Guest post by Courtney Levin, a sales executive at Lewan Technology who focuses on helping businesses implement new solutions to improve document management and drive paperless initiatives.
When talking to companies about EDM (Electronic Document Management, also referred to as ECM or Enterprise Content Management) the most common response I hear is “What we’re doing now is working for us, why change our paper filing system?”.
While this is may seem true, once we start talking further about how they record, manage, store and access their paper documents, three common pain points almost always surface. And with an EDM solution implemented, most of these companies see measurable improvements in employee efficiency and business management.
Enterprise content management (ECM) is used to create, store, distribute, discover, archive and manage unstructured content (such as scanned documents, email, reports, medical images and office documents), and ultimately analyze usage to enable organizations to deliver relevant content to users where and when they need it. —Gartner
1. Archival Requirements
Problem: Companies are required to keep certain documents for a specified period of time (usually up to 7-10 years). These documents are often kept in boxes in a file room, storage closet or warehouse area, taking up valuable space that could be used for revenue-generating activities like employee offices or product inventory.
Solution: Scanning and storing documents as electronic records allows companies to get rid of hard copies and filing boxes while still complying with their retention policies. When scanned, documents can be made searchable and organized in a standardized structure to make finding them quick and easy.
Trim up to 90% of your operating and storage costs by eliminating paper files and manual processes.
2. Lost Documents = Lost Time
Problem: Hard copy documents are often lost, misfiled or misplaced, which means an employee or employees are taking time away from more important job duties to search for the record. Time is money after all.
Solution: When documents are scanned and stored electronically, searchable metadata can be attached to each document with important lookup criteria like date of sale, customer name, account number, etc.
EDM search features that make content easy to find can cut up to 80% of the time it takes to retrieve information.
A document file structure can also be created, so scanned documents are “filed” in a certain hierarchy that meets your businesses needs or previous hard copy organizational structure.
3. Data Security and Information Privacy
Problem: Sensitive documents are not being closely monitored when in a file room or in boxes. Who has access to your file room and what files are they allowed to look at? How do you know if they view confidential information while in there? It’s almost impossible to track with traditional hard copy file storage.
Solution: With an EDM solution, companies can set login permissions on folders and individual documents, limiting who can perform functions like viewing, editing or downloading.
Employees accessing the system can also be tracked with an audit trail, so you have visibility into their actions whenever they are in the system. The system will also track changes made to a document so there is historical data of updates, drafts, edits and the originals.
Do these issues sound familiar?
Document retention and access is integral to any business and these pain points can all be eliminated by implementing an EDM solution.
Here are a few other great resources to read if you’re considering moving from paper-based to electronic document management:
Not sure if this is the right option for your business? for a complimentary assessment and recommended next steps to move quickly or migrate slowing into digital document management or other document workflow solutions that can help improve efficiency, security and business processes.