If you use Outlook folders to file customer, project or case/matter emails, here is a simple naming system that will help you both file and find emails later.
Your folder name should contain the following 3 parts:
Client Name: Needs no explanation but remember that the same client may have multiple projects.
Project/Matter Number (Optional): Many firms assign unique numbers to each project/matter. This number is then used in all correspondence etc. related to that project.
Project/Matter Description: A brief description of the project/matter
I recommend using those 3 part in the order shown below.
CLIENT_NAME PROJECT_NUMBER PROJECT_DESCRIPTION
For example: Acme Corporation 2017-01 Wile E Coyote Vs Roadrunner
(If you don’t use project/case/matter numbers, just leave out the project number part e.g. Acme Corporation – Wile E Coyote Vs Roadrunner)
Naming your folders in this way provides some very specific advantages for both when you want to file and find your emails later.
1. You can see all projects/matters for a particular client together in next to each other (since the folders are shown alphabetically in Outlook).
2. It is easy to identify what is in a folder even if you don’t know the project/matter number since the folder name contains both the client’s name and description.
3. If you use an Outlook addon such as QuickFile to search for folders, folders are much easier to find because you have many ways to search including the client name, project/matter number or any word from its description.
I hope that this short article helps you to make your email folders and more importantly your emails better organized. If you have many folders then we also recommend QuickFile for Outlook.