As a small business owner, you probably know that staying on top of trends and innovations is essential to survival. Being flexible and adaptable in the face of continually emerging disruptive technologies is a crucial asset of small businesses that allows them to retain a competitive edge against large-scale operations.
However, it’s still necessary to evaluate new technologies as they apply to your situation, and not make decisions blindly. One specific example would be data management systems (DMS). These are software solutions that transport your relevant data into digital records and integrated systems for easier organization and access. But when does it make sense for your business to migrate? Here are the key factors to consider.
Storage and material use
At the outset, your business operations could be run easily out of a small office or even shared working space. But important paper documents tend to pile up over time. Invoices, receipts, employee files, and client information sheets all start filling out your filing cabinets and storage bins. With commercial space at a premium, are you getting the most out of your office lease when storage is occupying a considerable portion of it?
Even if you resort to keeping these files at home, it’s an undesirable inconvenience – and may not be the most secure storage option. On top of that, paper waste is another factor. Every business can play its part in helping the environment by minimizing the use of paper and ink on printed materials.
If the material and storage considerations are becoming a burden on your operations, consult with a bespoke developer like Illumisoft. Their experts can tailor-fit the solution to your initial needs as you start on your journey to becoming a paperless business.
Backup and security
Any form of storage will always carry some risk to your important documents. Physical storage hazards include fire and water damage. In contrast, you’re probably aware that digital files can become corrupted or risk unauthorized access in the event of a cybersecurity breach, for example.
One thing that often gets overlooked when it comes to document security is human error and negligence. Up to 95% of breaches in cybersecurity are ultimately caused by human error. For the same reasons, physical storage is just as vulnerable; employees can leave file cabinets open while visitors or other unauthorized persons are around. Keys can get lost, documents taken home, and misplaced or never returned. Coffee gets spilled, and so on.
The takeaway here is that with human error always a factor, digital migration can make your important data more secure by limiting access to people who are trained to be careful and maintaining cloud-based backups for disaster recovery.
Access and collaboration
If your business involves a lot of collaboration, and maybe allows some employees to telecommute or work remotely, then you’re already familiar with the advantages of digital file-sharing. DMS takes that to the next level by supporting a wider variety of files, allowing you to set rules for restricted access, and offering search filters and other methods for organizing and archiving your records. Your team will be able to collaborate on more tasks with greater efficiency.
When you decide to adopt DMS, consider the needs of your business for better storage, security, and collaboration. If the immediate situation calls for it, then you should make a move and start enjoying the advantages of integration.