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Physical and Digital Records: Co-mingling works

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The paperless office is a goal for many Australian businesses who want to streamline efficiencies, reduce environmental impact involved in creating paper, and hopefully gain some cost savings along the way. However, while Australian businesses are certainly becoming less reliant on physical documents, the coming of the ‘paperless office age’ has certainly not been achieved by most.

A 2016 survey into Australian customer preferences of print and digital found some results which demonstrate that it’s not just business processes that need to change to achieve a paperless office, but consumer preference. Overall, the findings of the survey concluded that “consumers prefer to read from paper than from screens, appreciating the tactile nature of paper.”

The report also found that “Whilst acceptance of digital media is stronger amongst younger ages, a preference for print on paper still exists for all ages.”

So now it isn’t so much the paperless office that is the goal, it’s the hybrid print less and digital model that is the realistic goal.

Most companies are making efforts across all business units to digitise records as much as possible and move them into commonly accessible content repositories, but they’ve also had to make peace with the fact that paper isn’t likely to go away for years, decades or maybe not ever.

For most businesses, paper trails and records need to be created and kept should anything happen, which may require them to be found. In some cases, only the physical document will be sufficient.

Digital conversion and storage is the physical act of scanning every document in your archives and then saving them to a private server for quick and easy access. Aside from a more efficient and timely manner in which to access stored documents and information, digital conversion and storage also enables companies to set security access for the more important information. Various levels of access can be created for digital documents, ensuring confidential documents are not accessed by those who shouldn’t have access, or fall in to the wrong hands.

Compu-Stor customers have access to our easy-to-use, instant and real time online records management system, CIMS.

CIMS links electronic documents directly to the corresponding record information, enabling customers to log on and search for a file, and then instantly download it. This unique ability allows our customers to use one system to manage both their physical and electronic records without having to invest in any new hardware, software or IT personnel.

If we have technology to turn the physical into digital, why do we still have physical documents?

Most businesses, especially for accounting purposes, need to keep their paperwork for approximately 7 years. Also, if they conduct business internationally, overseas governments may only accept physical documents as part of their processes. The other necessity for keeping physical documents is as a back-up.

Compu-Stor has 30 years’ experience in providing information management solutions to businesses. From document imaging to storage and destruction, we are able to help tailor solutions for your specific needs. If you would like to start the discussion on how we can best help you to manage your information, please feel free to contact us on 1300 559 778 or e-mail us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

References

http://www.keepmeposted.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/TwoSidesConsumerSurvey.pdf

http://searchcontentmanagement.techtarget.com/feature/Physical-records-management-here-to-stay-along-with-digital-records