When you run a business, your paper trail is extremely important. You have to track sales, expenses, investments, labor, and so many other things, and every single piece of it has written notes, receipts, or invoices that go along with it. It’s a lot to track, and that burden is exactly what gets many companies into trouble. When it comes to formal documents and private information, there are a lot of regulations in the books.
Ultimately, you need help. You need something that can improve how you keep track of information and access it when needed. You want something that makes it easier to create new documents or catalog existing work. You want a system that does a bunch of the work for you so that you are free to focus on running the business. What you want is a document management system (DMS).
An Introduction to Document Management
So, what is document management really about? The idea is to utilize automation software that takes care of all of your document needs. That can include digitizing documents, creating them, filing them, analyzing them, organizing the information, securing the files, tracking them, and backing them up. It’s a full-service solution.
The real point of investing in a document management system is that it is powerful and easy to use. When you combine those concepts successfully, you’re sure to save time and money. Your document management system can protect you. It can make you more reliable. In more ways than you can expect to count, it can improve your business in terms of functionality, efficiency, and so many other facets. It can even make your company more environmentally friendly by reducing paper waste and improving the electrical efficiency of your digital document systems.
How It Can Help You
Help comes in a number of specific forms. For starters, document management will improve your digital security. A document management system centralizes control of your documents and then puts them behind advanced, modern security protocols. This significantly reduces the risks of hacks, leaks, or any other cyber threat involving your data.
While you are enjoying advanced security, your system will dramatically reduce storage space. It’s obvious that digitizing paper files can save a lot of space. The phone in your pocket (or hand) can hold all of the information on every page of every book of your local library. It’s no contest. Still, even in terms of digital space, DMS optimizes your digital documents and can save on electronic storage space. You can use cloud services to hold info off-site. You can also use more efficient systems to reduce the amount of server and computer storage you need for the whole filing system.
Most businesses love how document management systems improve workflow and collaboration. Working with paper documents is slow. There are bottlenecks in the workflow as people sift through stacks of paper searching for the documents they need. It’s easy to lose money on wasted labor. It comes as no surprise that moving to a digital filing system can save a lot of time and effort. Digitizing all of your documents could be just the investment that helps you improve your bottom line.
What’s easy to ignore is that working with poorly organized digital documents can be even worse than working with paper versions. Remember how a phone can store more information than a library? Well, how can you ever find what you need if your filing system isn’t organized? A smart, automated system makes it easy to find and share any given document. It eliminates bottlenecks and lost or misfiled documents.
Arguably, the most important benefit of a document management system is improved data integrity. Your document management system is professional grade. That includes backup and recovery. Any quality system will include multiple backups (typically on and off-site). No matter what happens to your business that might harm the data, you have backups and a good plan of action to retrieve those backups.
Is It the Right Choice for Your Business?
Every business has documents. That means that every business can benefit from document management. Does that mean that a robust software solution is good for your business right now? The short answer is probably.
The long answer is that you can check the numbers. Almost every business stands to net a positive ROI on a DMS investment, provided they don’t overspend. How do you avoid overspending? You look for the right fit. You don’t need to buy ten times as much storage as you’ll use—just for the sake of futureproofing your document management. Instead, you can go with a provider that can offer additional storage upgrades at a time when you eventually need them.
Don’t worry about the features that you’ll never use. Real-time analytics are cool, but are they really necessary for a travel bookstore that sees a dozen customers a day? You get the idea.
Focus on a streamlined system that meets your business where it is right now. If it still has the capacity to accommodate your future growth, you’re in great shape. This mentality will prevent you from overspending. Instead, you’ll be free to reap the rewards of better workflow, security, and all of the rest.
Clearly, your Wisconsin business stands to gain plenty by looking deeper into document management. If you’d like to see some real prices and actual features of the software that could be yours, contact Wisconsin Document Imaging today. Our specialists can discuss your business and its needs. We’ll be happy to find a custom fit that is right for you.