For a variety of confidentiality, security or timing reasons, many companies need to make sure their documents never leave the premises. So what happens if you need your documents scanned, indexed and uploaded into a document management system but you don’t want to invest in both human capital and equipment to do such a large conversion yourself? In these cases, you’ll want to consider an experienced on-site document scanning provider.
Not all document scanning service bureaus offer on-site document scanning services and not all that do might meet your requirements. How do you select the right on-site document scanning partner? Consider the following:
- Who is scanning your documents?
- Project management
- Scanning software and hardware
- Document management services
Who Is Scanning Your Documents?
When bringing outside scanning operators, you’ll want to understand the service bureau’s employee screening processes. Do they perform background checks and substance abuse screenings? Do the employees sign confidentiality agreements? Are they HIPAA-certified? What kind of liability insurance does the company carry?
Having experienced supervisors who communicate well ensures that projects run smoothly. Who is going to supervise the scanning processes and people? How much experience do they have? There should be points of contact at both the on-site location and the service bureau’s home office in case any issues arise—especially after hours if scanning in multiple shifts.
Scanning Software and Hardware
The scanning hardware used should reflect the document size, condition and volume that needs to be scanned. Reputable on-site scanning providers only use high-speed production document scanners that can handle any sized business document in any condition—otherwise they could easily break down during the project. Additionally, confidential information may be in bound materials, which requires scanning on flatbed scanners. Engineering drawings require large format scanners.
Your on-site document scanning partner should also use the same document capture, image enhancement, indexing, and OCR-optical character recognition software at your facility that they use at theirs. Staff should be well versed in using this software as well as performing regular maintenance on the equipment, since they may be there for an extended period. They will also need to bring enough supplies and consumables to maintain the scanners throughout the project. We recommend having scanner rollers cleaned prior to every shift to maximize throughput and image quality and to minimize potential maintenance issues.
Document Management Services
After your documents have been scanned, you have a number of choices as to what to do with the digitized images. You can store them in a cloud document management system, in-house document repository or as PDFs in a legacy system. Additionally, what will you do with the paper documents after they’ve been scanned—store them or have them shredded? We recommend that you ensure your on-site scanning partner has the capabilities to help you manage your scanned documents prior to beginning the project.