The Waste Management Staple for Food Truck Festivals

recyclable waste containers for food truck festivals

With the success of food trucks come food truck festivals, engaging foodies in neighborhoods across America, and sometimes becoming large scale events with live music and a variety of vendors. With so many participants the issue of waste management usually becomes a major part of the event planning, involving a crew of workers emptying community waste containers through the duration of the festival. With so much waste, however, the volume usually surpasses the capacity of standard park or city receptacles. Even if more temporary waste containers are added, the need to regularly empty those containers during the event and retrieving, cleaning and storing those containers after the event becomes a major task for any festival planner.

A New Green Solution Makes Festival Waste Management Easy

The Recyclable Waste Containers from Bankers Box are disposable in themselves. This means no need for continuous emptying. Each container is a recyclable container that can be removed in its entirety from the event site and disposed of environmentally.

recyclable waste container

Key Waste Container Value Points for Event Planners

  • Strong handles make the containers easy to lift and move
  • Easy assembly-each container assembles in minutes
  • A 4 point cinch holds any liners in place
  • Bins may come with lids indicating different contents for each container
  • Different sizes offer versatility

 

 

Know the Four Stages of Your Office Files and Always Stay Organized

Bankers Box document life cycle

The documents in your business actually have a life cycle, passing through different stages of development. Understanding these phases gives you a better grip on records organization for your business, improves overall workplace productivity and gives you the peace of mind of an orderly office.

Stage 1: Active Files

Active files are always in use, need to be  kept close at hand and play a daily and often critical role in your workplace.  Active files are never stored or archived, of course, yet they still need to remain organized so that in the flurry of a bustling office they do not become lost or accidentally discarded.

Active File Solutions

Depending on the number of active files used, different types of filing systems keep records accessible and organized.

Open Sorters for Shared Active Files

Sorters display critical files openly for shared office use, while labelled shelves on the sorter maintain organization. Policies regarding shared active files may include a sign in and sign out process to track important documents around the office.

Bankers Box sorters for active files

Desktop Organizers Keep Active Files Handy

If files are not shared, a desktop organizer can provide easy and quick accessibility for specific documents used exclusively by certain employees. These types of organizers also offer the flexibility for managing different document types from binders of information to folders of multi-page records, to single page documents.

active file organizers

Managing the “In-Between” Nature of Semi-Active Files

Semi-active documents are those that are no longer vital to the everyday operations of the business, yet need to be retained for legal reasons. These types of documents are the most likely to become lost or accidentally discarded as their lack of importance to everyday business puts them “out of sight and out of mind” until an incident occurs in which they are required and they are nowhere to be found.

Basic and Extra Space Saving Systems for Semi-Active Files

Storage for those types of files still keeps them accessible, yet out of the way, most likely in a records room or in an office.

Only have a few files? Use the basic space-saving solutions that stack two units high for desk side or in the back of an office for infrequent access and storage.

semi-active file storage

Have lots of semi-active files? Use an extra spacing-saving solution, stacking 5 units high, storing quite a few semi-active files and always keeping them ready for unexpected and urgent office needs.

semi-active file drawer system

Archival Records Storage

Archival documents lose their semi-active urgency yet still have importance and need to be retained long-term. These may include tax documentation, employee records, including past employees, and long-term legal documents such as contracts.

Archival records may be stored on or off-site. Using the flexibility of storage boxes allows easy access to these files even though they are in storage. The lightweight design also allows the boxes to be easily transported and stacked , whether in a large records room or in a storage unit. They can be labelled for quick identification when they need to be opened up as well.

The average business purchases up to 12 of these Bankers Boxes a year to archive important documents. Maintaining a retention policy helps keep these documents from simply taking up space without a purpose. Know what files are put in archival storage, how long they have been there and when it is determined that they should be destroyed, especially if they contain any confidential information.

Records Destruction

Most documents reach the document destruction stage. Here are the list of the most common documents, outlined by the IRS, that are ready to be shredded by a business after archival storage.*

  • Business Income Tax Returns and Supporting Documents.-7 years
  • Employee Tax Records- 4 years
  • Human Resources Files 7-10 years
  • Bank account and credit card statements- 7 years
*IRS http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p583.pdf

 

 

Twelve Flexible File Storage Categories for Your Small Business

 

Categories for File Organization

Records storage may seem an incidental part of your small business operation. But flexibility in records management plays an important role in the scale of your business.  Just think of the smaller space of your offices and how a sudden surge in business means more paper records and the need to fill up your limited space with bulky filing cabinets. File boxes offer a more flexible option, as they can be stacked, stored and transported quickly and easily as your business needs change. Providing a box for each category of your business paperwork also creates a self-contained and highly organized file that can moved to a back office or to off-site storage with ease.

Here are twelve box categories to keep your business nimbly organized.

Accounting

Create and fill this box with sales and expense info including balance sheets and cash flow statements.

Banking

This box contains cancelled checks, bank statements, deposit slips and loan documents

Contracts

Keep all of your business contracts in this box including those for equipment leases and purchase agreements. You may also include work-for-hire contacts joint venture agreements.

Corporate Documents

If your business is incorporated you will need a box for articles of incorporation, bylaws and shareholder records such as minutes and consents.

Business Forms

This box is specially essential for accountants and attorneys who use standards forms daily. You may want to include sales agreements, tax forms, purchase order forms and employee applications here.

IPO

If you work with intellectual property, even on a small scale, you need to stay organized. A box containing trademark applications, patents,  licenses and non-disclosure agreements go in this file.

Marketing and Advertising

If you are promoting your business, you will need to keep records of your marketing brochures, past ads for print and web, press releases and other materials.  You may need to refer back to this file as you continue to market your company to see what produced the best ROI.

Permits and Licenses

The documentation to operate your business needs its own file. Use this box to keep operating permits, business licenses and other documents that you may need quick and easy access to for legal verification.

Last Minute Deductions for Your Business

 

office tax deductions

As the new year approaches, it’s a good time to review any office needs so you can add those deductions as business expenses. Here are some suggestions to improve productivity for your workplace while saving money during tax season.

Upgrading Your Office Shredder

Have you noticed that you can’t make a phone call while shredding because it’s so noisy, or perhaps you are constantly tearing jammed paper from the shredder’s jaws. Or when emptying the shredder bin, you notice that the paper isn’t quite shredded, more half-eaten? These are all signs that it is time for a new office shredder.  Upgrade to an office shredder that is jam proof, quiet and sure to turn documents to dust before 2017 starts. Shredder tax deductions.

best size paper shredder

 

Adding New Business Machines to the Office

Every time there is an important presentation and you need fifty bound PowerPoints, your first thought is usually that this is an occasional need so you might as well just take the project to your local print shop for binding. If you find yourself saying this often, then you may be throwing money away on expensive outsourced binding costs when you can do it quickly and easily yourself.

Pick out a reasonably priced binding machine and create impressive presentations for every big meeting. Plus, it’s an easy business write-off. Binding Machine tax deductions.

comb binding for business

The same goes for those pesky laminating tasks you sometimes need. If you calculated all the costs accrued every time when you needed laminated handouts for an event or laminated badges for a trade show, you would realize how much you would save with the minor cost of an office laminating machine, which is tax deductible. Laminating Machine tax deductions.

2015 Starlet2_Plus_P_R

Flexible Storage Solutions

Bankers Box tax deduction

As your business grows, so does the amount of paper records you may have to store. Your initial consideration may be metal filing cabinets, which are bulky and take up a lot of space. But more importantly steel cabinets aren’t flexible, offering solid but rigid records storage.

With Bankers Box file boxes, you can easily add more boxes as your business grows, move them to back rooms or easily take them to outside storage units without a lot of fuss. As some of your files get outdated, you can easily discard unneeded boxes. The perfect storage solution for any small business and an ideal deductible business cost: Bankers Box Tax Deductions.

Santa’s Workshop Increases Productivity for Holiday Season

 

Santa's management strategy

As the Christmas season grows more demanding each year, Santa’s Workshop strives to continually improve efficiency and productivity. New products have been introduced to minimize fatigue and injury in the workshop, as well as streamline the operation overall.

Elves Turn to Ergonomics for Admin Duties

“With a lot of toys, comes a lot of data,” says Santa. “All that information has to be processed.”  In the administrative offices of the workshop, elves complained of back pain, wrist pain and neck strain, leading to lost productivity and days out of the workshop recovering. Santa implemented company-wide back rests for all admin elves as well as the latest in office keyboard managers to reduce incidents of wrist pain.  Also the latest and greatest monitor arms put screens at the proper height and distance from elves to make computing duties easier.

Improving Workshop Air Quality Concerns

“Elves aren’t immune to colds and flu, and being at the North Pole doesn’t help,” Santa indicated. He implemented a commercial air purification system to keep the workshop free of airborne germs. The system features a true HEPA filter, which  captures 99.97% of airborne contaminants including viruses and allergens. The activated carbon filter also reduces odors, which is helpful for those elves stationed near the reindeer stables.

Archiving Past Holidays-Storing Records On-Site at North Pole

As a global one-night only distributor, Santa found reviewing past performance crucial for future productivity. Storing all past archives off-site led to long delays in records retrieval, “especially when you are headquartered at the North Pole,” indicates Santa. “It got to the point where we were just stuffing records in stockings and toy chests. That’s no good.” Converting to on-site archiving reduced costs and made records readily available for review.

Naughty List Record Destruction

Santa’s Naughty & Nice spreadsheet is an ever-changing dynamic.  “Those who were once naughty and now are nice don’t deserve that bad record following them around.” Santa explains.  “We keep auto feed shredders at every list review station for maximum identity theft protection. Because they are automatic, productivity is increased as the elves spend less time shredding and more time making toys.”

Three Easy Steps to Year End Records Organization

bankers box year end organizing

As the new year approaches, tax time may be the only thing on your mind, but taking the chance to reorganize can help you feel more in control and ready to take on your taxes. Here are three steps  you can take to get yourself organized and ready for 2017.

Review the complete line of year end storage solutions: Storage Boxes for Year End Organization

Purge

Files becomes disorganized mostly because we are afraid to throw things away. To make this step easier, make two piles-definitely throw away and maybe throw away. Any files 7 years or older can be thrown. If you are not sure about a particular document, keep it in the maybe file for now.

Restructure

The structure of any file system is not set in stone. We all have special areas of our business that need files and no set template is going to be completely satisfactory. After the purging stage, your current filing structure may be just fine. However if you do need to rethink your system here are some questions to ask yourself:

 Are Current File Categories Growing too Big?

For example you may have started a file entitled employees, only to find that current employees and past employee records were making the file too massive. Breaking down a single category into sub files can take the burden out of one file.

The same question can be asked in reverse. Are there some sub-category files that you thought would grow, but may only contain a few documents. You may want to merge this file with another smaller category to keep things  from getting too complex.

Remember that maybe throw file? Go through it now to reconsider the documents you may want to keep. In light of a new file structure, some might get filed in new categories or simply tossed once see with more organized insight.

Archive

Finally, it’s time to archive your files from around two years ago. Clearly label your boxes or drawers with the date.  Leave out last year’s documents to get ready for tax time. You will feel a sense of relief knowing you are not only ahead of the tax season, but also completely organized before the first Christmas party invitation.

 

Organizing for Empty Nesters

 

organizing for empty nesters

If the last of your kids has gone off to college, the silence that you so longed for now seems deafening.  But this is just a shift in your household flow. Now, rather than focusing on a high school student’s needs, you can focus on your own. To help make this shift easy, you need to get organized. Start Here to Create Your Keepsake Box and Your To-Do Box: Boxes for Empty Nesters

Create a Keepsake Box

Fill a box with everything that you want to keep from your child’s growth through graduation. Childhood drawings, favorite toys and diplomas can go in this box. Label it and put it away for now. This will help you make the transition away from feelings of sadness. Your child has made the transition to a new life; it’s time you do the same.

Create a To-Do Box

This box is not one you will not put away. In this box you can put objects that represent what you want to do in your new stage of life. Fill it with objects of aspiration. Sure you could make lists in notebooks, but having a physical object in a box takes up space and reminds you everyday of where you want to go, want you want to do.

  • Travel: find objects that will always remind you of the destination you want to visit.
  • Hobbies: starting a hobby that you never had time for can finally happen with objects in your To-Do box that stimulate your inspiration for gardening or writing
  • People you want to visit. We make lots of visits to family and friends throughout our life, but many times they are uninspired. Think of the people you want to spend some quality time with now that you have the time. Fill your To-Do Box with reminders from photo albums or personal mementos that will get you going!

 

 

Whether to Choose Metal vs. Corrugated Filing Systems

metal file cabinets

Deciding how to set up your filing system for your business can depend on numerous factors that need to be considered, not only for the current status of your company , but also how long-term developments in  your file management process may impact your system.

Metal Filing Cabinets For Durability

By far, metal filing cabinets offer the most durability. However, as a records manager, you must be confident that little will change in your business when it comes to the records you keep in them. Because of the unpredictability of business dynamics, metal cabinets may be too rigid for your needs. For example, a sudden increase in business may mean an increase in records, which may require additional metal filing cabinets. The added expense is only the beginning, as you now need to find a space where these cabinets are to be installed. Just as easily, business may swing in the opposite direction, a reduction in filing needs, leaving giant metal cabinets taking up space yet filled only with air.

Flexibility in Corrugated

The advantages of corrugated records storage is the flexible solution they provide for the dynamics of business. Due to the reasonable price of corrugated storage, boxes can  be purchased at a low cost to accommodate new files and with downswings in business, easily recycled like paper when no longer needed.

Also, corrugated file storage is lightweight and most boxes feature handles so when files need to be moved into outside storage facilities, the process becomes much easier, especially when you have to do it yourself.

Bankers Box storage

Corrugated Maximizes Office Space for Small Business

Most small businesses have small offices, so records storage can be an annoyance. Often a business owner will need to fill waiting rooms and personal office space with bulky metal filing cabinets as the need for file storage increases. However, with corrugated storage, less space is required as record storage boxes are individually smaller than full size cabinets and they stack nicely in a vacant corner.

The Durability Issue and Long-Term Storage

If records-keeping in your business stays fairly consistent, then  many records managers may choose metal cabinets for long-term endurance. Many may point out the “crush factor” of corrugated. Even though Bankers Box has designed their boxes with double wall construction for lasting strength, stacked boxes may still over time begin to compress and collapse. However, if corrugated is the preferred choice over metal,  there are options to prevent this from happening based on the type of corrugated records storage box selected.

For example, basic duty boxes should only be used for light stacking. They are best for temporary files or quick access files kept in the office.

Medium duty boxes have greater strength, and are ideal for small storage room stacking.

For long-term storage, however, heavy duty strength is essential for stacking boxes high with full contents in long-term storage facilities, whether on or off premise.

Corrugated Drawer Systems

An additional option, a sort of middle ground between cabinets and boxes, is corrugated drawer systems. They vary in size for different office layouts, offering the central organization that cabinets provide, while also maintaining the flexibility and lightweight movability that makes corrugated storage boxes ideal.

Organizing Classroom Bulletin Boards for the School Year

Teacher in classroom

As a teacher, you probably have awesome bulletin board ideas for your classroom already planned. But the prep work involved can be time-consuming. So it’s important to get started early (preferably before school starts) by preparing bulletin board backdrops ahead of time, you can make the final creative decorating less stressful. Also get a bulletin board storage box to keep all of your bulletin boards clean and protected throughout the year. Storage box folders keep each bulletin board theme separated, along with add-on bulletin board supplies (photos, cut-out letters, etc.) that you will need for final decorating.

Organizing Your Bulletin Board Ideas

Make a list of your bulletin board themes. Of course your list is huge, but narrowing your themes down to boards that will be most helpful and useful to your students can make your boards a big hit. Date each selected theme so you know when it will makes its appearance during the school year. Perhaps start with a welcome back to school board on the first day of class, shift to a holiday board around Halloween or Thanksgiving, etc. The dates will ensure you stay on track when it’s time to swap out themes.

Preparing Your Board Backdrops

Whatever type of bulletin board you use, a backdrop theme color is essential for organizing  your idea by color or material. The backdrops also keep you focused on each theme.

Here are some cool backdrop materials to considers:

Plastic Tablecloths left over from summer picnics make great board  covers. Also the plastic is durable and acts as a clean background for colorful pinups.

Eye-Catching Aluminum Foil– Very cool backdrop for science project boards or Christmas boards.

Versatile Cotton Fabric. A trip to the fabric store before school starts gets the creative juices flowing with colorful options and even patterns that will make a fun and engaging board that is easily covered with staples or glue.

Create a Add-Ons List

Now that you have the board backdrops ready, make the list of add-ons you will hang from each board. If you are not quite sure what add-ons to use, include the essential materials to make the add-ons into the bulletin board storage folder so you will have them when the time comes.

33803

Bulletin Board Storage Box Folders have handy list areas where you can write your add-ons that will go on each bulletin board.

 Show Time!

The day before each board gets seen by the class, simply hang your prepped board, pin up or staple up the add-ons and you are ready in no time.

Check out more bulletin board backdrop ideas at Organized Classroom.

Are You Storing Half-Filled Boxes? How to Conduct a Box Audit

archiving-documents-with-bankers-box

Evaluating your records room needs, you may realize that many boxes taking up space may be half-filled or even empty. As records get moved around throughout the year, inefficiencies in records management can arise that can consume critical space that can be used by new files and Bankers Boxes. 

A simple box audit is a four step process that helps eliminate wasted records storage space.

Step 1: Separate boxes into two groups: those boxes that need to be retained and those that can be destroyed.

Step 2: Capture details at the file level. What files in the retained boxes are still relevant? The labeled box may need to be retained, but perhaps some of the files inside are no longer needed. Often a box is designated as retained, then at the file level, most of the folders inside end up being shredded, leaving you with an empty box.

Step 3: For files that are retained, consolidate and restructure. You may be able to organize a handful of files from a nearly empty box into a box that has some reserve space. This may require relabeling of retained storage boxes.

Step 4: Destroy all unneeded records.

Using this simple organizing method, one company was able to reduce the volume of records in storage from 7000 cubic feet to only 495 cubic feet!

Not sure how long you should keep records, the IRS has some tips: Records-Keeping for Taxes

Guide for Determining How Bankers Boxes You Need.

How Many Files Fit in a standard Banker’s Box?

Here’s the dimensions and capacity for a standard banker/copy box: 12.5′”W x 15.5′”D x 10.5′”H

Depending on the type of paper and the amount of file folders that you have in each box, you can fit approximately 2000 to 2500 sheets of paper.

 

How Many Bankers Boxes Fit in Storage?

To figure out how many boxes of documents you have, think about this:

If your documents aren’t packed tightly and you have 150 sheets per inch, then you need one standard banker’s box for every 13” to 16” of space on your shelves (round it down to a foot to make it easier).

If you can’t fit one more piece of paper on your shelf, you’re probably closer to 200 sheets per inch.  In that case, you’ll need one standard Banker’s Box for every 10” to 12” of space on your shelves.