If you're still using the traditional paper filing method, the time has come to consider making the switch to an electronic filing system. Maybe your office is old school? Or maybe your boss just needs a little push in the right direction? Whatever the reason for keeping all of that paper around, take a moment to discover some of the benefits of implementing an electronic filing system in your office.
Improved security and compliance
One of the great advantages of an electronic filing system is having the ability to keep files indexed. This means that each document entered into the system is categorized and registered according to specific properties (that your business can define). For example, an HR department may categorize each document by which employee it corresponds to, along with the type of document it is (I-9, W-2, Performance Review, etc) and maybe an expiration date for when that document needs to be renewed or updated. In this way, you are given full control over which employees are able to access specific information. Maybe managers can only access things like attendance records and performance reviews, but your HR director has much broader access permissions.
Whatever business rules may apply in your department and specific situation, an electronic filing system makes it easy to implement those SOP's directly into the system. Taking it a step further, most electronic filing systems include additional security features that automate compliance. For example, an audit trail is a feature that runs in the background, tracking every action that a user takes within the system, as well as every action performed by the system. This is an important compliance feature for many industries and departments. Password protection, version control and secure file sharing are also features built in to many electronic filing systems that help you comply with regulations automatically.
Instant file retrieval
The beauty of an electronic filing system is that, since your documents are indexed, file retrieval becomes instantaneous. If you want to pull up the entire file folder for a specific client or employee, don't go rummaging through your filing cabinet; simply begin typing their name into the system. Instantly, you will have their file at your fingertips. What makes this even more powerful is the ability to run a cross-reference search. For example, maybe you want to pull up all performance reviews for all employees since 1/1/2012. Simply leave the employee name field blank, select "performance review" as your document type and limit the date range. You can immediately see how powerful this kind of cross reference search can be for on-the-fly reports, audits, etc.
If you're using a paper filing system, what happens if your office is damaged? You must be very careful to keep backups of all of your files in a separate location - just in case. A disaster, fire, flood or even poor plumbing can result in the loss of your business critical documentation. Electronic systems help keep your files safe in the event of a disaster by using automatic backups. At the end of each day, every document in your system can be automatically synced to a backup drive that resides in a different physical location (maybe one of your satellite offices or a professional data center). This ensures that in the event of a disaster, you can be confident your files are safe.
Eliminate paper, save money
By switching to an electronic filing system you will significantly reduce your office's paper production. This a good thing for the environment, but also a great thing for your budget. Taking your traditionally paper-based processes to the digital world means reduced lag time, better productivity and ultimately, lower costs for the company. There is no longer a need for paper, ink, filing cabinets, over-nighting time-sensitive documents, etc. All of your document management can be done directly from your electronic filing system. And, with the integration of electronic signatures and online forms, you can truly go paperless with very little effort.
Above are just some of the incredible benefits that an electronic filing system can bring to your organization. To learn more about taking your business paperless, contact us at DynaFile today. We've been helping companies improve document management, reduce paper and increase efficiency for 15 years. Give us a call today for a free demo!