I agree with Scott. Although he's got it backwards, it is now called Workgroup PDM. And there are other possibilities, like dbWorks and Activault, and others I don't know about.
We installed a PDM system when we hired our second ME, because keeping track of the files was such a pain. If I were working alone, I would still use PDM system.
Devon Sowell, one of the really knowledgeable people in this area, has a book on SolidWorks PDM, as well as another on using SW Explorer for file management. If, like many, you can't convince management to spend the relatively small amount of money to set up a PDM system, then understanding SW Explorer is probably your best hope. Here is his website:
You might get some better answers if you ask in the Data Management/Workgroup PDM forum.
I agree with Scott and Jerry. One addition to Jerry's comments about the "realtively small amount" to set up. If you have SWorks Pro or Premium version, you already have Workgroup PDM included at no charge - there would be no purchase costs, just set up and learning costs, which are not particularly difficult.