Many companies give up on automation – or don't think it's for them because “they're too small” or “it's too hard” or “it's too expensive”.
All three of those reasons are really just excuses – and bad ones at that.
In reality, there's no reason your business – and that's anyone reading this, especially manufacturers – not to benefit from document management other than simply refusing to consider it.
What's Document Management Do?
Many things, depending on your business. Most simply, document management stores your information in a central repository for easy retrieval. Here's a quick recap of document management capabilities and benefits.
- Cut costs and expenses by eliminating paper-based filing.
- Improve file organization and ability to search and access your documents.
- Streamline manual tasks like data entry and approvals.
- Share and collaborate on cross-functional documents – and know that you're always working on the most recent version!
- Improved document security and simplified compliance – audit trails track who accesses documents and permissions can prevent access to folders or individual documents.
- Automate document workflows and notifications with easy-to-use editing capabilities.
- Integrate with DocuSign (for electronic signatures), Micro
soft Dynamics, QuickBooks, and more. Document management works within your line-of-business software, it's not an extra step for users.
- Access documents with iOS and Android via laptop, tablet, or smartphone anytime and from anywhere with a secure connection.
Sounds good, right?
What's Your Office Look Like?
How are you managing your documents? Still using lots of paper? Do any of these paper frustrations resonate with you? Can you see your desk at all?
Optics aside, paper can be frustrating. Take a few examples:
- Do you ever need to access information remotely? Salespeople visiting clients, remote employees, or you have a great idea on a Saturday and you'd like to immediately work on it – can your information be accessed in any of these situations?
- How long does it take you to answer customer questions?
- Have you ever lost or misplaced a critical document? Did you lose business because of that? Spent a weekend recreating the lost information?
The pain of paper is real.
Do you scan documents? If you aren't, did you know that you can use your digital copiers to scan documents and even launch workflows? For information about scanning with copiers, read Use Your Copiers to Scan Documents – Baby Steps to Document Management.
If you do scan documents, what are you doing with the originals? With a clear audit trail that shows document integrity and that the image is a true representation of the original, document images are generally accepted as legally binding in court and as part of a business records management plans. Before throwing out all originals, do the legwork to ensure that there aren't any specific reasons to keep the originals (sometimes there are). However, more often than not you don't need to keep the paper.
I talk to companies every week who experience these issues and more, but don't know that they have an option that doesn't require MORE paper and ANOTHER filing cabinet.
If you've given up and think that the digital office is for larger companies, there is hope. Document management isn't just for large companies. It's a software tool that can benefit companies of every size – from a one-person office using a personal scanner to save documents into Google Drive folders to 50 to 100 person SMBs wanting to speed accounts payable processes through to the Fortune 500 using digital mailrooms to scan documents as they enter the building.
Document management CAN improve your business.
Take the first step. Contact us for a free document management consultation. We are proud partners of Square9, who produce GlobalSearch, a document management platform.