March 1, 2013 by Mitch Taube Categories: Document Scanning

When working with a document scanning company, you can have a first class experience without having to pay first class prices if you know what to look for. This guide will show you what a first-class outsourced document scanning experience looks like so you can avoid the equivalent of flying coach on an overbooked flight with flight delays, no food service and lost luggage.


Like with a car service, your scanning provider will pick up your boxes or arrange for their collection by a trusted carrier. Unlike packing, you need not worry about organizing all of your documents in boxes.  Just make sure the boxes are full and securely taped to ensure no documents are lost in transit.


When your boxes arrive at the document scanning facility, they will be logged in. Information such as number of boxes, box and batch identifiers, client and project name, etc. are captured electronically and a barcode is affixed so that each box is tracked through the entire process and any document is available to you at a moment’s notice if required for any reason.


Because of their confidential and business-critical nature, your documents need to be handled and processed securely. This includes hiring employees that have successfully passed stringent background checks and ensuring security throughout the facility with door access controls and video surveillance. Massive processing capability for reliability and redundancy for uninterrupted service also provide peace of mind.


Prepping is the most labor-intensive part of the process and needs to be conducted with great care so that documents are not damaged or lost. Prepping includes unfolding documents, removing staples and clips, repairing torn documents, taping small documents to larger sheets to go through the scanner, and inserting document break sheets to identify where batches start and end. Preppers should be trained on how to correctly prepare each document.

In Flight

Trained scanner operators will then scan your documents on production-grade document scanners with advanced image enhancement features.  The scanner’s ultrasonic multi-feed detection function prevents multiple pages from being scanned as one. The resulting images are then examined by a separate quality control department looking for bad document breaks, barcode sheets that did not automatically get removed, poor quality images, missed pages, etc. If necessary, pages are rescanned and replaced in the order they were originally scanned.

If your documents need to be indexed, scanned images are released for keying and verification based on approved client keying specifications. Keyed documents are then passed through multiple quality control steps.

First Class Service

As with first class flight attendants, a dedicated project manager will ensure the best possible experience by serving as your main point of contact. Among other things, the project manager conducts extensive quality control of data and when required, performs post-processing of data such as match-n-merge of index fields with client provided database. They are ultimately responsible for your job being set-up, processed and delivered smoothly and on time.

Final Destination

Once scanned, indexed and reviewed, your images need to be uploaded to your document management system via secure FTP using SSL encryption (the same encryption as online banking transactions) and/or burned to CDs/DVDs. The original paper documents then need to be returned, stored offsite or shredded following the successful execution of an Authorization for Destruction form that is signed by you.

Ask Questions

While asking a lot of questions of the TSA might land you in a windowless room with a one-way mirror and an FBI agent, it’s important that you ask how your provider handles the document scanning process to ensure your business critical documents will be treated in a first-class manner.

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