10 Records management facts every small business should know

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Small business records management can be overwhelming, especially when most of your operations are document-intensive.

January 10, 20247 mins
Records management

For some businesses, document storage is as simple as a paper filing system, while disposal involves shredding. You, however, need to note that as your business grows, so does the amount of paperwork that you have to handle. This is why document management systems are taking a front seat in the small business arena. Here’s a list of 10 small business document and records management facts that you should be aware of.

1. Digitizing documents saves time & money

One document management statistic that stands out is that on average, a document is photocopied 19 times. This may seem like such a negligent thing, but when the cumulative impact is measured, you'll be surprised. Digital scanning, on the other hand, is very affordable and allows you to screen multiple documents within a short time.

You can either choose to scan documents in-house, but it would be easier to outsource if your business is records-intensive. This will leave your employees with more time to focus on their work. It also eliminates long-term costs such as buying a scanner.

2. Around 45% of printed papers end up in the garbage daily

The amount of printed paper that ends up in the trash is shocking. It is close to half of all the records you print every day! 2 of the main reasons employees throw away documents include printing mistakes and erroneous records, elements that can easily be solved by double-checking work and setting the correct printing settings.

With document management software, all the records are virtual, and before you print actual copies, you can quickly go through the content to ensure that they are print-ready.

3. Physical document storage is highly convenient and affordable

Outsourcing your physical document storage is both convenient and very cost effective. Your document storage provider will often provide you with the storage boxes, pick up your files, and transport them to their own storage facility. This is all done by professionals who are expertly trained in document handling and security. Once your documents are stored properly, you will be able to access the files both digitally and physically at your convenience. This will save you the headache of trying to locate the files yourself. Not only is physical document storage convenient it is also very cost effective. Most service cost less than a cup of coffee a day.

4. Employees spend an average of $120 worth of time daily looking for documents

Traditional record filing methods are not only expensive but also ineffective, and misfiled documents are relatively common in organizations that rely heavily on them. Think of a scenario where a document was filed among the accounting documents while it should have been in the finance section. How long do you think it would take your employees to find it?

Based on the above statistic, if a worker spent $120 of their payable hours searching for information every day, this would translate to a whopping $31,200 annually. That's assuming that they work 260 days every year.

5. More than 80% of companies spend billions on paper

It’s hard to believe that even now that digital technology is revolutionizing enterprises, some small businesses are still highly reliant on paper. Studies reveal that 33% of municipal waste and 25% of landfill waste is disposed of paper. This means that despite spending a significant amount on printing paper, most of it ends up in the garbage.

You can quickly solve this by investing in document management software that ensures all the critical information is well protected.

6. Professionals append half their time looking for information

Employees can spend around 50% of their work hours looking for documents and upto 15% going through them. Think of a situation where you need records that were filed 3 years ago. No matter how good your filing system is, sorting through the documents manually can take a long time.

Managing your documents digitally on one platform makes it easy to retrieve records based on the time when they were stored.

7. Over 7.5% of all records get lost

The thing about paper records is that they can easily get lost. An employee could misfile them; they could be accidentally shredded or even mistakenly thrown in the trash. When this happens, the chances of retrieving them is minimal.

With a record management system, all your documents will be secure and backed up, making retrieval easy.

8. Sending documents via courier costs between $8 and $15

Businesses that are heavily reliant on traditional filing systems also depend on couriers to deliver their documents. This, however, comes with risks such as lost records or late deliveries. These delivery services are also relatively expensive and are unsafe when it comes to highly sensitive documents.

9. More than 90% of employees are now collaborating via email

Emails have gained popularity over the past few years not only because they are cost-efficient but also due to their convenience. You can easily send one document to multiple departments with the push of a button. Emails are also relatively secure, guarantee that the document will get to the intended recipients, and keep records of the initial messages and the replies.

10. Electronic signatures are up to $20 cheaper for every document

Signing documents has never been easier, thanks to e-signatures. They are safe and allow you to authenticate important documents without compromising the security of sensitive information. They also boost efficiency and are more cost-effective.

It’s time to embrace small business document management systems

As a small business, you need to implement efficient ways of storing your records, and traditional document management solutions no longer cut it. Now more than ever it is important to find a partner that can store both your physical and electronics documents. Check out how we can help optimize your small business records management.