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BizReport : Internet : April 24, 2017

Top 5 tips to take business paperless

We are well into the second decade of the 21st century, but many businesses continue to run on 20th century practices - like having hard/paper copies of everything. This, despite the fact that the Association for Information and Image Managed found most (92%) companies are interested is going paperless. Here are 5 tips to take business paperless.

by Kristina Knight

First, information security

"It's kind of odd that so many companies use security as a reason NOT to go paperless. They fear hackers, data leaks, and cyber attacks. While these are legitimate fears, and no system is completely and 100% secure, there are in fact various compelling reasons why digital processes are far safer than paper processes," said Nick Candito, Progressly. "First, with digitized processes, identity governance and access controls ensure only the right people can access certain documents and systems. Second, data security makes it much easier and less expensive to maintain compliance with regulations such as HIPAA and SOX that require companies to take documented measures to maintain data confidentiality and integrity. Third, digitalization allows companies to easily back up crucial information. Digital documents can be protected in ways paper documents can't, such as remotely via the cloud or an off-site hard drive."

Second, accessibility

"Think of how much time is spent searching for a document on your desk or in a binder compared to a computer file? When the right content is accessible at the touch of a button, it takes only seconds to route and share documents to any number of people across multiple departments and systems," said Candito. "This ease of access greatly improves efficiency in a variety of contexts, such as approval workflows, and mobile, tablet or offline access translates into speed and agility. Your competitors are only going to get faster, and the agility that a paperless process gives you is vital to remaining competitive."

Third, adherence

"There's no question that digitization improves collaboration. When everyone can access the essential documents and consistently collect the right information for the right person when it's needed, you're greasing the wheels of your intra-company communication engine. You're also creating a proven record and a way to improve your collaboration processes upon dint of being able to review them," said Candito.

Fourth, real-time visibility

"Using digital instead of paper workflows allows management to monitor your business and key collaborations in real time and with a view into analyzing bottlenecks to improve them and hence improve results. This makes it easier to keep tasks on track and to identify problems and opportunities for improvement," said Candito. "Each assigned task not only contains the business information defined in the process but also presents data about the given business outcome (ie, the audit, incident, approval, on-boarding, etc)."

Fifth, optimized performance

"Ultimately what you're shooting for in going paperless is an improved customer experience and hence an improved bottom line. If you improve collaboration, security, adherence, and visibility, there's no way your customers won't benefit from it. Savings will be passed on to them, and a better understanding of the way you operate will lead to new insights into how to better serve your customers, leading to increased revenue," said Candito.

Tags: paperless business, Progressly, SMB tips, SMB trends

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