My current set-up is as follows:
All my clients’ data are saved in the user>windows XP folder>business folder>clientname. I have nested further folders within clientname to house accounts, correspondence, payroll and Tax documents. Documents are saved with an appropriate filename and date for easy identification.
The windows XP folder is accessible from VMware Fusion using MS Windows XP programs. My documents are mainly text, pdf, spreadsheets and a few image files. This setup is working OK but I really want to go paperless (as much as possible) and now testing DTP Office (a second attempt). I have a Scan-snap S510M.
I have read the user guide as well as the items on the forum but I am not much wiser. How would you advise me on an appropriate setup? Thanks.
I switched from PC to Apple not too long ago and am still finding my way.
When you say you want to go paperless, what exactly are you trying to achieve? It seems as if that is what you’ve accomplished to a certain degree with XP since you probably have scanned many of the client document records. DTPO could easily be set up in the same manner, i.e., nested folders, with the added benefit of being able to import emails and attachments. (Which I think is the way I would still do it rather than dumping everything into top level folders. You could do that and still find relevant client data because of AI, but it would be a mess from an accountant’s p.o.v.) And since you mention a scanner, it seems you still have paper from clients that you need to get into any system, rather than being able to conduct all of your work with clients electronically, e.g., pdf fill-in forms.
If you are looking for a different way to manage your practice, i.e., tying all of your client material to specific client contact or client/business contact, you may want to look at a dedicated CRM, which gives you that capability.
Or it’s quite possible I’m misunderstood your question and the issue you’re trying to deal with and that my answer is totally off-the-mark here.
There are lots of papers which can be put into archive (not really needed) or stored away (possibly needed for reference purposes). Specific documents like payroll records could be scanned and filed in a named folder under a suitable filename. There is no need to be able to search within the data. However with regards to clients’ affairs, correspondence with clients and with the tax authorities still need to be scanned and could not be arbitrarily split by date for archiving. As a result, the paper files are fairly bulky and difficult to locate required information. Hence the need to have a digital copy of the clients’ folders (nested) to extract information efficiently.
The nested structure seems most logical for me but I could be very wrong. I don’t want to start on something and then having to change things mid-stream as I have to then a lot of off-site backup to do (again).
So, if I have a database, within which I have nested clients and nested data-type folders, that could work (as I am doing now outside DTPO)?
No, I don’t think you are wrong. For your purposes, using DTPO in a similar way to your current process would work very well. In addition, the AI feature will allow you to easily locate a specific piece of correspondence within seconds. I think you are on the right track with the nested approach.