Think about how work gets done in your company for a moment. Regardless of the process, there's probably a document (paper or digital) involved.
And while paper use in business is declining somewhat, I'm going to guess a large portion (if not all) of those documents are paper – so you're physically moving documents from person to person.
Printing (and copying) documents is the third-largest expense for businesses. Not only is it costly, printing hurts IT productivity. Estimates vary, but 40-60% of IT help desk calls are print-related. These calls take these valuable professionals away from what they're good at as they attempt to resolve user issues they mostly aren't equipped to resolve.
It doesn't have to be that way.
Here are seven work hacks that can improve your document workflow.
Automate Simple Workflows
Most examples of workflow automation include accounts payable. These repetitive tasks of filing invoices and processing claims involve the same documents and same people. It's a low-hanging fruit for digitization. You can use your copiers to launch a digital workflow to automate this process.
And did you know you can route files to the right folders too? You can set up an app on your digital copier to route documents to the correct folders and document repositories. This will save them from scanning a document, emailing it to themselves or scanning to a general folder, and then manually place the document in the correct folder. Software can automate that busy work.
Read more about this:
- Never Miss an Invoice: Making Accounts Payable (Relatively) Painless
- Your Copier Can Kick-Start Your Digital Transformation
Scan to the Cloud to Make Sharing Easier
Emailing large files around for comments or updates is a tedious pain. Most copiers can scan directly to the cloud – Dropbox, Google Drive, and Microsoft Office 365 are a few common options. When users need to print, they can also access documents in the cloud directly from the copier console. Reduce the number of steps users have to take to share documents – or print them when needed – saves valuable time.
Many copiers allow issues to be fixed remotely. Of course, not everything can be addressed this way. However, instead of waiting on a service technician to drive to your office (even as fast as our service is!) or your IT staff to walk over to the offending equipment; remote troubleshooting allows a fix to be found even faster. Plus, even if an issue can't be resolved and an in-person fix is required, the fix will be done more quickly because the problem will be known. This means less equipment downtime.
Proactive Supply Delivery
Running out of ink/toner is annoying. Set up your printers and copiers to automatically alert you when they're running low on toner. Order only what you need, when you need it and avoid entire closets full of wasted spending on supplies. If you choose managed print services as your print fleet solution, we'll do this for you automatically too.
Limit Who Prints in Color
Color printing is multiple times more expensive than black and white. It's pennies per copy different, true. But thousands of pennies add up to real money over time! Using print rules, you can restrict access to color printing based on individual or department (like the marketing department who actually NEED color documents). Paying for employees to print color vacation photos or personal Christmas letters isn't a good use of a company's printing budget.
Default to Two-Sided Printing
One of the quickest ways to cut paper use in half is to use print rules to default to duplex printing.
Implement Pull Printing
Unsecured printing causes data loss – up to 90% of companies have experienced a data breach because of unsecured printing.* Pull printing ensures that documents aren't left in the printer trays in your office. It also cuts down on waste, as roughly half of printed pages are thrown away and 20% of documents aren't even picked up. For more on this, read Better Document Security AND Convenience For You With Pull Printing.
With these seven easy document workflow and productivity hacks, you'll save your business money, save users and IT time, improve security, and be more productive.
What are you waiting for? Get started!
*This stat is from An Expert Guide to Securing Sensitive Data: 34 Experts Reveal the Biggest Mistakes Companies Make With Data Security. It's full of good tips, including the need to include everyone in a security strategy rather than only relying on technology (many data breaches happen because of human error).