Enterprise Document Scanning: Navigate the Now and Build the Future

In today's digital landscape, paper documents are miniature anvils that weigh down your business, eat away at profits, and create productivity frictions that prevent you from doing your very best business.

If we cut to the chase:

  • 7.5% of paper documents get lost.
  • Each file cabinet costs $25,000 to fill and $2,000 per year to maintain.
  • The cost of using paper is roughly 30 times the cost of paper itself.
  • Employees spend 2.5 hours a day searching for information trapped in filing cabinets, buried in drawers, and strewn across desks.
  • It takes a professional 18 minutes to locate a single paper document.

The list goes on... and on... and on. Here's the takeaway: paper costs you money, productivity, and fluidity. Most of us have paper documents sitting on the back burner. And, hopefully, that back burner isn't still warm, because a study by Cooper & Lybrand estimates that 70% of companies that exist today would go out of business if they suffered a catastrophic loss of paper records.

We all know that embracing a paperless ecosystem breeds speed, agility, and cost-savings. But how can you actually embrace paperless? What about all of those old documents that account for years of hard work and R&D? You can't afford to lose your existing paper stack. Simultaneously, how can you digitize paper documents that are incoming? There are many lines-of-business where complete digitization seems unfeasible. So, how do you transform all of those paper documents into digital files for seamless integration into your business tech ecosystem? And how do you enable digitization in an ecosystem that still requires physical paper?

The answer is simple: enterprise document scanning.

Understanding Enterprise Document Scanning

Enterprise document scanning is a white-glove service that provides end-to-end digitization of your paper documents. It's important to understand that enterprise document scanning has multiple use cases. You can ship all of your boxes of existing documents for digitization into modern systems, or you can scan incoming documents and send those to your enterprise document scanning vendor for digitization.

We've heard enterprise document scanning defined in hundreds of ways: Some claim it's the first step towards digital transformation. Others claim that it's a complementary solution for EMS. While both of those certainly ring true, the truth is, enterprise document scanning is an independent service. It's a full suite of services that turn your physical, paper documents into secure, fluid, and dynamic digital archives.

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You can use enterprise document scanning to supplement an enterprise content management solution; that's undoubtedly true. But you can also use enterprise document scanning independently of any existing systems or processes. For example, you may be a lender that intakes a massive number of paper mortgage applications. You want to digitize these applications and use those digital files in your AI solution that determines creditworthiness. Traditionally, this involves hiring employees to manually key in all of this rich data. But, given that this manual system is tedious, mistake-prone, and costly, you decide to use an enterprise document scanning service to cut costs and improve accuracy. Suddenly, overnight, all of those tedious paper documents undergo a touchless digitization process.

Sure! Many businesses go paperless and push their customers and clients into digital interactions. But, the cold hard truth is: we're not all digitally transforming overnight. Most of us are stuck between the two realities. The allure and promises of the digital future are clashing with our existing business models, familiar customer base, and still-lingering paper necessity. For businesses that are stuck in this collision of forces (which most are), enterprise document scanning presents itself as a unique opportunity — an opportunity to converge these realities.

Helping You Converge Two Worlds

Imagine a world where paper documents instantly transform into rich digital data. Imagine a system that still allows for digitization without forcing you to go all-in on digital transformation. Enterprise document management gives you the power to make data-driven decisions, digitize and secure critical documents, and outsource your mundane, repetitive, and manual processes.

More importantly, enterprise document scanning enables "paperless light." Keith Kmetz, Vice President at IDC, says that "paperless light" is how many businesses operate today. Internal processes are largely digitized, but external processes still rely on paper — which is then digitized and fed back into the system. As much as we love the idealistic "paperless digitization" mantras put forward by major research organizations like Gartner and McKinsey, we understand that most businesses can't accomplish this — at least, not overnight.

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The siren calls of digitization often clash with modern consumer preferences. The majority of consumers still prefer paper receipts and paper bills. And, most of us still prefer to read on paper vs. computer screens. So, the simple truth is: a large chunk of consumers still prefer paper applications, paper transactions, and paper-based business interactions.

The future is digital. However, enterprise document scanning is the now. It helps you bridge the gaps between your paper needs and your digital future. And it does so without draining your employees' time, attention, and energy.

A Step Toward the Future of Work

Most organizations leverage enterprise document scanning as their first step in the digitization journey. Eventually, most businesses transition to ECM systems and leverage enterprise document scanning for consumer-facing paper processes. Enterprise document scanning is a perfect partner for ECM systems — allowing you to outsource your data entry needs.

Investing in an enterprise document scanning solution isn't just a baby step toward digital transformation; it's one piece of the puzzle. And yes, that piece can stand alone. Many businesses leverage enterprise document scanning with no ambitions for digital transformation. But most want that coveted digitization. Enterprise document scanning is a baseline need for digital transformation.

Gartner's "Three Starting Points for Digitization" recommends that businesses follow a three-step process of digitization:

  • Digitizing historical documents
  • Digitizing incoming paper documents
  • Going completely paperless

Enterprise document scanning is a necessity for the first two points in that roadmap.

Modernize, Digitize, and Materialize Your Digital Ecosystem With DRS

It's not hard to justify investing in an enterprise document scanning solution. It cuts storage costs, reduces employee burdens, frees up labor, and secures your precious historical and incoming data. But, when we step back and pull the curtain off of digitization, enterprise document scanning represents something more profound. It's the gateway to digitization, and it's the stalwart that allows you to blend paper and digital in your business ecosystem.

With DRS's Enterprise Document Scanning service, you can digitize all of your paper documents in one hassle-free environment. You can either ship paper documents to our warehouse or scan them and send them directly to us. From there, we use Optical Character Recognition to accurately digitize those documents and migrate them to a secure Cloud ecosystem.

Are you ready to unlock the raw power of paper? Let's take those paper documents and transform them into rich data for business intelligence, customer personalization, and deep analytics. Contact us to learn how to build a bridge to the future.