The decision to create digital files of your paper records is always a smart one. However, the bulk scanning process can get expensive if you waste time and money without a plan. Here we look at five tips to lower your document scanning project price so you see the best ROI for your digital transformation.
1. Lower Paper Scanning Price by Doing Your Own Record Prepping
There’s a lot of prep work required when documents are scanned. You can save a lot of money by having your own team do the prep work, including:
- Remove staples, rubber bands, paper clips, etc.
- Repair torn and damaged pages
- Remove pages from binders or other types of binding
- Organize pages to ensure they are scanned in the proper order
By getting everything organized, your document scanning service can focus on scanning. This reduces costs because the most time-consuming steps are out of the way. Although scanning is the bulk of the work, an efficient scanning company can get through the work quite quickly when all the prep work is done for them. You can also organize things in a more logical manner, so the scanned documents are easier to index.
During this process, consider what documents you can weed out. If information is now irrelevant, outdated, or not required for compliance, this is your chance to get rid of papers you don’t need. By weeding out unnecessary documents, you can reduce the scope of your bulk scanning project and shred the papers you no longer need.
2. Pack and Deliver Your Documents in Boxes to Lower Paper Scanning Price
If your paper records are stored in various filing cabinets, storage shelves, standard boxes, etc., packing them in banker boxes makes it much easier to transport them to the scanning facility. In fact, you can combine prep and packing to kill two birds with one stone. Boxes can be labelled to keep everything organized.
Most document scanning services are happy to pick up your box of documents and deliver them to their facility. However, if you have a contract with a courier, you might find it cheaper to ship your records on your own. Look into costs and compare them to what your scanning service is charging to determine what is more cost-effective.
3. Recruit Help to Lower Paper Scanning Price and Avoid Issues and Loss
Depending on the size of your organization, delegating work to just one person can increase the risk of errors. When possible, recruit help from all involved departments to ensure you spread out the responsibility to the right people. These team members provide expertise, such as HR personnel who understand what records must be maintained or a legal team member to ensure you remain compliant. You also generally have a designated leader representing the departments affected by the scanning project. Although it might seem like overkill, it’s better to cover all bases, so irreparable mistakes aren’t made.
Some examples of compliance issues posed during the scanning process include:
- Migration to the Child Protection Information Network (CPIN)
- General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
- Ontario Health and Safety
- Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHIMIS)
- Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA)
- Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA)
With proper management of paper record compliance, you avoid compliance issues and information loss and increase security.
4. Plan Your Information Architecture and Indexing to Lower Paper Scanning Price
Information architecture keeps everything organized and groups relevant documents together before you begin. Because scanning should improve the search process for documents, your architecture and indexing are among the benefits of going paperless. It allows you to logically name and store your documents, so they are easy to search. Creating an indexing format prior to scanning is a major time saver. It uses effective metadata naming practices based on the criteria you set that make the most sense for your operations. Through indexing, you make the search and retrieval of documents easier.
A well-thought-out document indexing format uses tags or related information that is used for all documents. As a result, moving forward, everyone in your organization will use it to save and retrieve documents. Think of metadata as keywords when searching for something online. It applies logical words, terms, or phrases most people would use to search for specific documents. Because everyone might have their own method or logic, setting rules ensure everyone uses the same save and search terms.
5. Incorporate a Document Management Software to Increase ROI for Your Paper Scanning Project
Using document management software to access data in hand with metadata ensures the process of creating, saving, and storing documents is completely streamlined. Without document management software in place, your investment in your paper scanning project is a waste of money. Implementing a document management system optimizes your scanning efforts, so the saving, storage and retrieval of paper records become more efficient. You can increase your ROI for your project with the following benefits:
- Improved document management workflow across all departments with automatic document routing
- Reduced time for historical research with instant document retrieval capabilities
- A single source for all paper documents to reduce errors and improve accuracy
- Improved security for all paper records
- Easier, real-time collaboration for paper document sharing
- More security when sharing paper documents
- Reduced costs for sharing paper documents without the need for photocopies
- Reduced delays for approvals or sending and receiving critical documents using mobile access anywhere, any time
- Informed decisions with access to up-to-date documents
- Peace of mind knowing your documents are secure
Choosing Document Management Software
When choosing document management software, look for key features that cover all your needs, including:
- A web-based, user interface to avoid installation costs and constant software updates at every workstation
- Mobile support so your team and authorized third parties can access documents anywhere, anytime, from any device
- Ability to become a paperless office with simple to design, easy to use, e-forms and scalability
- Management of all file types/formats
- Integration with Microsoft Office applications, SharePoint solutions, etc.
- Compatibility with document scanners or multi-function scanners to suit your needs
Your document management system is the best way to leverage your scanned document project and remain scalable to create a paperless office.
These tips will reduce the cost of your scanning project. However, when scanning paper documents to digital files, using an experienced scanning service is the best way to go. We ensure you have high-quality scans, proper digital formats, and high-speed scanning that can manage large formats. Reach out to the experts at MES for an accurate quote as well as assistance in selecting an effective document management software.