Whether they’re physical paper or in electronic form, documents are a vital component of just about any organization or business. However, finding a good way to manage your business data—filing, storing, and locating files— can be challenging if you’re still using old-school methods.
To address that problem, you have to consider modern solutions for efficient document management. Here's a list of some of the benefits you can get by taking that route:
1. Save Time And Money
Managing paper files can be expensive and time-consuming. When they aren’t managed properly, employees can spend hours every week sourcing and organizing them.
According to statistics, the typical office worker spends about 30-40% of their day searching for documents. Businesses also spend USD$20 in labor for filing documents, USD$120 for finding misfiled documents, and USD$220 in reproducing lost documents.
This issue becomes even more expensive and time-consuming if you have a hybrid or remote work business model. Struggling to find data or information won’t be as simple as asking for the help of your co-worker sitting next to you. Instead, you’ll have to send a message to the appropriate person and wait, possibly for hours, to hear back regarding the simple matter of a document’s location.
Such unnecessary costs and wasted time managing documents can restrict your budget, obstruct productivity, and limit your business’ growth potential. Instead of that, you can use your time and resources for tasks that contribute to your business by adopting a document management solution. If it’s possible for you to have a completely paperless office, don’t hesitate to go for it.
2. Enhance Security
Data breaches and cyberattacks have become a common thing in the modern world. These threats can expose business documents or customer and employee information, which would be detrimental to the survival of your small enterprise. Thus, all businesses should be aware of such problems and take the necessary steps to protect themselves.
With proper document management, you can reduce the risk of breaches. While you can secure files in locked filing cabinets and have security protocols in place, these are considered ineffective and time-consuming.
Adopting a reliable document management system will allow you to encrypt digital documents and assign security levels to them. This means that files can be accessed by specific individuals or employees in certain departments only. As a result, even insider hacks can be prevented.
In addition, most solutions provide a secure storage location to file and store sensitive data and documentation. Also, file transfers are easy and seamless. You can conduct secure file transfer by GoAnywhere or similar companies to move and store documents in the most convenient way possible.
3. Generate Reports With Ease
Compiling data and creating reports is another arduous task that can be simplified with proper document management.
There are programs out there that can automate reporting, which would help lighten your employees’ workload. You may customize reports to match your business needs—whether you need inventory reports or operational reports, document management systems make them doable.
4. Reduce File Volume And Duplicates
Businesses produce a significant number of reports, files, and emails on a daily basis. However, statistics show that only 5-10% of business records have significant value. This means that out of all the data and documents an enterprise has, only a portion of it may be necessary or useful to keep.
Proper document management can help you declutter needless documents. You can control the growth of records and retain only the relevant data. By utilizing a modern solution, you can follow a set retention schedule outlining how long documents need to be kept and when to dispose of them.
In addition, good document management can help reduce file duplicates and redundancies. File redundancy or duplication is having the same information stored in several places, resulting in accidentally deleting the wrong files or accessing old versions of them. File duplicates not only take up storage space but can also lead to loss of crucial data, the need to repeat work, wrong data forwarding, and loss of time to fix any mistakes.
By implementing efficient document management, you don’t need to sift through clutter, and confusion won't arise among your employees.
5. Version Control And Organization
Whether you’re still using physical paper documentation or have gone digital, it can be tough to determine if the file you’re looking at is the most updated version. A survey shows that 33% of employees struggle with version control, leading to disorganization and confusion.
With a document management solution, you can prevent such headaches by tracking document history and edits. This way, you can see all the changes that have been done to a document and get access to the latest version available.
6. Stay Compliant
Every industry has a set of data compliance requirements, and it can be challenging to adhere to all of them. Most compliance certifications can be complex, and paper-based systems or the more simplistic cloud repositories don’t have enough power to meet such compliance requirements.
Failing to meet such requirements can set you up for legal trouble and potentially hefty fines. Not only that, but it can also damage your business’ reputation and take a toll on your bottom line.
Practicing good document management and taking advantage of modern solutions can empower your small business to tick the boxes that demonstrate regulatory compliance and to improve control and visibility. A document management system can make compliance with tax laws, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act or HIPAA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration or OSHA, and other state and federal regulations much more accessible. What’s more, you can automatically organize and secure documents and files per regulations and store them without hassle.
7. Have Adequate Backup
Filing and storing documents can be risky. Natural disasters, accidents, and cyberattacks can destroy years’ worth of valuable data and cause serious problems for your business.
Ensuring the preservation of your business’ assets is a crucial benefit of every effective document management program. Following a document management policy can help keep your sensitive data protected in the event of a natural disaster or emergency as it involves excellent data backup and recovery, which is a must if you want your business to stay afloat.
Organizing your business documents may not be the most exciting task to tackle, but it’s not something you can ignore or forego, either. Taking efficient document management measures can help streamline your workflow and revolutionize your business-critical processes.