By Sudhashan Naidoo, MD Nashua Pietermaritzburg
Most companies double the number of documents they produce every two years. So, if your business is starting to buckle under the weight of endless paperwork and your employees are up to their eyeballs in filing (and threatening the printers with physical harm), it’s probably high-time you relooked your document management systems.
Poorly functioning printers and archaic document systems can become a black hole for employee time and efficiency – and, of course, company finances. This is where managed document services (MDS) come into play.
MDS is an approach that analyses and transforms document processes in a business – right from data capturing and archiving to workflows, security and environmental impact. It’s a process rather than an out-of-the-box solution. As printing and copying costs continue to escalate, South African businesses are increasingly recognising the importance of keeping these costs under control and are turning to MDS solutions to do this.
In fact, research by Nashua has shown that MDS can reduce output costs by more than 30% by providing greater cost control, reducing unnecessary printing and providing more streamlined workflow processes. This is significant considering that printing accounts for as much as 10% of the average annual spend in a business.
So what does MDS do? When working with the right solution provider, it should involve five distinct stages:
Consultants look at your company’s current operating costs, workflow processes and document life cycles. By thoroughly auditing business operations, all current and potential bottlenecks and issues can be identified – paving the way for new solutions.
2. Custom design
During this stage, all information collected in the discovery stage is analysed in order to build a custom solution unique to your business. The custom MDS aims to streamline workflow and identify hardware, software, safety and storage solutions that will address your business’ current needs and continue to do so in the future.
Once the new system architecture is agreed to, the process of migrating your business to the new custom system can begin. This involves a gradual, non-disruptive rollout where the most pressing issues are addressed first. It is imperative that your staff receive training during this phase in order to ensure a painless transition.
4. Support and management
The mark of a good service provider is the ongoing support and management services they offer after implementing an MDS solution. This is imperative to ensure that new systems are properly adopted and the desired results are seen by your business.
As technology changes and your company grows and develops, your MDS solution will need to continuously evolve to stay on top of innovation and maintain optimal efficiency in your business. A great MDS solution is one that is scalable and easy to update.
As the new year kicks into full gear, you need to ask if your business can continue to waste time and money on systems that are holding it back. Make 2015 the year you take control of printing costs, streamline your business processes and put an end to employee/printer showdowns.
For more information on MDS visit www.nashua.co.za/managed-document-services.