Document Management: myths vs facts

Document Management: myths vs facts

You might remember being told that your tongue has different sections for each taste, or that we use only 10 percent of our brains. These are just some of the few fascinating stories that we hear from our colleagues around the office or the movies that we watch. But that's all they are - stories. Nowadays, there are plenty of myths being spread around and proven false, which is probably why the show MythBusters is still going strong after 12 seasons. While believing some of these myths may be harmless, there are some myths that can actually hold your business back, if not addressed properly.

Some of these dangerous misconceptions involve document management solutions. While document management solutions have been shown to improve general efficiencies and productivity in the office, some trepidation still exists. Below, we bust some of the myths around document management and give you the facts.

Myth #1: Scanning to a shared drive is document management

One of the biggest problems with simply using a shared drive to manage documents is that they have very limited indexing capabilities. Indexing in a shared drive is almost the same as filing documents in those old metal filing cabinets as there is limited ability to tag and cross reference documents saved in the drive. Network drives also lack reporting tools and data display functions for you to check up on your saved documents.

Although there is still a level of searchability within the drive, the lack of automated naming schemes and standardization proves that shared drives are not effective document management strategies. Appropriate document management solutions on the other hand, take you from an unstructured, manual process, to a secure, automated and structured system.

Myth #2: Physical storage is a reliable solution

storageThis myth is a whopper. Storing physical documents, onsite or offsite, is more likely to cause inefficiencies than provide a reliable solution. Since paper documents are extremely susceptible to theft, loss and natural disasters, documents will have to be stored in environments that will keep the paper safe. Furthermore, when physical paper storage is your solution, you'll have to set the right room temperature and humidity so that stored documents are well preserved and do not age and degrade quickly. Both offsite and onsite storage also have hard and soft costs tied to them, which makes physical storage a less than appealing solution.

Keeping paper documents often means they aren't readily available. Often times other co-workers have the file(s). This means, you'll have to either copy the document in advance or wait for your co-worker to finish looking over it before having access to it. Other times, going through cabinets full of paper searching for the document you are looking for, is time consuming and ineffective. With a physical storage solution, documents can also be misfiled or lost, costing your organization valuable time. Removing bulky drawers and digitizing documents will free up valuable work space and even give your employees some extra legroom as well.

Proper document management solutions allow you to manage files electronically, keeping them backed-up and secure, all while limiting the use of paper documents.

Myth #3: Paper documents are technically cheaper

Fan of One Dollar BillsSince a ream of paper goes for approximately $7 you might think that paper is still cheaper than an electronic solution. On the contrary, if you were to consider all the costs associated with paper documents, you'll begin wondering why you haven't opted for a document management solution sooner. According to previous studies, the average office spends $20 on labor to file each document, businesses spend $120 to find misfiled documents, and a company usually spends $25,000 to fill a four-drawer file cabinet and $2,000 annually to maintain it. In 2014, it was also found that an average office worker in the US will use roughly 10,000 sheets of paper every year. Suddenly, that $7 ream of paper isn't the most attractive option for any business owner.

Much like the previous point, paper is a costly commodity, especially when we account for how fragile a small piece of paper is. Take any file or document with you and it's almost guaranteed to be in worse condition within a few minutes of holding it in your hand. Paper documents are also easier to fall into the wrong hands. Even if an employee were to take work home, there's no telling what could happen once the paper leaves the office. In the end, issues with paper documents can cost your company thousands of dollars, if not handled carefully. Digital documents on the other hand, are secured and monitored to prevent unauthorized access and document damage.

Myth #4: Document management is too complicated

documentsFor any company that has been working with paper documents or shared folders for a considerable amount of time, switching over to a new digital system can be intimidating. However, document management systems don't have to be complicated. They feature tools that are designed to provide an interface that's intuitive and user-friendly.

While moving to the cloud for certain industries might seem impossible, there are numerous industries that have made the switch. Legal, medical, and educational organizations originally thought they were only geared towards paper-only environments. But now they are the most common proprietors of document management solutions. Since the increased efficiency along with the reduced dependence on paper is working wonders for them, why wouldn't document management services do the same for your business?

If your company needs to reduce costs, improve business productivity, increase data security measures, and increase operational flexibility, document management solutions from DOMA Technologies is the answer. With us, you will get a quick and painless implementation, and that's no myth! If you want to learn more about document management systems and how it can benefit your company, get in touch with us today.

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