Business practices today are facing new challenges due to continued economic pressures and growing security threats to data. In defense, companies wishing to get through these times to the other side must quickly find innovative ways to streamline operations, improve management efficiencies and be fully compliant with relevant regulations. All this on top of running an operationally sound, cashflow-focused, environmentally-sensitive business that creates a product or provides a service that is actually sought out by today’s finicky worldwide consumer base.
A shift to electronic document management systems has presented itself as a clear path towards achieving many of the goals that are mandatory to business survival in our century. In addition, the growing volume of electronic information, greater regulatory constraints and storage issues demand addressing on their own accord as well. As attractive as a move to electronic archiving is to c-level management, the transition brings with it technical, financial, and educational challenges once electronic document management systems are implemented company-wide. A clear transitional plan must be created and followed from the onset of electronic archiving clear through to the point where staff members have adjusted to the changes in workflow that will be unavoidable.
Electronic archiving may come across to staff members as a threat to the basic way that business works. Senior staff members may resist the changes that a new electronic document management system will create in their tidy world of process and procedures. An understanding and a counterattack to the resistance will be needed by those implementing the system and training those who will be utilizing it in any capacity. Traditional paper handling and storage methods will seem archaic and extremely inefficient once a thorough training and integration has been completed. In the meantime, management should expect questions and concerns to be tossed at them regularly regarding every aspect of electronic documents as opposed to paper documents.
Employees will need to be educated on the high-usability that electronic documents inherently have over paper documents. Documents that in the past were inaccessible due to being offsite, lost, or damaged will now be available with a few keystrokes all day, every day. Business trending review, historical data analysis, and job accountability within organizations will be drastically improved, a major point that needs to be conveyed to staff members. Every team member, board member, and even stockholders will feel the benefits that a shift away from traditional paper handling to electronic record management will bring.