February 22, 2013 by Susan Matthews Categories: Document Management

Many organizations are drowning in paper and faced with the persistent question: What is the best way to minimize and manage paper? It is a problem that plagues both private and public organizations, and was highlighted in a report released last summer describing how the Veterans Administration is struggling to store and manage the volumes of documents it must process.

While your organization’s paper problem may not be as extreme as the Veterans Administration, it highlights the huge issue paper presents if not managed in an efficient way. Whether it’s a document that requires a signature, an invoice that needs to be approved and processed immediately, or a client file that needs to be easily accessed from another office, organizations must effectively manage the paper that drives their processes. Both from a cost and risk perspective, storing information in its original paper format represents an inefficient way of doing business that is robbing your company of profit and a competitive edge.

Paper – The Enemy of Efficiency and Profitability

Consider the following scenarios and what they cost your organization:

  • A Document That Can’t Be Found: What happens when a document is nowhere to be found? Does someone else have it on their desk? Is it stored in the wrong location? Not being able to immediately access critical documents such as a customer’s contract or a signed order, doesn’t only slow down processes, but it’s costly in both time and money. How much time has been spent searching for documents in your office? How many invoices have been paid late because they could not be located?
  • A Disaster Waiting to Strike: Whether the disaster is a fire, water, or storm – your paper records can become damaged, potentially beyond repair. Will you be able to recreate the information lost? If so, what kind of time and financial effort will you need to invest? If not, what do you do?
  • Documents Copied 19 Times: On average, a document is copied 19 times requiring extensive spending on paper, toner, copier and printers. How many documents are in your office? How much money are you spending on copying your documents?
  • An Invoice Paid Twice: Processing paper invoices is cumbersome and inefficient and many times leads to invoices being paid twice or late. Management has limited visibility into the process which further minimizes control. Problems arise when processing transactional paper documents such as order, contracts, applications etc. How often do you lose control of the paper in business transactions?
  • Wasted Office Space: A file cabinet takes up 17 square feet of office space, space that can be dedicated to revenue generating efforts. How many file cabinets are in your office?

Grab on to a Life Raft

By scanning your paper documents and managing them with document management software, you can lift yourself out of a sea of paper, automate your business processes and realize stronger profitability and gain a competitive edge.

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