You know the drill – you’re on the phone with a client, or a vendor, or the auditor and you need an answer now. The answer is buried in file – someplace. So, instead of providing the answer right then and there, you say “I’ll have to call you back,” and you spend the next three hours tracking down the information you need.
This is no way to run a business!
What’s the Real Cost of Paper?
Manually filing and retrieving paper documents takes time. Research shows that it can cost as much as:
- $20 to file a document in a folder or filing cabinet
- $120 to find a misfiled document (if you can find it at all)
- $220 to reproduce a document that was lost
- the average document in an office gets copied 19 times
- 7.5% of all documents get lost
- 3% of the remainder get misfiled
- professionals spend 5-15% of their time reading information, but up to 50% looking for it
Sure, your business may be different. You may run a “tight ship.” But, the fact is that no amount of good management can make up for the basic inefficiency of paper-based systems. Maybe it’s time to look at a different way of doing things.
Consider Re-designing Some Business Processes
If you want to reduce the problems that are inherent in paper-based systems and explore more efficient ways of doing things, you can’t avoid identifying and re-designing procedures that are made cumbersome, costly and inefficient because they’re paper-based.
Start with paper-heavy departments: (1) Accounting; (2) Human Resources; (3) the Mail Room.
Do away with physical forms and physically signing printed documents. In the United States, the ESIGN Act of 2000 gives validity to electronic signatures, making an electronic signature as legally valid as a hard-copy signature.
Use a Central Cloud-Based ECM Solution
Face it – the Cloud is here to stay. Digital is the way of today, and the future. A properly secured Cloud ECM Solution is safer than paper. Despite publicized reports of systems that have been hacked, it’s important to realize that, like airplane crashes, hacking incidents make the news precisely because they’re not usual. And, in most instances, lack of stringent security measures have contributed to the hack.
There are Cloud- based Electronic Content Management and Electronic Document Management solutions available today that employ hackers to challenge their systems daily in order to ensure their lack of vulnerability. So what are you waiting for? See what a difference going paperless can make for your business.