If you take a minute to think about how much information is created, stored, managed and disposed of on any given day at a business, you can easily become overwhelmed. Because of that, records management is often viewed as overwhelming simply because information grows at such a fast rate. But it’s a necessary part of doing business and, in fact, the way you manage your records can make or break your business. You have to keep files, not only to be able to reference them in the future, but many laws and regulations say you have to keep them for specific periods of time. As a result, most businesses spend countless hours trying to figure out how to get a handle on their information.
The truth is, it’s really not that hard thanks to document imaging technology. The way document imaging works is that all hard copy files, regardless the original file type, are imaged and converted to electronic images. These images then get housed through a secure, web-based, content management system, or what many call a “virtual file room.” Once the images are uploaded into the secure system, with just a click of a mouse, you can access all your information, even those files that may at one point have been in a back storage room.
Here are five big benefits businesses receive by going digital:
- Reduced costs – For companies who have staff managing information, positions can be reallocated to focus on more revenue generating areas. With document imaging, storage space is saved and hard copies no longer take up space. For companies who are renting space to store files, this could add up to a lot of money on an annual basis. Also, by not having to print a hard copy of every file needing to be retained, you’ll save on ink and paper.
- Automatic protection – When files are maintained through a document management program, you can be sure that everything needing to be retained is available with just a simple click of the mouse. Retention periods are automatically monitored, so once a file has reached the end of its “shelf life,” the information gets deleted from the system. These features of a document management system can protect you in the event of a court case or audit and allow you to automatically comply with state and federal regulations.
- Increased Security – Business identity theft and sensitive information falling into the wrong hands are things all businesses have to work hard to prevent. With information being housed through a document management program, information is protected on a secure, password protected site. You can choose who has access to what. Not only does that help prevent possible internal identity theft problems, you’ll also be protected if there’s a break-in at your business because sensitive information won’t be lying around.
- Convenience – Information is accessible with this type of records management option no matter the time or day or night, and it can be reviewed in a matter of seconds. So, if you need your files in the middle of the night, you can simply log on from your home, rather than having to physically locate the file at your office.
- Something to add to your “green” credentials – Email and the Internet both played a large role in helping to reduce the amount of paper we consume. So too will a document management program. No longer will multiple copies need to be made as a file back-up solution. Plus, it will help keep our already packed landfills free of paper waste. With less paper being consumed, fewer trees will be used, which also plays a role in helping to keep our air cleaner.
But what about the cost? Whether you’re a small business or a large Fortune 500 company, document imaging software is neither costly nor time-consuming. When you’re looking for more information about a program that will best suit your company, seek out a firm that offers a variety of imaging options. Such options may include scanning only select information, converting all company files to electronic format or scanning only the files that are currently in use. These options can meet your goals while still being budget-friendly.
It’s also important to find a company that specializes in programs that are fully compatible with your computer software and file types, while offering secure management options. While finding a solution to best fit your needs may take some time initially, remember how much time, resources and money you’ll save in the long-run by not having to manage hard copy files.
Contact us for more information on Document Imaging and Content Managemnt Software solutions.