Last Updated on 2nd June 2020
The paperless office is increasingly becoming something to strive for. And as we’re working from home, going paperless in favour of a digital record keeping system can benefit a business in many ways—from freeing up physical space, to improving information security. With digital records, the right people can access them wherever they are, whether they’re at home or in the office.
How might your business benefit from digital record keeping?
Quick, Easy Document Access
For any employees who deal with paperwork or data—especially in large volumes—being able to easily and quickly access the information can help them be more productive. Any time that’s spent searching for a missing file is wasted time, which is an unwanted cost to the business.
Digital record keeping is a great step forward for making information easy to search for, find, retrieve, and edit, without having to move a step. Files are never removed from their location, because it’s all recorded digitally, so lost files become a thing of the past.
It’s also easy to restrict access to sensitive or confidential information, and ensure that every employee can access the information they need, any time. Digital information can also be accessed from outside the workplace, opening up possibilities for remote working, and eliminating the need to take paperwork out of the office.
Improve Data Safety and Security
Keeping data safe and secure – especially sensitive data – is a high priority for any business. A digital record keeping system can improve security in multiple ways. One way in which security improves is that it’s much easier to restrict access to digital data than to physical data. Restricting information access means there’s less opportunity for data to be lost or stolen. And if data is store digitally, it’s possible to examine data keeping records to determine when data is retrieved or altered. This means that accidental errors can be fixed, and security breaches can be identified.
Another consideration is that going digital means that it’s easier to create data backups that can be stored in the cloud or off-site at other secure locations. Approach digital data storage with care, ensure it’s all backed up correctly, and it becomes that much easier to recover from accidental data loss.
According to the GDPR, the right to erasure means that anyone can at any time request that any data you hold about them is deleted from your business’s database, provided there’s no compelling reason to retain it.
What if that data is held by multiple individuals or departments, in multiple different physical locations? Finding and destroying the data can become a time-consuming job. Digital storage is easier to deal with, but even then, the information might be held in multiple digital locations. However, only digital storage can actually solve the problem, as GDPR-compliant data storage solutions can make it easier to locate and delete sensitive data.
Once all data is being saved in the same digital location, it becomes much easier to make sure every employee is performing tasks and filing documents in the same way. When each department or individual in an organisation has their own system of recording keeping it can quickly become impossible for people to find anything they didn’t file themselves. A digital system makes this problem a thing of the past.
In a workplace that relies on paper information systems, collaboration may require that members of a team be in the same physical location in order to work on a given project. But if the data they’re working with is stored digitally, it becomes much easier to work collaboratively. Digital record keeping and data storage can make it more efficient for employee teams to work on group tasks, improving productivity and getting projects completed more quickly.
Improve the Workplace Environment
How much physical space do filing cabinets, in and out trays, and other physical storage solutions take up in your workplace? And what could you do with all that space if it were freed up?
Switching to digital storage and record keeping could help you access useful office space, by allowing you to get rid of filing cabinets and other document storage. No more archives full of dusty files, plus you benefit from more free space, and documents that are easy to find and use. The workplace is less cluttered, and more aesthetically pleasing, too.
And what’s more, going paperless is also a great way to reduce waste and reduce your business’ carbon footprint.
Going Digital Gives You Many Avenues for Improvement
What could your business stand to gain by switching to a paperless, or reduced-paper, record keeping system? A less cluttered workplace, lower environmental impact, more efficient employee workflow, and data that’s more safe and secure. Depending on your current setup, you could gain a wide range of benefits simply by digitising your existing files, and opting for a paperless system.