Sure, the stuff is feature rich, it allows you to file and retrieve paper and electronic documents anywhere in the world. It also provides compliance and audit trail of all documents in the repository, as well as a great Disaster Recovery Measure; but what advantages does it have over paper, folders and filing cabinets?
Here are the 5 Reasons why you should ignore Document Management Solutions and Keep your Filing Cabinets:
- Manually Filing Paper Documents in Cabinets is more efficient. “That’s the way we have always done it” – Well we all know change is bad. Things have not changed very much at all in the last 110 years, as far as the office goes. I find it hard to believe that anything could be more efficient than manually filing every document of any importance in a series of folders, in a bank of cabinets, located somewhere I am often not. This is so much better than capturing paper docs from a scanner, MFP or copier and indexing them effortlessly with keywords on the doc itself. ex: Invoice #, Vendor Name, Date.
- Printing .PDF Documents and Manually Filing in Cabinets is more efficient and environmentally friendly. “Whatever happened to the good old days?” – This new trend where suppliers send me shipping notices and Invoices via email is almost as annoying as when Customers send me Purchase Orders the same way. I really prefer to marvel at the efficiency of the good ole US Postal Service; but I get it. It’s the whole Carbon Footprint thing, and I’m on board. Though it is obviously more efficient and environmentally supportive to print these documents on paper and file them into cabinets instead of just “printing” them to the document repository (database) and then complete with indexing. I just don’t know what I would do if I couldn’t staple the Purchase Order, Pack Slip, Invoice and Check stub together and file them away, never to be looked at again. Or at least I hope I never need these documents again.
- Manually Retrieving Paper Documents from Cabinets. “It’s a thing of beauty” – I hear all this hubbub about having access to my secure, important documents from anywhere in the world using Document Management Software and the Web. I don’t get it. If I am out of town, or the country for that matter and need information from any document I can just call my office and ask someone to find the document I am looking for and fax it to a nearby Kinko’s or something. My colleagues don’t mind the job of looking for paper docs that are often sitting on someone’s desk or shredded. And hey, who needs important documents after hours anyway, I will just make sure I need them during office hours.
- Filing Cabinets are Cheap and Impervious to disaster. “So are Bankers Boxes and Iron Mountain” – These reasons to keep my files on paper are limitless. Filing Cabinets don’t take up too much space and my rent is practically going down every year. Cabinets seem so strong, how could a fire, flood or theft possibly occur, has it ever? Besides I can just send the really important documents in cardboard banker’s boxes to Iron Mountain, they are practically a Non-Profit Organization. Their rates for deposit, storage, retrieval and destruction of my documents are practically free. The security of having safe, redundantly backed-up files means very little to businesses in today’s brick and mortar world.
- Paper Documents are Never Stolen, Lost, Misplaced or Altered. “And certainly never looked at by the wrong eyes” – I heard somewhere that the reason Compliance Standards and Agencies were created is because of the inefficiency of paper documents and how we store, secure, retrieve and work with them. I find this hard to believe in today’s perfect world where identity theft, insurance fraud and almost any other type of crime is barely existent.
Sure, Document Management Solutions are becoming very popular because of the Return on Investment (ROI), Operational Efficiencies and Environmental Sustainability. On the other hand, what would we do with all of those empty file cabinets? Do you have any ideas?