We no longer have the luxury of inefficiency—of dawdling away our time. Every business’s efforts must be completed intentionally and in concert to maximize collaboration, effectiveness, and resourcefulness. In fact, we can go so far as to say that strategy is nothing without the technology to inform it.
This is because strategy is no longer the most effective way to solve internal operations problems. Therefore, small businesses must rely on technologies like document management software, which offer immediate, scalable, and enduring solutions to problems that would otherwise cripple their efforts to grow. And this all begins with eliminating the paper-based processes that slow us down.
Challenge 1: Going Paperless Without Any Problems: The First Step in Solving the Office Problems of 2017
The term “paperless” is not only a very small part of document management—it’s also the first step to effectively leveraging a document management system. Unlike the document management technologies that facilitate a paperless environment, “paperless” is nothing new.
The term emerged in the 1980s, yet failed to take flight as few technology vendors offered solutions to leverage full scale digitization. Compound this with the fact that human beings are creatures of habit who relied on filing cabinets for over a century, and the rush to go paperless suddenly doesn’t seem so important. Solving the office problems of 2017 requires a more holistic stance and analysis of current issues.
However, once a business understands the impact of a document management system like eFileCabinet’s, returning to the old way of doing things seems ridiculous. The solution to the going paperless problem? Automated document routing.
Solution1: Automated Document Routing and Classification
Solving the office problems of 2017 begins with automation.
Document management experts call this “Zonal OCR,” the OCR part standing for Optical Character Recognition. But this term for the add on is just a fancy way of describing how businesses can go (and stay) paperless without any effort through automated document routing and classification.
Without a document management solution with a Zonal OCR add on, every time you scan a single document, you save the file and give it an arbitrary name, which will likely make it difficult to find on a business’s shared drive, if for you then especially for anyone else who has access to it.
Then you are forced to manually store it with your mouse. And whenever you want to find it again, you must remember where you put it or you’ll be spending minutes searching for it.
Automated document routing and classification, through Zonal OCR, does exactly what it sounds like: It automatedly stores files within eFileCabinet based on text in the file, making it retrievable under any search condition.
Challenge 2: Computer Work is Still Manual Labor without Document Management
Many people think of manual labor as something that happens outside the office, but that isn’t the case. A typical business (which is paper-dependent) will have employees literally waste 20% of their workday storing documents, looking for documents, and sharing them with other employees.
Think going digital alone solves this problem? Think again. Digital hoarding (the storage of information on a desktop, tablet, or mobile phone without any organization), means more mouse clicks, more drag and drops, and more typed characters.
Given that the term manual literally means “done with the hand” and your mouse finger is a part of your hand, you are STILL engaging in more manual labor as a digital hoarder than you could be with a solid document management system.
Solution 2: Predefined Document Naming and Tag-free Metadata
The solution is predefined document naming and tag-free Metadata. This drastically reduces the number of mouse clicks it takes to complete typical document processes, meaning you can spend less time clicking and more time using and developing the skills that pay your bills. This is also true because of tag-free metadata—an essential staple of solving the office problems of 2017.
Metadata means “data about data.” So, for instance, the data you may have about data in a document is the document’s creator, the date it was created, and specific terms that appear frequently in the document.
Although there are metadata object description schemas suggesting specific metadata terms, eFileCabinet’s document management system lets you specify which terms you know will be important to your document search and retrieval once they are stored in our system.
Metadata is a useless feature unless it is tag-free. Why? Because if you forgot what you tagged the document you’re searching for, you won’t be able to find it. This is why M-Files’ metadata-driven architecture cannot hold a candle to eFileCabinet’s.
Challenge 3: Keeping Everything in One Place
If most businesses look at 100% of their documents, the chances that all 100% of these documents are stored in a single place is extremely slim—a reason why solving the office problems of 2017 has become such a pressing matter.
Although this may not seem like it can cause problems, it creates a collaborative knowledge silo in offices where only certain employees know where certain things are located.
Furthermore, having chunks of files stored in multiple places makes them more difficult to find, and the chances you’ll have to interrupt your routine to find something in another location are greater under these conditions. This is a significant drawback in an era where attention is an important and valuable commodity.
Solution 3: A System with Comprehensive Document Functionality
Solving the office problems of 2017 begins with having a system that has comprehensive document management functionality, meaning you can do anything you possibly want with documents inside the system you choose to host your files.
This will mean integration with software you already use, a secure web portal for sharing sensitive information, and recurring 24-hour data backup for colocation and security of the storage itself.
Challenge 4: Accessing Files from Anywhere
Solving the office problems of 2017 requires solving the problems of the customer in 2017, whom has become more demanding than ever. This requires accessibility to documentation (and the complete functionality of a document management system) from wherever there’s an internet connection. Especially if one works in the financial services or insurance industries.
Solution 4: Securely Put Your Office in Your Pocket
Yes, it’s possible. You can do it with eFileCabinet’s top-rated mobile document management app. Although many document management vendors offer their solutions on a mobile app, it’s the desktop functionality retained within the eFileCabinet app that makes it head and shoulders above the rest. In fact, the app itself is proof that solving the office problems of 2017 doesn’t require being shackled to a desk in your office, and that’s a good thing.