At this point, it’s no surprise to say that almost everything is going digital. From entertainment to communication to professional tasks, everything can be done online or through offline apps. Small businesses can benefit from using this technology to your advantage.
One of the best pieces of software that a business can invest in is a document management system. There are a number of benefits that a small business owner can take advantage of by using tools like these.
1. It Saves a Lot of Time
Sorting through page after page of files gets tiring and it takes up a lot of time. A business can even lose as much as one to two hours every day to this task. When files are scanned into a document management system and don’t require as much time to comb through, this can be cut down to as little as 10 to 20 minutes of document management a day.
This not only saves employees some hassle but it also gives them time to work on more profitable tasks. This can mean that they can spend more time with clients or customers making sales, improving customer service, or even working on internal tasks like accounting. In this way, scanning files into a document management system can improve a small businesses’ bottom line.
2. Files Can Be Easily Searched
One of the ways that document scanning saves time is that it makes files easy to find. Instead of rifling through a filing cabinet, users can type what they need into a search bar. This is especially helpful when an employee is on the phone with a client. The ability to pull something up right away goes a long way in customer service.
It’s important to watch out for OCR software because it’s absolutely crucial. This scans PDFs and makes them searchable by content. Since PDFs are the standard now, it makes life much easier to simply look them up. It’s a good idea to choose software that has this feature initially. This way, it doesn’t take up time later and if any updates come up and users know they can visit here for the replacement.
3. Documents Are Better Protected
Security is a key concern when it comes to bookkeeping. This goes double when dealing with sensitive client information such as medical records or payment information. If this data is compromised it isn’t only inconvenient but it can damage the trust customers have in the company.
Unfortunately, there’s only so much that can be done when securing physical files. Usually, a locked filing cabinet is all they get. When they’re kept digitally, they can be password-protected. This can be further broken down into who can simply view and who’s allowed to edit a certain document.
It can also help protect files from physical damage as well. If there’s a scenario like a flood or fire, paper files are likely going to be destroyed. However, digital documents are usually kept online meaning they’re safe even if the computer they were scanned in on is destroyed. Even if a company is required to keep a physical copy of something, this is a good reason to have a digital backup.
4. It Costs Less
The amount a small business spends on office supplies like paper is pretty shocking. According to the Houston Chronicle, even businesses with as few as four employees can spend as much as $77 to $92 per employee in a month. This can add up fast and make quite a dent in a company’s retained earnings.
One of the best ways to cut down the cost for office supplies is to transition to a paperless office. This can cut down on the amount of paper that needs to be bought as well as associated costs like printer ink and pens or pencils.
Fewer physical files also means less clutter. That can go a long way for a small firm. The extra space can be used for important tasks and make the office more inviting to consumers. It can even potentially allow downsize to a more affordable, fitting office. While going paperless might seem like a minute saving at first, those savings add up to a significant value.
5. Documents Can Be Accessed Anywhere
It’s already been mentioned that document management systems aren’t isolated in the computer they were scanned in on. They can instead be accessed from anywhere as long as the user has the credentials to let them into the program. They can view or edit files in the system from any computer in any location.
This is an increasingly important feature as remote work becomes more common. It allows employees who aren’t directly at an office computer to still complete necessary tasks. There are also other situations where remote work would be possible. For instance, if a mother on maternity leave or an employee out sick wants to work from home, they can.
6. Its Environmentally-Friendly
It’s only common sense to say that less paper is better for the environment. What does that mean for a company, though?
In today’s world, consumers put a lot of stock into socially conscious companies. If a business shows interest in the world around them instead of just their profit, this is good press. Eliminating paper is a great way to get started on an endeavor to be more environmentally conscious. This is something that a company has to stick to, though. According to a report from the Norwegian School of Management, consumers are naturally skeptical of socially responsible companies. Finding out that a small business isn’t actually dedicated to change can cause a big problem with public relations.
There are plenty of reasons to use document scanning in an office. This includes everything from saving time and money to increasing security and reducing the company’s carbon footprint. Even better, there aren’t many reasons to not create digital copies of a business’ files. It’s a great idea to step into the modern world and take advantage of the benefits of document scanning.