How do you keep track of your business’s electronic documents? How do you ensure the files are stored in the right place and accessed by only the right people? To do this, you’ll need a well-designed document management system.
These systems, sometimes known by acronyms like DMS or EDMS, center around computers and management software. What do they do? Document management systems allow you and your employees to capture, store, retrieve, and track a variety of e-documents. These can include:
- Word processing files
- Digital images in various formats
- PowerPoint files
- Expense receipts
- And more
These systems are vital for any company that uses electronic documents in its operation. However, they don’t just act like a digital filing cabinet, keeping the e-documents in order and accessible. A document management system offers some compelling benefits over paper-based versions. These include greater data security, easier compliance with various regulations, and improved employee workflows.
Enhance Data Security with Document Management
Even small businesses can handle a tremendous amount of data every day. Many of these data transactions have the potential to be exploited by cybercriminals. Hackers are continually evolving their tactics, looking for weak points in your security. These may include cracking passwords, tricking employees into downloading malware, and even stealing your data when sent to an unsecured printer.
Data security is an integral part of a document management strategy in this day and age. Here are four ways that the right system can dramatically increase the security of your business’s valuable, confidential information:
Encryption. Encryption keeps your data unreadable to everyone except the people and devices with the right key. If cybercriminals manage to copy a file that you’re sending, the data they’ve illegally accessed will be unreadable to them.
Access control. Document management lets you restrict which employees can access certain files, when, and from where. Many companies use a combination of blanket restrictions and time-sensitive permissions. Access control is an essential tool now that more companies are developing flextime and work-from-home arrangements.
Auditing. It’s not enough to lock your data down and encrypt it. You also need to keep an eye on who’s accessing it and how the information is being used. Document management systems give you a wealth of tools and reports, keeping you in charge of your company’s data.
Disaster recovery. One crucial part of data security is to explore the ‘what if?’ questions. What if a fire breaks out in the server room? What if your computer system is paralyzed by malware? What if an employee hits the wrong button and deletes a critical file? Document management systems include tools for dealing with these issues. If you are regularly backing up data, it can be quickly restored. This brings your company back online and in business.
Comply with Compliance Regulations with Document Management
Compliance regulations may not be the most exciting topic, but it’s an essential factor for every company to consider. Not complying can have some serious, lasting consequences for your business. These can include everything from hefty fees to increased oversight and canceled contracts.
It can also lead to far more significant harm if your reputation is damaged. Contractors and vendors don’t like to work with someone perceived to play fast and loose with the law. Meanwhile, your customers have other options, companies that aren´t making headlines for receiving hefty penalties.
Your document management strategy is vital for staying compliant with the regulations you operate under, such as HIPAA or the GDPR. Best of all, a document management system can be structured, which makes it relatively easy to stay compliant. It can throw up alerts if someone is improperly accessing data, automatically encrypt certain kinds of files, lock systems targeted by suspicious log-ins, and more.
One of the biggest benefits of document management is the digital paper trail it creates. With a few keystrokes, you can audit how your company’s data is handled. This helps you keep the business in compliance. It can help prove your company’s good-faith efforts if you face legal issues or federal scrutiny.
Streamline Workflows with Document Management
A generation ago, ‘paperwork’ was synonymous with busy work and struggling through a mountain of time-consuming minutia. People dreaded it, from the boss down to the interns. Those old, paper-based documents could slow down the rhythm of the working day.
Papers could get jammed. Files could be misplaced or put into the wrong cabinet. A doctor’s unreadable handwriting could take minutes to decrypt. Sometimes, an employee forgot to sign out an important document, leaving it missing in action on the next shift. These minor errors would compound, eating away at the working hours.
At every step of paper-based document management, the workers are responsible for keeping the system going. This is time-consuming on the best of days and difficult to pull off during crunch times. Because so little could be automated, even one error could bring workflow to a halt.
Document management systems are intuitive, and many of their processes are automated. This includes transferring files to colleagues or printers, saving work, backing up data, checking access permissions, etc.
Processes like these go on in the background. Thanks to computing speed, they happen in the blink of an eye. By removing the time-draining aspects of document management, employees can continue their workflows without tedious delays.
Keep Your Business Flowing and Your Data Safe With Document Management
A carefully thought-out document management strategy doesn’t just keep your data where you want it. Document management can also give your company greater security and improve regulatory compliance. With so many document system processes automated; your workplace will also enjoy faster and more efficient workflows.
Are you interested in how a document management system can work with your Green Bay business? Contact Wisconsin Document Imaging today to learn more.