While some people find comfort in having documents stored in physical form, or stick with paper because "that's how it's always been done", the world has rapidly 'going digital'.
Digital solutions are making every day tasks easier and digital document storage provides a number of benefits for businesses.
Organisations that don't keep up with digital trends, or lack the drive to embrace digital transformation can be very easily left behind enabling the competition to move ahead.
When the Covid pandemic hit forcing office employees to work from home, it became apparent that paper processes and physical document storage could not work.
Hastily thrown together solutions either weren't sustainable for the long term or just didn't meet the requirements of the business. For many, digital document storage solutions that provided authorised access from anywhere were the way forward.
Digital document storage is a system or platform that provides the centralised storage of digital documents. These documents either originate on paper and are converted to a digital file via a document scanner, or are received electronically via email or a file share.
The requirements for digital document storage vary from business to business. Paper documents could be taking up space and the associated costs of having hard copies are becoming too high. Or the lack of structure and organisation are causing problems such as data loss and security issues.
There are a variety of benefits around moving to digital document storage from the obvious, such as freeing up office space, through to improvements companies can overlook, like better customer service. What's the most important will differ from business to business, but here we have complied the top 10 benefits we regularly see of moving to digital document storage.
An AIIM survey found it can take an average of 37 minutes to find one paper file. Every minute spent looking for documents costs the organisation money in wasted resource.
Digital document storage and document scanning streamlines file access across the organisation. Files can be retrieved quickly and easily.
Not only that, scanning offers higher accuracy and speed in comparison to manual processes with fewer errors. Scanning is a highly scalable process accommodating higher volumes of data whilst driving down the costs of manual labour.
Using part of your premises to house paper-based business information costs money and creates a poor working environment.
Digital document storage frees up office space so it can be used to generate more revenue for your company or even a dedicated break out space for employees.
If your organisation has important historical documents they’ll need to be preserved for years to come and unfortunately, the aging process accelerates every time they’re handled.
We have University archives using our scanning solutions to scan artefacts, drawings, books and photos so that students can have instant access to the pieces without damaging them.
Digital document storage is the “last touch” solution.
Digital document storage makes it easy to share documents and collaborate on projects without needing to reproduce information on paper or be confused by different versions.
Staff in multiple locations can access and view electronic documents simultaneously. Scanning software can push scans to document management software or network folders to kick start document workflow processes.
Document quality and compliance controls are a reality for most businesses.
Firstly, document scanning coupled with digital storage makes it easier for your company to fulfill its legal and regulatory obligations. Document security, data protection and document retention rules can all be easily managed.
Secondly, digital files can be organised, indexed and produced quickly to meet the demands of even the strictest auditor. Auditors can even be given limited access to a document management system to find the information they need for themselves.
Instead of having to print and post documents, digital access allows employees to get important information to customers instantly. When customers call in, quicker access to digital documents via search tools means the query can be handled there and then.
Our clients have told us how they used to request data from offsite physical archives to get key information. The time and expense wasted, alongside the poor customer service has now been removed.
Paper documents are especially vulnerable to fires, floods and natural disasters.
Fortunately, document scanning and digital document storage offers enhanced disaster recovery for your business.
Digital files are stored in a dedicated document management system, on your company server or in the cloud. User permissions restrict employees from deleting files and with some advanced applications, restrict viewing rights too.
Digital document storage greatly reduces your organisation’s paper consumption, printing costs and unnecessary travel to off-site storage which all helps work towards a greener planet.
You can read more about paper waste and ways to reduce it in our blog - Office Paper Waste - The Shocking Facts.
Protecting paper-based information is very difficult, especially when it can be left on employee desks or in unlocked filing cabinets.
Digital documents can be encrypted, password protected, and securely stored in a cloud document management system.
Staff access levels can be assigned to specific users and file activity can be tracked.
Last but not least, digital document storage and all associated processes improvements creates happier staff.
Good staff want to be productive and having old fashioned, time consuming processes does not help to retain enthusiastic workers.
Providing instant access from anywhere to the latest company data enables employees to get on with their jobs. The right solution in place means staff can continue to work as they would in the office, whether they're at home or out on the road.
If you still work with a lot of paper we have a solution.
DocTech have provided scanners for over 30 years. We partner with Kodak Alaris as we believe they provide the best hardware on the market along with the best customer service for our clients.
DocTech are an Elite partner of Kodak Alaris as we provide a high number of scanning solutions each year.
If your organisation is bogged down with paper-based processes and you’d like to learn more about the benefits of digital document storage and digital transformation, our team would be happy to give you some advice.
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Processing documents will vary greatly from one organisation to another. How efficiently this happens will be the deciding factor between wasting time and money or staying ahead of the competition.