BAR codes will be installed on all government files by May next year in a drive to improve efficiency.
Robert Footman, head of the Efficiency Unit, said when the exercise had been completed, departments would be able to establish the number of files, track their whereabouts and monitor their growth and activeness 'at the push of a button'.
Assistant director Kitty Choi Kit-yu said, according to a survey done last year, the Government had about 12 million files, growing at a yearly rate of 12.5 per cent.
The figure excluded Regional Council, Urban Council and Housing Authority files. Principal Management Services Officer Horace Yuen Hoi-sing said files were stored in 1,219 registries. The bar code computer system had been installed in 330 of them.
Legislative Councillor Emily Lai Wai-hing has attacked the Government's document management system as out of the 'Stone Age'.
Mr Footman said civil servants' resistance to the scheme had been 'much less than expected'.
All 47 government departments now had received 'performance pledges'.
'I'm pleasantly surprised how many people have taken on board the concept.'