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Rules for Leveraging File Sharing

By Hanna Welch | August 1, 2019 |

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Not everyone is a professional when it comes to file sharing. Once the kinks have been ironed out, you can fully leverage file sharing for increased productivity and efficiency.

File sharing has proven to be one of the best ways to increase productivity. Unfortunately, working on the same or similar files with your colleagues may still take more time than necessary. The point is, not everyone is a professional when it comes to file sharing. This read will walk you through the process of file sharing. Once the kinks have been ironed out, you can fully leverage file sharing for increased productivity and efficiency.

One thing to remember is that the presence of hackers and other hostile external factors has increased the need for secure ways of data transmission. With the increase in security issues and the dynamics of freelance sourcing, the need for proper file sharing has never been greater. In many cases, it might be necessary to protect the data using many layers of security and even by reconsidering the decision to share.

What Are the Rules for Leveraging File Sharing?

Before you learn how to leverage file sharing in a remote work environment, you need to understand the purpose of file sharing. Some files might be extremely important and, when in the wrong hands, capable of sabotaging the company or bringing in malicious threats. If there is no option but to share files, first ask yourself the following questions:

  • What is the position of the individual you share files with, and how can they influence the shared content?
  • How long will the individual be part of your company?
  • Is there a valid reason for them to see the files or folders you want to share?
  • What information or part of the project do you need to track?
  • Does the individual have qualifying security clearance to view the file?

What is the position of the individual you share files with, and how can they influence the shared content?

One’s position in the organization bears significance on the file-sharing privileges. If the person will be working on a particular field – for example, photography – then access to the company’s file sharing storage service can be granted but at the admin’s discretion.

By answering the question of how the shared file can be affected, you will be able to ascertain whether or not it would be necessary to let individuals have access to the file in question.

How long will the individual be part of your company?

There are some particular company projects or sections that are specifically created for one project. If this is a short-term remote project, then the access should be granted only to those related to the project. Anything other than that is an unnecessary move that will only present problems in the long run and fears about security after the individual has completed their project and is no longer in contact with the company.

Is there a valid reason for them to see the files or folders you want to share?

Why you share a specific file is the most important consideration. When sharing something, consider who will need access to review, edit, comment, and approve the contents of that particular file. Clear answers to these questions will save you in the long run. They will help you give the right authority to the deserving/responsible individual.

Just like giving too much authority to the wrong personnel might affect efficiency, so might restricting the right person from full access at the right time – it halts production and increases the time needed to complete the project. For example, if an editor is given the ‘View Only’ type of access, then they cannot review, add comments or edit the file.

What information or part of the project do you need to track?

File sharing enables everyone who has access to a particular file to edit or work on the file according to the sharer’s settings or limitations. Ensure that you have access to the complete version history so you can keep seeing the changes and how the issues have been resolved. 

The ‘admin’ sets the limitations of what can be done on the document. If you feel like reserving some rights, choose the ‘View Only’ format so that others aren’t able to edit the document or make any changes to it. You can keep track of what happens by receiving notifications each time individuals open the file or add something. Being the administrator gives you control and power over what you would like to happen to your document.

Does the individual have qualifying security clearance to view the file?

In an organization, some personnel have more privileges than others. If a freelance talent is only cleared to work, say, at an ‘entry level,’ then only give them access to tasks on that level. Be careful not to share files with everyone as the content might be misused or wasted on unqualified personnel.

Security concerns are also a factor when considering the parameters for file sharing. Pair your file-sharing accessibility with the organization’s security framework. This way, there is no information left vulnerable or within a subfolder or stray file.

Your Organization’s Sharing Mantra

Each organization is responsible for its file-sharing system. When done right, file sharing enhances convenience, collaboration and productivity while efficiently delivering the best practices and results. In a nutshell, these rules are mostly what to consider when leveraging file sharing. Remember, once you have shared files with a certain individual, they can use them at their discretion without your knowledge. Be sure the file-sharing settings are correct and check what is best for the company before sharing. 

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