Your records should help you do business, not get in the way. However, if your record retention practices are not up to par, then you will end up wasting a lot of time. Fortunately, getting your record retention practices in order is not very hard if you know what steps to take. That being said, here are five record retention best practices that will help you save a whole lot of time:
1. Use both sides of paper for your physical records
One poor record keeping practice that can literally double the amount of physical records that you have to sift through is using only one side of a piece of paper to print documents. Instead of doing this, make double sided printing one of your team's record retention best practices. You will not only save a lot of time due to the smaller amount of paperwork to manage, but you will also significantly reduce the cost of record keeping.
2. Do away with as much paper records as possible
This is the most important of all of the record retention best practices on this list. By transforming your paper records into digital files, you can save countless wasted man hours. This is due to the fact that converting your records to digital files streamlines your team's ability to access the exact files they are looking for right when they are needed -- instead of having to take the time to sort through mounds of paperwork (even the most well-sorted paper records will take more time to sift through than digital records). As an added bonus, converting your records to digital will also save your company even more money than double sided printing does.
3. Strong digital document management practices
Even after you have converted all of your records to digital, there are still ways to save some time. One of the first things that you need to do is implement strong digital document management practices. With the right document management systems and software, this can be done quickly and easily. This will make accessing all of your digital records as easy as an internet search.
4. High volume document scanning
Just because you converted most of your records to digital doesn't mean that you won't need to convert other records in the future. That being said, converting future records to digital should not be a time consuming toil. It is for this reason that you should start using high capacity, high-speed scanners. There are individual scanners that can process hundreds of thousands of documents in a single day and hundreds of documents in a single load. This saves a lot of time by eliminating the need to constantly load a single sheet at a time and then wait endlessly as each document is scanned.
5. Cloud access to all of your documentation
If your team and business partners can access your documents on the go, instead of just when they are at your office, you can save an incredibly large amount of time. Cloud-based storage solutions solve this problem. Instead of having to request copies of documents or pay a visit to your office, they allow your team to securely access all of your documents from anywhere an internet connection is available.
Increase your productivity with better record retention and your company's bottom line will thank you
The time savings alone granted by the record retention best practices discussed above will greatly increase your team's ability to efficiently produce results. Start integrating them into your daily routine ASAP so that your company can reap these benefits soon.