Why your business needs to digitise its paper documents and processes

Written by Annie Button, Author at People Development Network

If your business is still in the habit of printing out paper documents and keeping documentation in paper files, now could be the right time to look into making the switch. Digitising your documents can have a huge range of benefits to your business, as you can enjoy better green credentials, additional space and improved customer service. Here are some of the key reasons that you should consider making the switch.

It is really easy to make the switch

Many businesses are put off the idea of digitising their documentation because they believe that the whole process will be lengthy, expensive and complicated. But none of this has to be the case. While it can be daunting to think about changing the whole way that your system operates, it can be for the best.

Mark Lowe, Director at digitisation specialists Document Options told us “Switching from paper to digital is more straight-forward than most people think. It is important to partner with a service provider that can manage the entire process for you; from preparation, scanning and archiving through to hosting the documents online and allowing your team to easily search and access them. Once the paper documents have been scanned and the customer is happy, we would usually store them for a period before providing a secure destruction service by way of confidential onsite shredding.

It will save you money

Digitising your business saves you money – it all comes down to productivity. A business working and run by paper documents can actually be held back. Having a huge number of paper files to sort through every time someone needs a specific set of data can be extremely time consuming for your staff, and very inefficient for your business processes.

Moving to digital documentation will mean that employee no longer have to sift through endless paper – data can be pulled instantly with the click of a mouse. This allows staff to get on with their job much faster and be more efficient at work. You might be amazed at the cost saving implications that this can have on your business.

It will improve your customer service

Having purely paper documents can create issues with your customer service, which making the switch to digital can alleviate. Your current system of paper documents likely takes a long time to search for when you are looking for key information. This is simply a waste of your time, and worse, it can mean that it takes you much longer to deal with customers, clients and supplier who are left waiting for information.

Storing your documents on a digital system allows them to be searchable – they can then be found instantly without the employee having to leave their work station. It is also true that if you reduce the costs of managing your documentation with a digital service, you can spend some of that money on providing better customer service and front-of-house.

It provides better security

Paper documents are a notorious security risk. These copies can very easily be misplaced or lost where they could easily fall into criminal hands. Additionally, some criminals have become highly adept at stealing information from paper documents – even those that have already been shredded. Note, of course, that data loss now has far more serious ramificationsdue to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

This means it is vital that your business puts in the resources to ensure that documents are secure. One of the best ways to do this to digitise them. With digital documents it is much easier to maintain control over the system and allow access only to specific individuals.

It is a boost for sustainability

If your business has a green conscience and wants to do more for the environment, there can be no argument that switching to digital documents is the right thing to do. If you currently hold paper documents that means that you are using up significant amounts of paper, which will end up simply being shredded or thrown away. In fact, recent statistics show that more than half of all pages that get printed are simply thrown away. With digital documents, no paper is wasted.

When you switch to a more environmentally friendly system it can also make your staff feel more positive about the business. Going paper free might not be possible, but you can start to make changes for the good of the company and the planet.

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