One of the more daunting tasks for a photographer is to simplify their workflow. My photo files use to be a mess with folders scattered all around my computer. I also had SD cards, hard drives, and notes laying around my desk that had no rhyme or reason.
A few years ago I ran across a video that photographer Chase Jarvis posted about his complete workflow for photography & video. I was able to take bits and pieces that worked for me and completely made my life much easier. Losing precious files was also something that happened to me all the time. Now I keep my data and live work separate.
Definitely check it out if you are trying to come up with your own workflow solution.