Planning an office or business move is never easy. The sheer volume of the items you have to move is enough to overwhelm even the most organized move manager. One of the largest challenges is organizing all of your documents ensuring they arrive intact, in order and protected from prying eyes. The more confidential information you have, the more important it becomes to ensure you are taking the appropriate steps to protect your information. However, whether you are a medical office, law firm or office supply business, reducing the number of paper files you need to move will make the process a lot easier.
One of the easiest ways to transport your paper files is to scan all your documents before you move. You then have everything you need in electronic form allowing you to store, save, access and add to your files in a far more sophisticated and organized way. Here’s why you should consider document-scanning services before your move date.
Save Money with a Digital Document Management System
A digital document management system allows you to make the transition to a paperless office. This is not only good for the environment, but also allows you to save money in a number of ways including:
- Reducing the amount of office space required for document storage
- Reducing the amount of time required to collect, sort, file and retrieve paper files
- Reducing the risk of lost or damaged paper files containing vital business data
When you digitize paper documents, you don’t lose information, but instead, have a more efficient data system that will increase the productivity of your business.
Sort and Archive Based on Need/Compliance
If you decide to use your move as the perfect opportunity to digitize your paper documents, you can sort, and archive documents based on need and/or compliance requirements. By doing so you reduce the amount of unnecessary archived documents and information, streamlining your document archives and ensuring critical documentation is safe.
Although this might seem like too large a job to tackle prior to moving, imagine the time it will save at the other end when you are settling into your new office. All of your documents from schematics to client information and orders to billing will be scanned, organized and saved. You can assess your files, rid yourself of out of date papers and reduce the number of files and space needed to store the information you no longer need. Instead, once files are sorted your important documents are scanned and stored and then shredded. You don’t have to physically move them or worry about the information getting into the wrong hands.
If you choose to move your paper files and documents, you are looking at some considerable downtime when those files will not be accessible. It will take time for staff to sort and refile all of that paperwork. If you choose to scan documents prior to the move, the digital documents and files will be ready the moment they are scanned. This reduces downtime so your move is not as disruptive to your business. Using a Cloud-based digital document management system keeps everything accessible even before your desks and computers are set up. Staff with authorization can use their phones to access the files they need so customer service is never interrupted.
Information Sharing is Improved Pre and Post Move
Things get even more complicated during a move if vendors and clients also require access to project files. As mentioned above, when you scan your documents, everything becomes available the moment it is saved. This helps improve document sharing whether it is between branches, vendors, or clients both pre and post-move.
Optimize Your New Office Space
If you plan your document scanning process before you even begin the search for your new office space, you can actually select a more suitable office. You can assess the space you will be saving for file storage and take advantage of the space reduction on your new floor plan. The space you choose can either be smaller, to save you money on rent, or you can allot more space to important needs such as an impressive meeting room for clients, a more comfortable lunchroom for staff or a more spacious workspace for your team.
Document Scanning Your Way
You can choose the document scanning process that suits your needs. During a move, your office can become very messy and confusing. You can either arrange to have the documents scanned and shredded at your current location, or pack and ship them to a conversion center for your document scanning project. Either way, your documents will be converted securely including standard paper files, large format drawings, microfilm, photographs, microfiche or mixed digital media.
Since one of the main reasons you are using document-scanning services is to avoid packing, transporting and unpacking your files, the mobile service might be your best option. Staff can sort the documents to be scanned and shredded and those that just need to be shredded. This will reduce the amount of effort required to pack and ship them to a facility while making more space for all the other boxes being packed.
Paper to Digital Files
Once scanned, you can choose the easiest way for you to store and search your data. Of course, cloud-based storage is always the best way, but not all companies will choose this method. Using a technology called OCR (Optical Character Recognition) readable text is extracted from static images allowing you to index your files. You can then choose to store them in one of the following formats:
- DRS cloud storage for 24/7 online access based on authorized users
- Integration with your existing ECM and document management system
- Cloud storage of your choice
- CD/DVD/M-Disc with indexing and a powerful record management tool
- CD/DVD/M-Disc without indexing (static files on a CD)
- CD/DVD/M-Disc with indexing (readable files with search capabilities)
You then use software such as Mercury to manage your information, whether it is structured or unstructured data or stored in different file share or applications. The software allows you to analyze your data for the purposes of migration or deletion, classify information to align with compliance requirements and even track who is accessing and using data.
Planning a document-scanning project prior to your move date makes good business sense. You will kick off your transformation to a digital office and be set to resume document searches before your computers are even plugged in.