File Naming Conventions References

For some examples of file naming policies used in various industries and institutions please refer the list below and also request to download the exadox WIZ file naming policy planner. This software wizard comes with ready-built file naming conventions that can be easily personalized to suit your specific operational requirements.

How to plan your own folder and file naming conventions?

The most strategic components in an electronic document filing policy are the folder and file naming conventions established for the specific operational entity (e.g. workgroup, department, business unit, etc..). To build your unique document filing policy you can take advantage of a variety of filing policy and naming conventions templates available within eXadox WIZ filing policy planning wizard. Request a free 10-day trial version of eXadox WIZ. For information on why and how to build filing policy plans using eXadox WIZ request a free copy of the White Paper: Document Management Policy Planning for a Paperless or “Less-paper” Office.

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The purpose of file naming conventions

Effective file naming is the cornerstone for building a successful paperless office. It is also essential for effective collaboration between individuals working on common business activities. The names you assign to your electronic documents constitute the foundation for the proper management of your documents. A document that is given a well structured name based on a file naming convention is easy to search for, identify and retrieve. However, the key to successfully executing this strategy is that everyone must adhere to the file naming policy set in place. This insures consistency, precision and reliability and contributes to efficiency and increased productivity especially in collaborative work environments where file sharing takes place.

Templates for semi-automated file naming

We are providing this list as a reference only and do not endorse any specific file naming standard described because this can be unique to each organization or department. Our eXadox policy planning wizard (eXadox WIZ) and our eXadox semi-automated file naming software (eXadox DT and eXadox MSO) come with templates that are similar to the conventions that are documented. These templates can be modified or new ones may be created by the user to satisfy specific requirements.

Possible naming conventions

The following is a compilation of reference articles and specifications that describe the file naming recommended or used in various industries, institutions and government offices. They all have their own merit but may not be the most suitable for your unique working environment. You may use anyone or combination of them to establish your own filing policy. To help you plan your file naming structure, please request a free trial of the eXadox WIZ. This policy planning wizard contains multiple file naming convention samples that you could use to mix and match to create your personalized file naming convention.

Reference List

Used For

General

General

Media Studies

Insurance

General

General / Images

Email Attachments

General / Images

Documents / Folders

Documents / Folders

General

Records Management

Project Files

Business Documents

Documents / Folders

General

Office Documents

Medical Transaction File

Archives

Scanned Images

Semi-Automated Naming

General

Title

Document Naming and Storage Policy Planning using a Wizard

User forGeneral
Organization nameMultiCIM Technologies Inc.
ArticleClick to read
AuthorVincent Santaguida
A filing policy planning software wizard could help streamline the process immensely. The wizard’s policy planning templates could be used as foundations for building custom policy profiles to help fulfill specific department or workgroup needs. Multiple versions of policy profiles can be built that could be further merged and refined to facilitate consensus and strategic approval. The resulting report file that the wizard generates could be disseminated and become the official filing policy reference document that may be shared by all stakeholders. This policy report would be used for guidance to ensure that the proper storage and naming of documents is consistently employed to ultimately facilitate efficient and precise search, identification, and retrieval of all pertinent electronic documents

...
File-Folder Naming Conventions - 10 Rules

User forGeneral
Organization nameMultiCIM Technologies Inc.
ArticleClick to read
AuthorVincent Santaguida
1: Avoid extra long folder names and complex hierarchical structures but use information-rich filenames instead.

2: Put sufficient elements in the structure for easy retrieval and identification but do not overdo it.

3: Use the underscore (_) as element delimiter. Do not use spaces or other characters such as: ! # $ % @ ^ ` ~ + ; =

...
File Naming and Organization

User forMedia Studies
Organization nameUniversity of Western Ontario
ArticleClick to read
AuthorTim Craven
File names should be concise for a variety of reasons:
- shorter names are easier to type
- links to files with short names take up less space in HTML code, making the pages somewhat shorter and so somewhat faster to download
- shorter names tend to be easier to remember
- shorter names will not appear truncated in directory displays such as that in Windows Explorer, avoiding the need to adjust column widths or examine file properties more closely
- shorter names are easier to read and easier to distinguish from other, similar names
- longer file and directory names can combine to form excessively long path names which software cannot handle
Decoding the Financial Statement PDF FileNaming Conventions

User forInsurance
Organization nameNational Association of Insurance Comissioners (NAIC)
ArticleClick to read
AuthorNAIC
The file naming convention and terminology are designed by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).

1) The file name can very in length but will have a suffix extension of ".PDF".
2) The file name to the left of the ".PDF" extension consists of the following fields, which are delimited by an underscore ("_") character. The letters are not case-sensitive.
3) The general form of the file name is ccccc_vc_s_yyyy_f_d_vv_sa_ss_fb_p.PDF
Document Management Policy Planning Whitepaper

User forGeneral
Organization nameMultiCIM Technologies Inc.
ArticleClick to read
AuthorVincent Santaguida
The purpose of this white paper is to sensitize productivity-driven leaders about the importance of instituting document management policies as an operational necessity; and provide some basic direction in the planning and documenting of filing policies. Although the policy planning and documenting process will be discussed on a general level, the main purpose is to illustrate how the eXadox™ WIZ document management planning tool can be used to simplify these tasks.
Recommendations for Limitations on Image Filenaming

User forGeneral / Images
Organization nameControlled Vocabulary
ArticleClick to read
AuthorDavid Riecks
To reinterate from the filenaming page, the most important thing that a filename can do for your image collection is to provide a form of unique identification ( or [UID] ) for each digital "asset." However if you wish to be able to exchange your image files with clients or colleagues (often using different computer operating systems, then you need to observe some standards for cross-platform compatibility to ensure maximum portability. Here are some recommendations to avoid potential problems. File and Directory Naming Recommendations 1. When creating file and folder (directory) names limit your filenames to the characters A-Z, a-z, 0-9, underscore ( _ ), period ( . ), and hyphen ( - ).
Managing Emailed Documents Using Structured File Naming

User forEmail Attachments
Organization nameMultiCIM Technologies Inc.
ArticleClick to read
AuthorVince Santaguida
Electronic document exchange through email attachments is providing business a forward thrust towards the adoption of paperless office practices. A significant downside is that this benefit comes with the burden of having to manage numerous emails and more importantly, to properly file the attached documents. Most organizations have instituted best-practices for managing paper documents; however, a free-for-all approach still prevails for emailed documents. Electronic documents demand a well-structured filing process just as their paper counterpart. This is especially critical in collaborative work settings where documents are shared resources. This article presents how a structured file naming and storage strategy can be exploited to efficiently file email attachments. Users may employ this strategy as a manual process or they may take advantage of eXadox for viewing attachments and semi-automating the filing process.
Filenames as a Strategy to Managing Your Image Assets

User forGeneral / Images
Organization nameControlled Vocabulary
ArticleClick to read
AuthorDavid Riecks
Filenames as a Strategy to Managing Your Image Assets The most important thing that a filename can do for your image collection is to provide a form of unique identification ( or [UID] ) for each digital "asset." Having a system that ensure that each filename is unique is most important. Of primary importance is the fact that you can not store two files with the exact same name in the same location (folder/directory) of a hard drive, CD-ROM, or other storage media--without possibly overwriting the other file! Think of the danger that exists if you pull a number of digital image files from various locations to provide to a client, and one file accidentally over-writes another because they are now in the same location. This could also be most confusing, if a client orders an image file by number and you deliver, not the file he is not expecting, but another with the same filename!
Naming Conventions for Electronic Files and Folders

User forDocuments / Folders
Organization nameUniversity of York
ArticleClick to read
AuthorYork University
Naming Conventions For Electronic Files and Folders
File and folder naming conventions are key to maintaining well-organized electronic directory and drive structures. This tip sheet provides examples of naming conventions; each unit may determine its own file naming procedure as long as it is applied consistently. Benefits of consistent file and folder naming are:
•Files are easily distinguished one from another
•File names are easier to browse
•Retrieval is facilitated for all users (not just the file’s creator
Semi-Automated Structured FileNaming and Storage White Paper

User forDocuments / Folders
Organization nameMultiCIM Technologies Inc.
ArticleClick to read
AuthorVince Santaguida
As we increasingly adopt paperless-office practices, it becomes readily apparent that the quantity and types of documents that need to be accessed and managed daily are ever increasing. In addition to Microsoft Office documents, we need to cope with the cornucopia of e-mails, scanned images, graphics, photographs, drawings, PDFs etc… The task can be especially challenging when working with shared files that originate from various sources that were created by “someone”, named “somehow” and stored “somewhere”.
File-Folder Naming Conventions - How to Organize

User forGeneral
Organization nameMultiCIM Technologies Inc.
ArticleClick to read
AuthorVincent Santaguida
1: Use short and simple folder names and folder structures and focus on using information-rich filenames.

2: Put just the right amount of elements in the structure for easy retrieval and identification.

3: Use the underscore (_) as element delimiter. Do not use spaces or other characters such as: ! # $ % @ ^ ` ~ + ; =

...
Naming Conventions for Electronic Documents

User forRecords Management
Organization nameGovernment of Alberta
ArticleClick to read
AuthorGovernment of Alberta 2005
Implementing good document names can support the following objectives:

• Facilitate better access to and retrieval of electronic documents.
• Allow sorting of documents in logical sequence (e.g. version #, date).
• Help users to identify the items they are looking for easily and support the ability to recognize the content of a document from a list.
• Help keep track of versions of documents.
Document Naming Convention

User forProject Files
Organization nameOnProjects
ArticleClick to read
AuthorDuardo
Day-to-day project staff are constantly sharing documents via email and portable storage devices as a result it can be easy to loose track of which version is which.Putting the key document information in the title has several benefits,
(1) it will assist your project team members to quickly identify the project, department/function, document title and version/revision number without having to open the document and scan for updates and
(2) this information will assist in the development, management, security, storage/retrieval and the eventual deliberate destruction of the document.
Simple and Affordable Paperless Office Initiative

User forBusiness Documents
Organization nameMultiCIM Technologies Inc.
ArticleClick to read
AuthorVince Santaguida
A low cost effective alternative Document indexing can be accomplished in several ways. Most conventional document management systems commonly require manual entry of metadata or keywords for each document. An innovative and simpler approach is to use structured file naming as a basis of document indexing. The concept involves structuring the filename into descriptive segments that provide all the information necessary to search, retrieve and identify the targeted document. For more info visit www.exadox.com or refer to: eXadox White Paper: Semi-Automated Structured File Naming and Storage.
Standard Naming Conventions For Electronic Records: The Rules

User forDocuments / Folders
Organization nameUniversity of Edinburgh
ArticleClick to read
AuthorAnne Thompson
Standard Naming Conventions For Electronic Records: The Rules
The conventions comprise the following 13 rules. Follow the links for examples and explanations of the rules.
1. Keep file names short, but meaningful.
2. Avoid unnecessary repetition and redundancy in file names and file paths.
3. Use capital letters to delimit words, not spaces or underscores.
4. When including a number in a file name always give it as a two-digit number, i.e. 01-99, unless it is a year or another number with more than two digits.
5. If using a date in the file name always state the date ‘back to front’, and use four digit years, two digit months and two digit days: YYYYMMDD or YYYYMM or YYYY or YYYY-YYYY.
6. When including a personal name in a file name give the family name first followed by the initials.
7. Avoid using common words such as ‘draft’ or ‘letter’ at the start of file names, unless doing so will make it easier to retrieve the record.
8. Order the elements in a file name in the most appropriate way to retrieve the record.
9. The file names of records relating to recurring events should include the date and a description of the event, except where the inclusion of any of either of these elements would be incompatible with rule 2.
10. The file names of correspondence should include the name of the correspondent, an indication of the subject, the date of the correspondence and whether it is incoming or outgoing correspondence, except where the inclusion of any of these elements would be incompatible with rule 2.
11. The file name of an email attachment should include the name of the correspondent, an indication of the subject, the date of the correspondence, ‘attch’, and an indication of the number of attachments sent with the covering email, except where the inclusion of any of these elements would be incompatible with rule 2.
12. The version number of a record should be indicated in its file name by the inclusion of ‘V’ followed by the version number and, where applicable, ‘Draft’.
13. Avoid using non-alphanumeric characters in file names.
File Naming Conventions

User forGeneral
Organization nameUniversity of Wales
ArticleClick to read
Author
File Naming Conventions

1: Making file names short and clear
2: Avoiding repetition and redundancy in file names
3: How to delimit words
4: How to use numbers in file names
5: How to use dates
6: Using personal names in file names
7: Words to avoid using at the start of file names
8: How to order the elements of a file name
9: Recurring events - Including dates and descriptions
10: How to name correspondence records
11: Applying version numbers and draft status
Managing Documents via Structured File Naming

User forOffice Documents
Organization nameMultiCIM Technologies Inc.
ArticleClick to read
AuthorVince Santaguida
Migrating towards paperless-office practices invokes the need to cope with larger amounts and varieties of electronic documents. Acquiring a document management system could help but there are significant costs and complexities that may be too difficult to justify. A more expedient approach is to adopt a structured file naming policy to help manage your documents affordably and effectively. Structured file naming is a powerful yet under-exploited tool for indexing documents. It is a very efficient means of searching and retrieving documents. This article briefly explains how to apply this concept.
Recommendations for Filenaming Conventions

User forMedical Transaction File
Organization nameMN HIPAA Collaborative
ArticleClick to read
Author
File names are commonly generated by the computer application that creates the file. Sometimes the name is mutually agreed to by Trading Partners, or defined by the receiving Trading Partner. If you have the capability of controlling the name assigned to any specific transaction, and there is no required file name with your Trading Partner, then we recommend you consider the following file naming convention.
Naming Conventions for Digital Resources

User for Archives
Organization nameLibrary of Congress
ArticleClick to read
AuthorRebecca Guenther
Naming Conventions for Digital Resources Library of Congress

This paper contains a general summary of developments concerning naming conventions for digital resources. It was originally written as a result of a request by the National Digital Library Federation Planning Task Force for a summary of initiatives related to naming conventions both at the Library of Congress and elsewhere. ......Naming documents are a crucial aspect of design, because it involves the syntax of a name by which a document is referenced. A name is a logical way of referring to an object in some abstract name space.
This document presents the rules for identifying data representing materials from LC's collections that are part of the LC digital archive. The emphasis is on unique identification rather than meaningful or expressive names. A fundamental assumption for those building this archive is that information concerning the archive's content will be made available through descriptions, finding aids, or other similar techniques. These descriptions will include directive devices [logical pointers?] to the digital texts, images, and sound materials they describe.
Structured File Naming Strategy for Managing Scanned Images

User forScanned Images
Organization nameMultiCIM Technologies Inc.
ArticleClick to read
AuthorVince Santaguida
A structured file name consists of multiple segments where each segment provides specific information about the document. The quantity and type of segments employed is dependant on the type of documents and the business activity.
Semi Automated Structured File Naming and Storage

User forSemi-Automated Naming
Organization nameMultiCIM Technologies Inc.
ArticleClick to read
AuthorVince Santaguida
A structured file name consists of multiple segments where each segment provides specific information about the document. The quantity and type of segments employed is dependant on the type of documents and the business activity.
Proper Naming Conventions

User forGeneral
Organization nameUniversity of Michigan-Flint
ArticleClick to read
Author
The primary concern for any web developer should be accessibility. Is your site designed to be easily accessible to the wide variety of browsers that are currently available? One of the ways you can ensure that your site is user-friendly, is to ensure that all files follow naming rules.