Project Management Training Manual 4.1 - Document Management

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Electronic Filing

This section outlines the proper procedures for filing documents electronically. The program manager should (1) make every effort possible to retain all documentation used during the project in an electronic format; and, (2) file these documents in an organized manner in order to easily access the information at any time. Back-ups should be performed regularly and stored in multiple locations.

Folder Structure

The following list provides the names of standard folders used to file documents received and/or generated during the course of the project. A sample file name is also included following the folder.

Common Folders
  • Bid Results
  • Change Orders

          1. RFI's

               RFI #XX_"description"_date.pdf

           2. ASI's

                ASI #XX_"description"_date.pdf

           3. PR's (or PC's, IB's, etc.)

               PR #XX_"description"_date.pdf

           4. COR's (or PCO, etc.)

                COR #XX_date.pdf

           5. CO's

                CO #XX_date.pdf

           6. Change Order Log

                 CO Log_"project name"_date.xls

  • Contracts

           Architect - firm name



            Contractor - firm name


            Project Manager

            Purchase Orders

            Others (programmer, engineers, testing agency, etc.)

  • Correspondence

            Architect - firm name

            Contractor - firm name


            Project Manager

            Purchase Orders


            Others (programmer, engineers, testing agency, etc.)

  • Cost Model

            Cost Model-revX_Project Name_date.pdf

  • Directory
  • Estimates

           Estimate-"STAGE"_Project Name_date (AUTHOR).xls

            1. Conceptual

            2. Schematic

            3. Design Development

            4. Final

            5. Miscellaneous

  • Invoices

           Invoice Summary_Project Name_date.pdf

            Architect - firm name

            Contractor - firm name


            Project Manager

            Purchase Orders

            Others (programmer, engineers, testing agency, etc.)

  • Minutes


            Project Manager


  • Miscellaneous
  • Notes
  • Program
  • Proposals
  • Punch List
  • Reports




           Project Manager's

             Budget Actual Reports

             Monthly Reports

           Soils Report

  • Survey
  • Schedule
  • Architect
  • Contractor's
  • Project Manager's

           Phase Schedules

            Master Schedules

  • Testing





  • Value Engineering
Less Common Folders
  • Action Items
  • Architect Selection
  • Advertise for Bidding_Selection
  • Bid Packages
  • Cash Flow Projections
  • Equipment
  • Fee Bid Document
  • Financing
  • Furnishings
  • Insurance
  • Land
  • Legal
  • Marketing
  • Newspaper
  • Prequalification

Use of these folders will depend on the project; therefore, the folders should be added as needed or hidden until used.

File Names


The name of the document should always begin with the document type. Descriptions for the document type can be added using a hyphen without spaces. The project name and file date are also included in the file name. These items are separated by an underscore.


File names should be descriptive and easily understood. The date the file is received should always be included in the name. If the file date is most important than it should be placed at the beginning; otherwise, it should be towards the end of the file name. The following date formats can be used, depending on the rest of the file name.

  1. M-D-YY
  2. MM-DD-YY
Draft Documents

If the document is in draft form, the following should be added to the end of the file name "(draft-X)", with the "X" indicating the revision number for the draft. An original draft, "-X" would not be included.


The revision number should always be included and follow the document type, separated by a hyphen.


Cost Model-revX_Project Name_M-D-YY.pdf

Contract-Owner-Architect_Project Name_M-D-YY (draft-3).pdf

Electronic Mail

The program manager should save every email related to the project. The emails can be filed in one email folder.

Filing Hard Copies

Hard copies should only be retained for practical purposes and will vary between program managers.

Document Retention Policy

Excluding regulations governing certain industries, there is no universal law of document retention other than the duty to preserve evidence the company knows, or reasonably should know, is relevant to a lawsuit. Adopting a proactive stance toward electronic discovery also conveys a spirit of transparency that can help a company in the court of public opinion; therefore, the following Document Retention Policy will be enforced and audited on a regular basis.

[The policy needs to guide employees regarding which company records should be retained, for how long, and by what method.]

While courts inconsistently define the proper length of time a company should routinely preserve documents - outside of industry regulations and any litigation hold requirement - a company need only keep electronic information as long as necessary for business purposes. Federal Rules contain a "safe harbor" for companies that fail to provide electronically stored information lost as a result of the routine, good faith operation of an electronic information system.

Project Specific Documents

At the completion of the project, the project folder structure should be downloaded to multiple CD's and stored off-site.

Litigation Hold

[Need to continue on from here...]

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