Reasons to implement a clean desk policy

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A tidy desk equates to a tidy mind, or is it simply better to just embrace the chaos and get on with it anyway? Different personalities will no doubt argue each side depending on their own preference but there are good reasons to implement a clean desk policy.

A clean desk policy is where employees are directed keep desk spaces clear and tidy at all times. But as well as making the office look good it also makes it easier to place specific emphasis on the management and protection of sensitive information.

A Clean Desk Policy helps improve your working environment and protect your company in many ways, including:

  • Data protection law compliance – With all organisations are legally compelled by the Data Protection Act to protect the personal information of employees, customers, patients, pupils. Leaving sensitive information lying around on desks does not comply with the stipulations of the act, indeed the penalty for which can be a fine of up to £500,000.
  • Data breach risk reduced – Anything that helps to protect sensitive information from unauthorized view has to be good practice. The fines for a security breach that leads to information theft or fraud can extend into millions of pounds in fines. The knock on effect can also mean loss of business through damage to reputation and trust within your chosen industry.
  • Negating insider fraud – If the information your company deals with is particularly sensitive and has a value outside the business, insider fraud can be a tempting situation for some. Taking the opportunity away, prevention rather than cure, is a good sense approach to the potential issue.
  • Saving resources – In conjunction with a clean desk policy, a review of the use of printed matter might also be relevant. Cutting down on the use of paper can provide big savings and help the environment at the same time. Limiting the use of paper documents also makes the management of sensitive data easier.
  • Create a positive environment – Whether improving office aesthetics is something everyone feels is important or not, there’s no doubt that clear and tidy workstations can have a positive impact on employees. Coming in to work and not having to deal with a pile of papers in front of you has to be a positive for state of mind. It also looks more pleasing and organised should you receive visitors too.
  • Better time management – If only because it means that it is easier to find important pieces of information, rather than wading through piles of papers, a clean desk policy can save time. It’s also more professional if you need to refer to a certain piece of information during a phone call if you can immediately go to it and solve the issue.
  • PMA – Your positive mental attitude improves when your working environment is uncluttered and less stressed. Time can be spent on things other than searching for missing data and utilised far more productively.

Implementing a clean desk policy certainly can be of great benefit to businesses for a number of reasons. When deciding to take this route the advantages and reasons should be made clear to employees through written communication. The policy should be clearly documented and installed in conjunction with all affected workers. However, where the protection of data is concerned this policy should also work alongside a review of secure storage facilities to ensure that printed matter that does exist is effectively protected. Security arrangements for settings and passwords related to computers and electronic devices should also be reviewed. Even during a visit to the toilet or trip to get a coffee should computes and paperwork be secure. Systems in place for the disposal of obsolete information should also be reviewed to ensure best practices are observed.

When it comes to the disposal of electronic equipment and data, this where Recycle IT 4 U can help.

RecycleIT4U offer a fast, efficient and friendly service to help recycle your unwanted electrical goods with a simple automated collection system.
To book a collection you can either use our online form or you can speak to us direct during our normal office hours. Our collection booking telephone number is 01952 580814.

We will collect redundant PCs, laptops, monitors, servers, network products, printers, EPOS, Scanners, UPS, cabling, AV equipment, projectors, telephones, mobiles and fax machines using our own vehicles at an agreed date and time.

An official WEEE disposal certificate will be issued, quoting serial number, asset tag and 
description of all the items collected.

Hazardous waste notes will be issued for redundant equipment such as monitors and batteries that contain hazardous materials.

We can also ensure secure data destruction. The security of unwanted data held on file by way of magnetic media, computer hard drives, 
backup tapes, CD’s or floppy drives is controlled by the Data Protection Act 1998. All data bearing devices are dealt with by Recycle IT 4U in one of two ways:-

  • Physical shredding
  • Electronic wiping of DATA (only applicable if approved by you the customer)

Data held on hard drives is removed or eradicated using approved software and hardware in accordance with internationally recognised standards.

We also pride ourselves in refurbishing, reusing and recycling for spares and repairs as much as possible, so equipment can have a second lease of life.

Any equipment not suitable for our refurbishment programme or spares, is separated and then sent in bulk to our Strategic Partner, the world’s largest waste management company for further recycling and separation into glass, metal and plastics and reintroduced into the manufacturing chain as raw materials.