Most companies today are not completely paperless because they lack crucial components needed in order to do so. The four most important aspects of going completely electronic are: scanners, a document management system, large monitors, and lastly a unanimous decision by the entire staff to do tasks electronically. Since going paperless is a large investment you are probably wondering what the major benefits would be for implementing a solution like this? In this article I will explain how going paperless increases productivity, improves customer service, reduces operational costs, tightens security, and creates an environmentally sound company.
It seems as though every time you’re looking for a specific document it’s always in the last place you look, and to make it worse, at the bottom of the stack. With that said, companies can easily spend multiple hours every week looking for paper files. This results in time, money, and productivity being wasted. With a Document Management System in place this allows your organization to search for and retrieve documents instantly. You simply scan a document turning into an image file, and then convert the document into a searchable text image through the use of OCR Software. Once the document enters the system you can simply search a phrase, number, name, or date, and have access to the information instantly, thus increasing overall employee productivity.
In addition to increasing worker productivity, your organization will also improve its customer service department. How many times throughout the day do you need to tell a customer to wait so you can check on the document and get back to them? Sometimes you don’t end up finding the document right away and this can take a full day or two before you have the information available. Not a good situation for you or your company to be in. Now let’s re-phrase this to “Not a problem, Let me pull up the document now and check it for you.” This results in better service meaning an increase in sales and more satisfied customers who are spreading the word about your business.
Another huge benefit of going paperless is reducing operating costs. Paper files, folders, and cabinets all take up space or office rooms which end up being large expenses. In fact, most organizations state office space is second in costs right behind employee salaries. Scanning documents and importing them into a document management system would eliminate the issue and save companies money. No longer would you have to search for documents in storage rooms or pay for wasted space that paper is taking up. You can now fill the space with more employees and turn an expense into a profit. Alleviating storage space also coincides with increasing productivity and improving client service. No longer will time be spent on searching for documents, therefore the chance of having customers wait or missing calls decreases dramatically.
One of the most important aspects to a business is having the ability to protect important documents. Paper is vulnerable to many outside factors with the main two being physical theft and destruction from water, fire, and other natural disasters that can happen. Important documents can also be subjected to unwanted employees viewing them. When you scan confidential documents you can limit and restrict access to certain employees. This ensures sensitive information is not being seen by all. With document management systems in place your organization can also adhere to compliance regulations easily. When information is needed you have access to it instantly, thus avoiding any penalties against federal or state regulations.
Lastly, going paperless creates an environmentally sound organization. Digitizing documents results in fewer copies, less paper consumption, and it saves money on consumable expenses. Also, all the documents that you can now throw away including new copies can be recycled. Giving back to the environment helps the world and reduces your carbon footprint.
In conclusion, going paperless creates an environmentally sound and productive organization. You can increase employee productivity, save a great deal of money by decreasing wasted space, eliminate unnecessary time searching for documents, ease compliance requirements, and improve client service.
By Shane Hardy
All Star Software Systems, LLC