Plan Before you Scan – Document Scanning the smart way

14
Feb
2016
4 Views

Once your organization has committed to digitizing your processes, it seems the next logical step would be to purchase a scanner and get to work scanning all of your paper. Perhaps a document management software is an additional purchase you’d consider, to solve all of your paper based problems. This approach has led to many wasted dollars and hours over the last ten years. Digitizing processes doesn’t mean document scanning.

First, you must understand why you are pursuing a document scanning solution. It isn’t because you hate paper. That unproductive view will only lead to a costly battle that never ends, so long as you don’t kill the paper-creating beast. We transition to digital processes to improve workflow efficiencies. Because most information is born digitally now, it is wasteful to print and store in physical form, only to convert it back when documents are needed. If you focus on improving processes, you’ll wait to purchase your hardware and software until you understand how your workflows must change to accommodate your vision for the end result of a more efficient organization.

Second, you need to ensure  your vision for an end result is shared by your entire team. We call this Information Governance. Those who only try to impact their organization’s dependence on paper in their own silo will perpetually be disappointed as other business functions disrupt their progress and keep the document scanning treadmill running. Your entire organization must commit to a transition for you to do it efficiently, without wasting money and time with bandaid solutions.

Third, you need to sketch out a plan for how you intend to transition, including specific internal and external resources and timelines. Those who don’t plan find themselves spending unlimited amounts of money to accomplish a document scanning goal they can no longer measure financially. This is the time to consider a budget and value the benefit of transitioning each process within the organization. If, for example, your budget and value comparison shows you that you can’t afford to scan all of your physical records in a certain division, it will refocus the dialogue on what must be scanned and other solutions for dealing with records that already exist but don’t make sense to convert. This is the single largest place for project cost reduction, and it is critical that it happens upfront.

Fourth, consider the technology solutions available to make your initial transition efficient, and that make sense for your long term management of new workflows. We’ve watched countless clients switch electronic content management softwares multiple times and overbuy top of the line hardware that simply doesn’t make sense for their organizations. Remember that this is a strategic decision, not a buying decision. Cheapest and Best don’t mean good for you. Who will be using these tools and what needs do they have now and in the future? What is the interest of your vendor? What commitments do they make about seeing you through integration? Will they own the data, or will you? You only want to make these decisions once. Seek council from peer organizations and experts before signing a contract that may come back to haunt you.

Fifth, don’t underestimate the internal resources required to accomplish your conversion, even if you are outsourcing significant parts of the project. If your internal team isn’t committed to learning the technology, developing new processes, and changing the way they’ve always done it, you’ll never reach your goal. Having an internal and external project lead is smart, as they’ll balance one another’s decision making.

Sixth and Finally, the transition is never over. Your team should always be looking for optimization opportunities, and your vendors should be incentivized to do the same. Processes can always be better, people’s use of time reconsidered, vendor use and execution evaluated.

If you’d like to talk with our team of experts about developing your conversion plan, we can get you started at no cost, and with no commitment to use our project management team after planning.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Our Latest Consulting Insights

Earth Day Sustainability

This past Earth Day, April 22, 2019, the hashtag #onegreenthing circulated around social media. Some companies donned green attire and took part in a recycling or clean-up project in their community; others shared images of people planting trees or taking part in an urban garden. Secure […]

Read More

GDPR IS HERE | Is your business ready?

Disclaimer: We are not attorneys. Nothing within this post should be considered legal advice, but rather a spur to put your research hat on! Does your company collect, maintain, or process personal data of individuals within the European Union (EU)?  If so, the General Data Protection […]

Read More

PRISM International & NAID Merge to Form New Industry Association

Secure Records Solutions was honored to participate in the 2018 PRISM International Summit this week as history was made with a vote finalizing the merger between PRISM International and NAID, two industry associations in which we were already very involved. Our Consulting Team Leader, Christopher Jones, first […]

Read More

NAID Conference, NAID AAA Certification, Tallahassee Shredding, Valdosta Shredding

NAID Conference 2018

The Secure Records Solutions management team just returned from an exciting and productive National Association for Information Destruction Annual Conference in Nashville, TN. The conference was full of networking with friends in the industry, educational and motivating sessions (including one given by our very own […]

Read More

Tallahassee, Sunshine Law, Open Records Request, Public Records

Tallahassee is asked: “Are Text Messages Public Records?”

As the premier information management company in the Tallahassee area, we thought it important to share this debate with you. ABC27 WTXL introduced the discussion here on November 29th. In a world where business is conducted by text, it is not unreasonable to think that City of […]

Read More

Anonymous Location Data

Anonymous Location Data

Have you ever noticed your phone making subtle suggestions, like how long it will take for you to go somewhere at a time you often go to that place, even when you aren’t using a maps application? It was a minor annoyance in the back […]

Read More

PRISM Conference, Document Management Industry

PRISM 2017 – What’s Next for the Document Management Industry?

We’ve just returned from the summer gathering of our document management industry’s leadership, PRISM 2017. The conference was an excellent opportunity to network with contemporaries from 6 continents, all focused on the future of document management. Beyond the networking, Secure Records Solutions was in the […]

Read More

Paper Shredder, NAID Conference, Document Shredding, Paper Shredding

2017 NAID Conference

March and April have been a whirlwind around here, and it’s easy to see why when I look back over the last year. Our shredding business in Tallahassee, Thomasville, Albany, Tifton, and Valdosta has grown by 43%! While we’ve been busy on boarding new document […]

Read More

Stay Safe Online, Internet Security, Secure Records Solutions, Document Management

How to Stay Safe Online

I was traveling abroad recently when I started thinking about all of the work I do on the road, and how difficult it is to stay safe online. Just think of the many opportunities to use public or loosely managed WiFi in airport lounges, hotels, […]

Read More

Information Security, Data Management, National Data Privacy Day, January 28

National Data Privacy Day January 28th

National Data Privacy Day is a good reminder of the responsibility every organization has for taking necessary steps to protect sensitive information and prevent a data breach of client records. The responsibility of data privacy is governed by a series of laws at the industry, state, […]

Read More

EMR Software Solutions

New Year’s Resolution: Paperless. Check!

Our team establishes company goals and individual goals so that we know we are all rowing in the same direction. If your team has been talking about going paperless, but the scanning you’ve been tasked with feels like a hamster wheel that you can’t get […]

Read More