A business must always consider the ROI of the technology it uses, and how that technology will affect the bottom line. With today’s demand for instant access to information and efficient end to end business processes, paper is no longer a viable place to store and share information. Fortunately, there is a category of software that helps facilitate information security, storage, sharing, accessibility and document driven process automation. This software has been referred to as:
- Records management systems (RMS)
- Document management systems (DMS)
- Content management systems (CMS)
- Enterprise content management (ECM) systems
While these different systems can offer varying features depending on who you ask, they all share a key benefit: reducing the reliance of paper. This can mean something as simple as scanning documents and storing the scanned images in a secure repository, or as advanced as taking paper completely out of the information collecting, processing, and archiving process.
Here are some interesting ways you can see the ROI of document management systems.
ROI Savings on Hard Costs
Savings on hard costs are often the most compelling ROI as it gives decision makers a tangible value. Some hard costs you can include in your document management ROI analysis include:
- Paper. How many reams of paper does your office purchase per year for printed documents, photocopies, etc…?
- Equipment: List the number of scanners, printers, copiers and fax machines in your office and how much it costs (including toner and cartridges) to service and maintain them.
- Storage space: How much of your office’s square footage is devoted to just filing cabinets, paper reams and spare cartridges?
- Record keeping space. Does your office rent out offsite storage space to keep old paper records? What are the transportation costs to retrieve old records?
- Mail and shipping. If your information lives on paper, you’ll need to deliver documents to and from clients, customers, partners and other offices.
Hard Employee Costs
Paper-reliant offices ultimately rely on their employees to process and move paper-based information. An employee must spend time:
- Making paper copies
- Moving data on paper to computer (data entry)
- Searching and retrieving stored files
- Finding missing documents
- Recreating or replacing lost documents
According to an IDC study, employees can spend 3.5 hours per week searching and not finding documents. On average, every misfiled document costs $125 and a lost document costs the organization $700.
ROI Savings on Soft Costs
Intangible savings may not have a set monetary value, but you can’t deny their importance. Here are some soft ROI factors of a document management investment:
- Process information more quickly and accurately with automation
- Access information securely 24/7 from anywhere and on any device
- Devote employee time to mission-critical goals instead of administrative tasks
- Respond more quickly to client or customer inquiries
- Comply with your industry’s regulatory body without fail
- Increase internal communication clarity
- Increase data integrity and security
- Reduce or eliminate human error when capturing or processing information
Businesses also need to plan for continuity. Disruptions can be costly and are opportunities for clients and customers to go to a competitor. Document management software can help organizations maintain uninterrupted business operations during:
- Natural disasters that would prevent employees from accessing information kept onsite
- Server downtime
- Change of personnel
- Audits and/or litigation
Need Help Going Paperless?
At West X Business Solutions, we have a dedicated team of digital business consultants who are skilled in helping organizations calculate the ROI of document management systems based on their business operations.
Call us today (604.689.5554) to learn more about making your business paperless.