Currently, about 95% of business information exists in the form of paper documents. It’s a startling statistic, given the rapid technological advancements in the business world over the last few decades.
At the moment, companies cite effective management of information as the biggest challenge they face. Regardless of the nature or size of your business, the ability to manage information effectively is a major contributor to success in tough economic times.
An organization that stores information electronically can manage business processes much better than its competitors. Converting paper-based documents to digital files requires reliable scanning services.
Before outsourcing scanning services, it helps to know what your business stands to gain by storing information electronically.
Perhaps the biggest advantage of electronic documents is that they’re easy to back up and retrieve. Imagine the nightmare of losing all your paper-based information in the event of a disaster.
Another benefit of going paperless is that you don't need to worry about the wear and tear that physical files undergo. Moreover, you get to conserve lots of space as all information exists electronically, not in a mountain of papers.
Choosing the Right Scanning Services
Outsourcing document scanning services is a proven way for businesses to reduce costs for your business. You get to concentrate on your core business operations while someone else handles specialist activities. In this section, we give you some essential tips in choosing the right scanning service provider in your area.
1. Verify the Company’s Expertise and Experience
Getting things right when it comes to scanning requires enough expertise and experience above all else. Your service provider should be able to understand the unique requirements of your company. A document scanning expert who has a good grip on best practices when it comes to records and information management can provide the best solution for your document management needs.
Look for a professional with experience in serving businesses similar to yours. For instance, if you run a law firm, find an agency with a proven track record of scanning documents for other law firms. You need someone knowledgeable in customizing file imaging as well as conversion services for litigation and e-discovery purposes.
2. Check Their Range Of Services
Different document scanning companies offer different services. Some will simply offer document scanning services and give you a CD containing the images.
Your best option is to work with a scanning provider who offers a wide range of document imaging services, including 3D scanning services. Doing so makes records management a lot simpler and quicker for you.
3. Think of Your Document Management Needs in the Long-Term
The main goal of digitizing your business information is to streamline your workflow processes and ultimately increase efficiency. That’s why you need to find a scanning services provider who can provide a robust business document management system to help you organize and store digital files.
An automated business document management system helps you achieve:
- Quick document retrieval
- Direct fax and email capabilities
- Simultaneous access to electronic files by the user
4. Inquire About Quality Assurance
Top document scanning agencies have proven systems for verifying that any information is captured accurately. There are quality assurance checks in every step of the imaging project to ensure the result meets the highest level of quality standards.
Before you hire a scanning provider, verify whether they visually check the output in the course of imaging and indexing. The objective should always be ensuring that images are 100% accurate and readable.
5. Inquire About Document Privacy Protection
The security of your sensitive personal or business information is paramount. What steps does the provider take to ensure the privacy of your documents when providing business or personal document scanning services?
Is the provider going to image your documents locally, or will they use a third party? Find out whether the company has modern security monitoring systems in the scanning facility. Inquire about the chain of custody processes applied during scanning.
Ultimately, you want the assurance that the provider will have firm control of all of your images and documents at every step of the way.
6. Check the Scanning Technology in Use
The best scanning service providers in the industry invest in modern software and hardware. To meet the highest quality standards, a scanning agency needs to have a comprehensive technology roadmap. Additionally, they need to update their infrastructure regularly.
Inquire from your potential service provider the technology they use. Is their software accurate? Can their system handle large volumes of documents?
7. Find Out Whether They Have Enough Qualified Personnel
Given that your scanning provider will be dealing with your sensitive and valuable information, their staff must be trained to a high level.
Firstly, employees need to be knowledgeable when it comes to the scanning process. Also, they should have the necessary training to input critical information, so it's easy to perform searches. Finally, all members of staff need to be keenly screened to guarantee the security of clients' information contained in the documents they'll be imaging.
8. Document Storage and Destruction
After the provider has scanned your documents, it’s time to scan the documents that need retaining and the ones to be destroyed. A reliable document scanning company knows which documents need to be retained for a long time according to federal law. Certain documents need to be readily available for up to 10 years for official inspection.
As for document destruction, you need a company with the right equipment to do the job properly. The last thing you want is to work with a company that’s so careless that documents containing your vital information are found in public waste sites. Think of the consequences of that data exposure to the public.
Choose the Right Scanning Provider
The ability to access essential business data quickly is one of the surest ways to remain efficient and competitive in the current market place.
In today’s world, storing your business information digitally can simplify work processes in your company and give you an edge over your competition. Finding the right company to provide you with document scanning services is an essential step in converting your paper documents to electronic files.
Are you looking for scanning services perfectly suited for your business? Contact us today.