The workplace is becoming an increasingly digital space – almost all businesses operate with some form of computer system. But yet, a huge number of companies still rely on paper documents. Is this something that your business does? It could be time for you to look into digitising your documents and working with a paper-free system.
It might seem like a huge to the way that your company operates, but it can actually offer a huge range of advantages. Here we will take a look at whether digitisation of your documents is the right thing for your business, along with the range of options available to you.
The benefits of digitising
One of the major benefits of digitising your documents is comes from improvements in workflow and productivity. This is especially true for remote workers, as it allows them to have access to all company documents immediately, rather than having to rely on someone in the physical office to help them. Having the documents easily retrievable means that staff can get on with work without having to search for physical copies.
If your office is also looking at becoming more environmentally friendly, digitising your documents is an important step to going paper-free. Aside from the obvious reduction in wasted paper, it can be motivating to your staff to know that they are working for a company with a conscience.
An additional bonus is that you save a great deal of space that you currently for the storage of your paper documents. You might be surprised at how much of a difference this can make to your office in terms of your ability to fit people in.
Of course, there are challenges that come with digitising, and the first may very well be convincing others in your business to change their working practice. If you are presenting it as an idea to your boss it can sometimes be difficult to justify the time it will take to implement the new system, as this will result in at least some downtime.
Even if you have managed to implement policies to digitise documents, it can be difficult to enforce the paper-free office and old habits can slip back into place. It is important to police this as best possible, to ensure that all documents are digital.
Auditing your documents
You might be surprised how many documents you use regularly across your business, and the number of these that are kept exclusively on paper (or referred to only on paper). It will be necessary to do a full audit of all of the documents your business currently uses so that all can be digitised without disrupting anyone.
It is worth noting that in many cases, businesses will use a mixture of paper and digital documents, so this can also be an excellent time to get a system in place for your current digital files.
Understand your storage options
As you look into document digitisation, there is a fundamental choice you will need to make about where the documents are stored. You can either choose to have the documents saved on a physical server located on your premises or on the cloud.
Both come with advantages and disadvantages, but generally smaller businesses will benefit from the space-saving, cost-saving and simplicity benefits of cloud storage. Larger businesses will benefit from the autonomy and freedom of having your own physical servers. There is no ‘right’ answer to this, and it will depend on your circumstances and the specific requirements of the company.
Work with professionals
It can be a huge task to digitise your documents so it a good idea to work with document scanning specialists to get the process on track. There are businesses that can provide you with all of the necessary expertise and equipment to quickly and efficiently digitise your entire range of paper files. If necessary, the can even do the capturing and scanning of your documentation as well as providing the online hosting.
This can make the whole transition simple and cost-effective, whilst also ensuring that the digitisation process is handled by a team who have significant expertise in this area. If you lack technical knowledge, this is definitely the right solution for you.