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Your Guide To Off-Site Record Storage

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These days, so much data lives in the digital world that it's easy to forget about paper and physical files. However, for many industries, "real" documents are still a big part of everyday life--which means storage is a constant question.

Here's how self-storage can be the answer to your record woes!

FAQs: Self-Storage for Physical Records

Whether you're new to self-storage or have been using it for years, one thing's for sure: You can do just about anything if you choose the right unit. When it comes to physical records, self-storage is the perfect solution--but there are a few things to consider first.

Check out these FAQs to get started:

Which Industries May Need Physical Storage?

Although almost any company can benefit from a little extra room, some industries have a uniquely pressing need to store and protect physical documents. Here are a few examples:

  • Industries with lots of notes: Not everyone works the same way. If you scribble thoughts on paper and keep all kinds of physical documents to help brainstorm, create products, or work with your clients, these notes are likely worth keeping, meaning you may need off-site records storage.
  • Industries with physical client data: Some companies are required to keep physical documents related to client background, personal information, financial data, and more. It's up to you to keep and protect that data, which means off-site records storage is especially important.
  • Industries with drafts, blueprints, and other important documents: If you're in the business of creating just about anything, you likely have physical files to make that creation possible. Whether you want to keep these files for reference or just want something to look back on later, off-site records storage is the solution you need.

What Are The Benefits?

The most obvious benefit of off-site records storage is compliance; some industries are legally required to keep physical files for a certain period of time. Other benefits include:

  • Simplicity: If you use self-storage for your records, you have one location for everything and one flat price--which means you get to keep things simple.
  • Space: Most businesses just don't have room for file cabinets and stacks of paper. Off-site storage solves that problem and gives you your space back.
  • Access: When you have the right self-storage unit, you can access your files whenever necessary. That means you can get information, make copies, or retrieve files for audits at your leisure.

What Regulations Should You Review?

If your industry has strict records storage regulations, it's essential to know exactly what you're expected to do. For example, you need to know:

  • How you should secure those files.
  • How long you need to keep them.
  • How often you need to be able to retrieve them (and for what).
  • Whether you're allowed to have digital copies kept on-site.

How Should You Choose a Unit?

There are a few big things to keep in mind when choosing a self-storage unit for your records. Here's a quick overview:

  • Security: Are there cameras, locks, lights, and other security features? Where is the self-storage facility located, and how accessible is it from the outside?
  • Climate control: Are climate-controlled units available?
  • Accessibility: Can you reach your files 24/7?
  • Business center: Does your self-storage facility have an on-site business center?
  • Supplies: Does the facility offer moving boxes, tape, and vans to help move your documents and file cabinets?

Organizing Your Unit for Off-Site Records Storage

Once you've double-checked all those regulations and chosen the perfect unit, it's time to decide how you'll organize your off-site records storage space. Here are a few quick tips to keep in mind:

#1: Bring Your Storage Solutions

Do you have file cabinets? What about shelves, totes, or boxes? If so, remember to bring them--even if you aren't currently using them. These storage solutions help organize your space as you get more files, which helps keep your unit neat and capable of scaling to meet your needs.

#2: Consider Locks

Some file cabinets allow you to lock certain drawers. Consider keeping your most important or sensitive files there--because, although your storage facility should have plenty of security, another level of protection never hurts.

#3: Think About Your Needs

If you have files you won't need to access very often, put those in the back. The more often you need to reach a document, the closer to the front it should be.

In conclusion, self-storage is the perfect solution for off-site records storage. It doesn't just keep you compliant; it keeps you flexible, organized, and free to use your business space for--well--business.

Contact us today to get started with self-storage!