Transforming business with digital document management
Few organisations nowadays are unaware of what an electronic document management solution is, or of the benefits of implementing EDMS.
A recent article posted on IT ProPortal, details UK firms losing thousands each month due to poor document management highlights one of these key benefits – that of the savings organisations make due to fast and efficient document retrieval.
The document remains at the heart of business processes – whether as received into an organisation, created in-house or in the form of communication to be sent out.
Earlier this month, the BBC reported on an excavation in London which had unearthed Britain’s oldest hand-written document. The Museum of London Archaeology (MOLA) dates it to 8 January AD 57, one of 400 tablets discovered at the dig at Bloomberg’s new headquarters.
The wording was carved into the wood using styluses – and just to complete the story, the tablets survived due to being preserved, covered in wet mud.
Few organisations today will have to deal with documents created on wood and the problems arising from having to process those – but even those originating in today’s more conventionally accepted form of paper can create severe processing issues.
The IT ProPortal article reports on one aspect that can contribute to a business process becoming inefficient – and that’s the time needed to find documents.
Enterprise collaboration specialist Huddle conducted a survey of accounting, advisory and consultancy businesses and found that in the US these employees work on an average of 26 documents per day with 89 seconds required to look for each document – amounting to costing the organisation $3,747 per employee each month (using the hourly billing rate of $265).
“In the UK it’s even worse” according to the article, with organisations paying out £4,238 per employee per month, calculated on 25 documents accessed each day, requiring an average of 136 seconds in search at a £204 hourly rate.
While we question the actual figures quoted and suppose that perhaps a charge-out cost has been used, the point is that searching for documents takes time, takes employees away from more productive work, and regardless of the rate used, costs organisations money. The cost burden becomes even greater for businesses spread across location and relying on outside post, and for those where off-site storage is used or where a process generally demands retrieval of documents from various areas.
With digital solutions, documents are available 24/7 at the touch of a button – from anywhere in the business, regardless of location.
Access restriction can affect efficiency in other ways. A client’s strategic policy to move a specific department to hot-desking incorporating a work-from-home rotation would have been impossible without giving staff the ability to access the documents they required as and when required.
The client identified an electronic document management solution to be the way forward, and having already automated accounts payable processing was able to leverage on their investment in the software platform to implement EDMS across the additional department.
Digital document management can also transform the efficiency of a business process involving outbound documents. Triggered by a business process, our Outgoing Documents solution automatically creates a PDF, configured to brand and style requirements and which is then delivered by most cost-effective method or sender or recipient choice – email, EDI, XMI or web.
The PDF document remains instantly accessible in case of query or for further processing requirements, and the solution has eliminated the heavy storage overhead associated with paper-based documents, as well as printing and postage costs – although a print option is available for those times when only hard-copy is applicable.
Click here to read more about how Documation can help improve your business processes