Any modern office or business, big or small, will use a lot of documents during work. These range from financial reports and personnel files to future plans, client information, reports, HR files, and much more. Today, these documents may be either in paper or digital form, and for any good business, a sound document management system will be in place, such as an electronic document management system. Modern electronic document management can be done with Cloud data storage and data servers, the typical means of storing large amounts of data. This is not always done alone, however, and electronic document management can be outsourced. Print management services or document scanning contractors may be hired, and this can save a lot of clutter in the office and make file sharing easier. Proper electronic document management can bolster a company’s performance and prevent expenses associated with misfiling paper documents. When is it time to reach out to those scanning and electronic document management services out there?
This is not to say that paper documents are a hopeless liability. Paper still has a role to play in today’s communication and business work, and print media often has a soothing effect on customers who receive paper mail. However, an office may eventually build up too much paper, and if something is not done about the excess paper documents, there may be problems. For example, an excess of paper documents means that many documents end up being misfiled or lost entirely, and this can cost the company money. It costs as much as $125 to retrieve or re-create a lost document, since time and effort is spent recovering that document instead of working elsewhere. In fact, valuable time is spent filing and retrieving documents even if nothing is misfiled, and this can be costly if there is too much paper in the workplace. It may sound like a negligible inconvenience at first, but the constant act of getting up to retrieve and find a paper document, use it, then return it can add up fast. And this is assuming that nothing has been misfiled or lost.
Excessive volumes of paper at the office also presents a fire hazard, as stray sparks or an exposed electrical wire may touch these papers and start a large fire. On top of that, all of these papers need physical storage room, and all of those boxes, filing cabinets, and folders are taking up a lot of room that could be used for something else instead. Worse yet, some papers in the office might not belong there anyway, as many printed documents are wasted. An employee might print off the incorrect document, or accidentally print off too many copies of it. Or, a printer may glitch and the document may print poorly, requiring that it be printed again. This is when electronic document management services may be called upon, along with document scanner crews.
Paper to Digital
A client company may outsource the labor of scanning paper documents and uploading their digital versions. Such a service may visit a client and get to work, efficiently scanning thousands of documents in a timely manner. These documents are then stored digitally. This is not to be confused with an IT service, as a separate IT crew will implement data server functions for these document and set up cyber-security for them. The document scanners are responsible for converting the documents to digital form en masse, and afterwards, the client company may shred all of the documents and set them out for recycling.
Why might this be done? For one, such labor removes many of the downsides of excess paper. With all of that paper gone, the office has a lot more free room for other work, and the fire hazard of paper is gone. This also prevents wasted time and money spent on retrieving or reproducing lost or misfiled paper documents. Better yet, digital documents can be sent and received nearly anywhere, and much faster than by paper mail. More and more office workers are working remotely, such as on board jet flights or even at home, and they can’t afford to be cut off from their co-workers. Instead, digital documents may be shared with e-mail and Cloud data storage services online for flexibility and convenience.