Entrusting records and information management, along with scanning, to a trusted partner will make more efficient use of your firm’s time and resources—and it will trim your budget, too.
DID YOU KNOW? In a survey by OpenText and the Government Business Council, 90% of business managers said their companies still rely on paper documents. Whatever happened to that “paperless office” idea?
FAST FACT: When you outsource scanning work, look for a provider that can provide 99.9% uptime, meet your deadlines and provide quick turnaround, counsels AIIM, the global community of information professionals.
Here’s the thing: Sometimes to gain control in records management you need to give up control.
“Give up control?” you say. “That’s nuts! We’ve got requests for records coming in, an overflowing records room, and scanning projects that will keep us busy for years. If we let go, how will any of this get done?”
Well, start by believing in the Zen of office management. Surrender those records management chores to a trusted offsite records storage provider. Its team can do a better job organizing and accessing information, and when you pick the right team, it won’t break your budget, either. Leave all that scanning to a trusted partner, too. When you free up your staff’s already busy days in this way, they can concentrate on more fulfilling core-business projects.
Can you feel the calm within you already?
Searching for Your RIM Zen Master
So which firm can best handle your outsourced records management tasks? Start by asking the candidates these questions:
- Can we access our data anytime, around the clock? It’s unlikely that you’re going to have a pressing need to track down the Johnson contract at 3 a.m., but don’t you want to know that you could if you needed to? And if your business is global, someone somewhere could need it during their working hours.
- Do you handle document destruction in adherence to an established retention schedule? Documents can mount up quickly, as any organization with a bulging records room knows all too well. Make sure to ask whether the vendor’s document storage solutions include secure IT asset destruction, media destruction and secure shredding.
- How much will it cost—including any potential extras? Gauge costs against your own time and your staff’s hours spent organizing and hunting down records. What could you accomplish with that time if you didn’t have to worry about file management?
- How safe will our records be? Understanding the security measures your provider has in place for vital records management will make you feel better about going with them. Understand how records are stored and saved, and look for any gaps in the security used during transit.
And Then There’s Your Scanning Guru
Document scanning is a chore you probably wouldn’t mind handing off to someone else either, right? But before you make that transition, you need to know that it’s a smart move for your budget, and that you’re getting the best value possible with the partner you select. To that end, ask these questions:
- Can you set a guaranteed time frame for the job, including each phase? Can your partner keep projects moving at a speedy pace? Does it guarantee results?
- Are you experienced? Document imaging might seem like a simple job, but the true pros know how to do it quickly while also paying attention to detail and overall quality.
- Can you save us money versus doing it in-house? For example, rather than having an expensive high-volume scanner, training hours and extra staff hours eat up your budget for the year, a trusted partner should be able to complete your document scanning for less, freeing up your team for other work.
Kick your records management and document scanning tasks out the door (in a calm, Zen way, of course). Then see how much nicer your work environment can be when you let someone else get the job done.
Iron Mountain Suggests: Zen and the Art of Records Management
Outsourcing and offsite records storage is only the beginning of your journey, one that turns the anxiety and expense of records management into a sense of calm security. Follow these steps to fully master your documents:
- Make an A-list. Some documents are more important than others. Identify the most crucial documents in your archives and shield them from accidental document destruction.
- Set a policy. Records management should be a company-wide concern. Create a records management policy for your business and share it with your fellow employees. Teach your colleagues which documents are crucial and should be saved.
- Make a termination schedule. Part of a good records management plan is deleting files that are no longer needed. Set a schedule and make sure older documents are securely shredded when the time is right.
Do you have questions about information management? Read additional Knowledge Center Small Business resources, or contact Iron Mountain’s Small Business team. You’ll be connected with a knowledgeable product and services Small Business specialist who can address your specific challenges.
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