Disadvantages of Physical Records Management, And Why Should Change to Document Management Software?

03 Apr 2023

    Document management refers to the processes and resources required to organize, store and retrieve documents and automate workflows within a company or organization. Documents can be in hardcopy or digital format and a business can storage many documents such as contracts, forms, invoices, job applications, benefits enrolment information and many other records.

    Therefore, businesses currently storing documents in warehouses, libraries, corporate offices, and so on will face many issues in managing hard documents.

    1. 8 disadvantages of physical records management in the conventional way:

    a) Lack of storage space

    lưu trữ tài liệuFigure 1. Lack of storage space

    Paper documents can take up a lot of space, and the amount of paper is increasing all the time. Furthermore, documents should be kept close at hand so that they can be accessed as quickly as possible.

    b) Security issues

    Any organization, regardless of size, must safeguard its data and other valuable assets. Paper is one of the most significant information security risks for businesses because printed documents are easily lost, mishandled, or damaged, whereas digital data can be encrypted and safely stored on hard disks or electronic devices.

    c) Prone to damage

    Manual documents are easily damaged, misplaced, and stolen. A fire or natural disaster could result in the loss of critical data. If you don't have any backups, once the files are gone, there's no way to recover the data.

    d) Document transportation

    Transporting documents in a paper-based system is time-consuming, inefficient, and complicated. With a digital document management system in place, you can simply attach files to emails and send them immediately.

    e) Editing problems

    lưu trữ tài liệuFigure 2. Editing problems

    If you want to make changes to a paper-based document, you must rewrite the entire thing. This process must be repeated each time you want to make more changes. You should make a copy of the original document to distinguish all of the changes.

    f) High costs 

    One of the most significant disadvantages of paper-based document management systems is the associated costs. In addition to paper, you will require additional printers, photocopiers, stationery, and other office supplies. These expenses can quickly add up and become a significant expense in many organizations.

    g) Limit communication and collaboration

    Collaboration is extremely difficult when working with paper documents. If several department heads need to create a common document, they must print multiple copies, make all necessary changes separately, and then share their versions with one another before beginning work on the final version. Digital document management systems enable users to collaborate in a simple and quick manner. They can also keep track of all changes made.

    h) Environmental damage

    Using more paper is bad for the environment and will not help your company's green credentials much. Many of today's employees want to work for companies that prioritize sustainability, and many consumers prefer environmentally friendly options, so you should do everything you can to attract and retain them.

    lưu trữ tài liệuFigure 3. Environmental damage

    Investing in a digital document management system will reduce the amount of paper you waste around the office while increasing the efficiency and productivity of your operations. It also allows businesses to change their entire approach to data storage and management. Are you ready for a change? Is an electronic document management system the best solution for your company?

    2. Importance of strong document management

    As part of a digital transformation, an effective document management system (DMS) lets employees organize document files to:

    • Ensure staff can find the documents they need immediately in real-time
    • Protect security and confidentiality with access rights, encryption and other modern safeguards
    • Replace repetitive manual tasks with automated workflows
    • Create more sustainable processes that aren't reliant on paper

    3. How does a document management system work?

    Understanding how a document management system works can help you decide which one is right for your business. Here are the features of a document management system.

    a) Capture and process documents for a paperless office

    lưu trữ tài liệuFigure 4. Online Document

    Document management software uses several methods to capture electronic documents and convert paper files into digital form. These systems work via a variety of document capture methods, including:

    • Scanning: You should be able to scan paper documents from a multifunction office copier, high-speed or desktop scanner and a smartphone. These scans can be automatically indexed, archived, sent to the employee in charge or used to trigger a workflow.
    • OCR: OCR stands for Optical Character Recognition. This is a technology that converts text from images into data that can be used by business software. 
    • Email capture: Some systems allow you to index and store emails and their attachments in the correct project folder directly from your inbox.
    • Fax capture: Instead of printing faxes, they can be captured and saved digitally.
    • Import from other systems: Documents stored in other systems can be imported into DMS solutions. For example, these documents can be sent to a "watched" folder that uses a workflow to distribute them to the right person.
    • Electronic forms: Convenient, standardized, online forms replace outdated paper documents, hard-to-navigate PDFs, and error-prone manual data entry. Digital forms outsource data entry to the person filling out the form and required fields eliminate time spent chasing after missing information. 

    b) Track and manage documents for increased productivity

    Once documents are in the system, you can track and manage them, leading to increased efficiency throughout internal processes, better security and reduced errors.

    Here's how:

    • Access controls: Robust document management software enables you to create access controls based on role or login. Someone in sales doesn't need to see all the invoices the accounting department deals with, for example. Limiting the pool of documents each role or individual can work with lets you keep confidential documents secure and protect customer and employee privacy.
    • Audit logs:  Audit logs let you track who views, makes changes to, or prints documents supporting compliance requirements. These logs also enable you to understand how many documents a person or team processes in a period of time, making it easier to set goals and hold people accountable.
    • Version management: Once version control is turned on, when an authorized user opens a document to edit it, its status shows as “checked out.” Then the document is read-only for other users.  Every time a document is checked back in, it automatically receives a new version number.

    c) Store documents securely for disaster recovery 

    Digital documents are more secure than paper ones. First, digital copies don't tear, wear or fade. They can't be misplaced, stolen or left in the break room by accident so everyone can see them. Second, digital document management relies on the most updated security and encryption protocols, so when you do send sensitive documents, they aren't as vulnerable to hackers as they would be if you scanned them and sent them via email.

    Ultimate Content Services Platform – DocuWare: Document Management And Workflow Automation 

    Ricoh now offers DocuWare – document management and workflow automation solutions, which have been around since 1988. DocuWare solution allows businesses to digitize documents, manage and work with business data with international security standards in the cloud, at corporate servers or a combination of both. From there, businesses can simplify your existing workflows quickly, focus on your core business and increase competition in the market.

    With DocuWare, all procedures, papers, documents are digitized, classified and managed. All retrieval, tracking, approval, and reporting are managed synchronously, automating a single process on one platform with the intelligent help of artificial intelligence and machine learning. Currently, the DocuWare solution is trusted by reputable organizations around the world and the highest security according to international standards.




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