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Adopt Electronic Documents - Each Filing Cabinet Costs $25,000

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A survey from Benchmark International determined that the average four-drawer file cabinet costs $25,000 to fill (includes paper, labor, share of facility cost, etc) and $2,100 per year to maintain. Add to this the cost of

Add to this the cost of organizing, finding, and copying these files. Lost files? Add $150 on average to find it. Document imaging solves these problems while greatly enhancing your ability to search data within each file, organize and share files, and create backups for disaster recovery.

The advances of document scanning have increased tremendously over the past decade to a point where most offices can support a digital document environment without adding expensive equipment, software or staff expertise.

How to Get Started:

1.      Take an assessment of the paper files your company handles on a regular basis. Make a hierarchy that could be used to organize them – this would be similar to your filing cabinet organization method (assuming you have one). For instance:

  • Level 1: Clients
  • Level 1.1: Client Name
  • Level 1.2: Client Opportunities
  • Level 1.3: Client Contracts
  • Level 1.4: Contract Communications

Build out this hierarchy and then ask yourself what critical pieces of information you would want from each level to optimize how your staff accesses data – this will guide how you tag each document with keywords. For instance, let’s say you want to locate all client opportunity proposals – if you have tagged each digital file with the keyword “proposal” your search will return every proposal on the network instantly.

2.      Ensure you have the right equipment - most copiers made within the last few years also provide scanning capabilities and the ability to save files to a network drive – check to see if yours does. If not, dedicated document scanners are very affordable. Whatever type of equipment you choose ensure it provides a multi-page document feeder so you don’t have to scan one page at a time.

3.      Adopt a digital philosophy - Once you have the equipment to scan documents – integrate the philosophy of digital documents within your organization by requiring that every file be scanned and stored on the network. Help employees understand the financial benefits of using digital documents and how that translates to their compensation and work stability (not to mention reduced hassle from searching for lost files).

Copyright 2009

Kelly R. Short - Visit http://www.kellyrshort.com to increase sales with powerful marketing, lower operating costs using business process automation, leverage unified technology to crush your competition, and enjoy actionable advice from over 15 years of technology experience.

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