a minute or so.

Sounds easy, but how do you get there?

Introducing the Paperless Document Organization Guide

Take Action Your Way

  • 1

    Written Manual In Plain English

    I call it the "big PDF" that takes you through everything you need to know about organizing your paperless documents. You can view it on any device, and it includes screenshots and workflow diagrams. It's written in easy to follow, friendly English. I am a geek, but I try not to write like one.

  • 2

    Audio Interviews With Readers And Experts

    I have interviewed DocumentSnap readers like yourself to ask them how they went paperless. What were their struggles? How did they overcome them? There are also interviews with lawyers, a bookkeeper, and Professional Organizers. Learn how to go paperless the right way.

  • 3

    Video Screencasts

    I recorded my screen and demonstrate step-by-step how to do some of the more technical parts of going paperless. I also show you how I use Evernote, and let you watch "over my shoulder" as I do my paperless processing.

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The Big PDF


Your PDOG guide and videos are just fabulous! You truly have great skills for explaining this stuff clearly and succinctly. I work as a digital organizer and help people everyday to go paperless. I've loved your blog forever and am happy to have finally purchased the PDOG! I'm learning a lot and also learning some great ways of explaining these topics to others. Thank you!

Lilli Weisz

What's Included?

The Paperless Document Organization Guide consists of a detailed written manual complimented by a series of interviews. The interviews (available in audio files and written transcripts) tell the stories of how DocumentSnap readers just like you successfully organize their electronic documents, as well as expert advice from professionals.

Also included are detailed videos that you can either watch online or download to your computer or mobile device. They take you step by step through some of the more technical parts of setting up a paperless system. There is even one that takes you step-by-step through my paperless workflow.

  • Downloadable EBook

    Covers the key parts of organizing your electronic documents. Compares the most popular software packages and cloud services. In PDF and EPUB formats.

  • Expert & Reader Interviews

    4 interviews by DocumentSnap readers like you that have gone paperless, and 3 interviews by Professional Organizers who help clients with this stuff every day.

  • Step-By-Step Video

    Learn how I use Evernote, how to find your documents, how to be secure, and how to use some of my favorite software packages.

  • Workflow Diagrams

    See visually how the moving parts of a paperless workflow all fit together.

  • Action Items

    Every section has action items, so you know exactly what you need to do to move your project forward.

  • Get Help And Encouragement

    Ask questions and share successes in the private online group just for our community.

BROOKS IS JUST THE BEST. Worth every penny! I just wish I had a person like Brooks for every area of my life.

- Janine W.

What Will You Actually Learn?

  • How should you name your files and what should your folder structure be?
  • How do you find your documents once you've filed them?
  • What are the pros and cons of each major Mac and Windows software package, and who should buy which one?
  • Should you store your documents in the cloud? If so, where?
  • How do you handle receipts? How about business cards?
  • How do you keep your documents safe and secure?
  • How have others gone paperless, and how do Professional Organizers recommend that you do things?

Download The Materials Instantly (If you want to)

I believe that if you buy something, you own it and should be able to take it with you. You're welcome to read the materials, listen to the interviews, and watch the videos online if you'd like. Or you can download them to your computer and take them with you.

What Do Others Have To Say?

Very simple practical "how-to" manual that is most helpful. Thanks!

Barry P.

Thank you, your books and guide is invaluable. They have helped me learn to become more organized.

Jim J.

Just wanted to say.. THANK YOU for your great resource! With the help of your guides, I have set up my new scanner workflow and begun the process. It feels SO GOOD!!

Rachel C.

An invaluable guide to this otherwise daunting process.

Marc S.

Here's What You Get When You Invest Today:

  • Complete Guide And Resources

    You’ll get the Guide, the workflow diagrams, the interviews, and the videos.

  • Access To The Private Group

    Ask questions, share successes, get support.

  • Priority Responses

    If you are going through the materials and you find yourself stuck, just email (or post in the Private Group) and I’ll get back to you ASAP. PDOG customers go to the top of the queue.

  • Your Guide To Paperless Action

    Action steps so you can get started right away.

All payments are processed securely on our SSL encrypted website.

Take advantage of my 60 day Guarantee.

If for some unlikely reason the  Paperless Document Organization Guide doesn’t end up being right for you, just let me know. I’ll do my best to help you out, and/or provide a super fast refund.

Choose Your Preferred Paperless Package

  • The Big PDF Guide
  • 4 Audio Reader Interviews
Add To Cart
  • The Big PDF Guide
  • 4 Audio Reader Interviews
  • 4 Professional Organizer/Lawyer Interviews
  • 7 Video Screencasts showing how to search for documents, how to secure your documents, how to use popular software, and how I use Evernote
Add To Cart
  • The Big PDF Guide
  • 4 Audio Reader Interviews
  • 4 Professional Organizer/Lawyer Interviews
  • 7 Video Screencasts showing how to search for documents, how to secure your documents, how to use popular software, and how I use Evernote
  • My Workflow Video - Look over my shoulder as I scan and process my documents
  • BONUS: The Paperless Action Plan. The complete recordings, exercises, and handouts from the latest session of the Paperless Action Plan (A $77 value)
Add To Cart

Thanks so much for reading.

I really appreciate you taking the time to learn about the Paperless Document Organization Guide, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed creating it for you.

If you have any questions at all, please don't hesitate to let me know.

To your paperless success,

Brooks Duncan