4 Document Digitization Mistakes That Can Ruin Your Success

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Document digitization is the first and most important step in establishing a digital enterprise.

The digital universe is growing. Digitization has invaded every aspect of our lives and businesses. Physical documents have already been replaced by digital data in practically every aspect and kind of business organization. The way records are kept in an organization is the foundation of any business infrastructure.

Becoming a digital business is no longer an option. If the COVID19 pandemic has taught us anything, it is that we must be exceedingly agile in order to adapt to disruptive occurrences.

Document digitization is the process of converting paper documents into digital format by employing various tools and techniques. It is essential for preserving, managing, storing, and securing digital information for subsequent processing and gaining insights for better-informed business decisions.

Document digitization fundamentally improves the efficiency of your organization’s operations and ensures that procedures run smoothly.

Digitized documents are easy to maintain, store, retrieve, and process. They reduce the costs, time, and effort required to manage physical records.

In this post, we will define document digitalization and explain why it is critical for all enterprises.

document digitisation or file digitization

What is Document Digitization?

Document digitization is the process of converting paper documents into a digital (i.e. computer-readable) format that computer systems may use to automate processes or workflows.

To acquire true insights from your data and information, it must be converted to digital format rather than residing on paper and maintained in a physical file cabinet.

Converting handwritten text to digital format or analog audio recordings to digital format are two examples of document digitization.

Digitizing records is the initial step in your digital transformation journey. It enables us to capture critical information and store it in a single repository for subsequent retrieval and processing. It is also a necessary first step for many AI projects.

Documents that have been digitized are easier to maintain, store, secure, share, and dispose of when necessary.

Manual document digitization is a time-consuming process. It needs the use of humans. It is a method of protecting your most crucial papers, images, and documents.

However, as technology advances, it is now entirely done by automation and the use of computer systems.

Digitizing documents just for the sake of having a digital backup isn’t a realistic advantage. Organizations must extract the critical information from these paper documents and utilize it for retrieval, business decisions, and gaining insights into how they operate.

The Document Digitization Process

Scanning of paper documents, either manually or automatically, is the first step in the digitization process. There are several methods available that can allow you to scan large amounts of documents quickly and without sacrificing quality.

Historically, this process took a long time, especially if you were commencing the document digitization initiative after several years of commercial operations. However, several companies have emerged throughout time to help drive this process swiftly and perfectly.

Solutions for document capture make a digital copy of the necessary paper documents. The generated digital files can then be saved electronically for additional processing and analysis.

Once the digital copy is ready, it must be analyzed and the document processing step completed before we can actually unlock the power of information collected.

Analyzing a document refers to using various approaches to convert an image into text so that it may be searched digitally based on the information contained in that document.

Various approaches are used, including

  • Optical character recognition (OCR)
  • Intelligent character recognition (ICR)
  • Optical mark recognition (OMR) 
  • Optical barcode recognition (OBR) 

It is strongly advised to read the next three articles for in-depth discussion of data capturing and document processing.

What Is Data Capture and Why It Is Important? (theecmconsultant.com)

What is Intelligent Document Processing? The Complete Guide (theecmconsultant.com)

How Document Indexing Is Making Organizations A Better Place (theecmconsultant.com)

Check watch the video below to discover how the UK government is digitising paper records their accomplishments via a clever technique.

How to Avoid Document Digitization Mistakes?

Here are some of the most typical mistakes that businesses make while pursuing digitization, and how they may be avoided with proper planning.

1- Inadequate Employee Preparation

The success of digitization is heavily reliant on how well personnel are trained to collaborate with newly introduced technology.

Before you embark on the digital transformation road, you must guarantee that your personnel are properly taught and prepared to handle it.

This is important to the initiative’s success; whichever tools or technology you use, you must guarantee that your employees can use them.

It is a good option to outsource to another entity with extensive proven digitization experience, which will also assist your knowledge workers gain experience more quickly.

2- Moving Too Fast

The digitization process is more like a marathon than a sprint. To limit the chance of failure, it is critical to devote sufficient time to each phase and to precisely organize your activities.

Begin by launching the program in one of the smaller departments. This will allow you to analyze the output and tools utilized, as well as make modifications if necessary.

3- Failure to Obtain Employee Buy-In

Obviously, top-level support is required before embarking on the digitization path.

The error occurs when buy-in ends at the peak. The project is being pushed ahead by the business executives without the involvement of the rest of the company.

Front-line employees must be on the same page as senior management in order to carry out their vision. At the end of the day, they are the ones who will execute and gain from this program both personally and professionally.

4- Digitization Requires Only Technology

Adoption of technology is simply one aspect of document digitization. To be effective, people, processes, and technology are required.

The use of technology is simply one piece of the issue. It necessitates a shift in mentality on how you handle papers, store them, protect them, and make them available to other colleagues.

Why Document Digitization is Important?

Organizations cannot go digital until their documents are digitized.

You run the danger of slipping behind and jeopardizing your long-term success if you do not have a digital organization.

Digitized documents serve as the foundation for any digital transformation journey a corporation may embark on.

In this competitive environment, you will lose if you do not grasp how your business operates, how to improve, and how to make use of all available information.

digitizing paper documents benefits

11 Benefits of Document Digitization

There are several benefits of digitizing records, here are 11 key benefits of digitizing your documents. #5 is my favorite.

1- Save Storage Space

Did you know that maintaining your documents on paper costs 80% more than keeping them on electronic counterparts?

Paper document storage necessitates the capacity to have storage rooms, maintenance, file cabinets, insurance, fire emergency plans, and so on, which may cost businesses a lot of money.

2- Increase Productivity

Did you also know that 70% of employees in any firm squander an hour every day on average merely accessing information!

The use of digital information and the adoption of a document management system will save many employees time searching for and collaborating on documents, allowing them to focus on more essential activities and projects.

3- Easy Accessibility

No matter where your employees work, whether at home, on a business trip, on vacation, etc., having your digital documents available to them quickly enhances productivity and allows for greater business operations results.

4- Boost Security

Paper documents may easily fall into the wrong hands, increasing the risk of a data breach. Granular security permissions for each employee may be specified using digital documents and effective implementation. This will keep unauthorized people from accessing your digital data.

Furthermore, there are numerous methods to improve your document security processes; for more information, see the page below.

Boost Your DOCUMENT SECURITY With These Tips (theecmconsultant.com)

5- Automate Business Processes

Digitizing your documents is the first step in becoming a more digital enterprise. Following that, internal work procedures are often automated, and information or document approval cycles are routed to the appropriate channels.

From simple operations like leave requests to more complicated ones like engineering collaboration, all of this is impossible without document digitalization!

Digitization vs Digitalization: What’s The Difference? (theecmconsultant.com)

6- Boost Collaboration

Did you know that 55% of employees spend more than an hour replicating the work of others?

This is the result of a poor collaborative process. When you use a system to handle your digital documents, it is simple to collaborate on papers without undoing each other’s work.

7- Data Recovery

Digital information are often followed by backup schedules that allow for the recovery of documents in the event of an emergency. This simply refers to restoring documents from earlier backups, which will bring you back to work quickly.

8- Integration With Other Systems

Other business line applications are often used by enterprises for a variety of objectives. With digital documents available in a centralized location, these documents might be shared by other applications for further processing and analysis.

9- Environmentally Friendly

Consider how many trees are taken down each year to produce papers! That alone is a warning sign for our ecology.

Minimizing, if not completely removing, our reliance on paper documents will benefit our environment’s long-term viability.

10- Enhance Compliance

Depending on their business, practically all significant corporations are required to follow certain rules and regulations.

Personal information should be preserved for a set period of time, and financial reports should also be monitored. Documents should not be discarded until they are completely safe.

When documents are digitized, automated processes for document destruction or archival can be developed.

11- More Informed Business Decisions

Documents must be digitized, evaluated, and processed before they can be used to their full potential.

Gaining insights into how your clients perceive a certain product quality or how your personnel perform is critical to your future success.

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