Go Green, Become More Effective with Document Management

The recent annual celebrations and educational efforts supporting Earth Day show the fight for a clean environment continues. While you may have a forward-thinking environmental policy, is that enough when you repeatedly print out extensive loan packages and transport them 200 miles to headquarters?

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That’s where document management, or enterprise content management (ECM), software comes in. The most obvious benefit of document management is that it decreases your dependency on paper. But it also offers numerous other benefits, including:

  • Automating document retention
  • Simplifying records management
  • Responding to audit requests and legal concerns without hesitation
  • Safeguarding sensitive customer, member or employee data

There are three key ways document management helps you achieve these goals while lessening your impact on the environment.

1. Reducing paper use        

Deploying document management software dramatically reduces your reliance on paper. You simply scan all incoming paper mail, invoices and other documents. Your document management solution immediately archives the scanned information as digital images – like emails – in an easily accessible central location. Users then file, search, annotate, share and process these documents without ever reverting back to physical paper.

By moving to a more paperless office environment, you eliminate archive rooms, filing cabinets and storage areas. This helps cut costs like heating and cooling those storage rooms. And by reducing your reliance on paper, you take a proactive approach to disaster recovery.

You can also do more with less by using electronic document workflow to automate manual and paper-based processes. Instead of wading through tons of emails, searching through desks or waiting for documents to eventually make their way to you through interoffice mail, workflow automatically routes them to the appropriate people. It also alerts stakeholders that work has moved forward and is ready for the next step, speeding up processes like loan originations.

2. Eliminating printing and photocopying

Printing and photocopying are expensive and environmentally unfriendly processes. By using document management, you cut the amount of printing and photocopying required to run your business. It enables users to view, edit and share documents with colleagues in an entirely digital format. You take care of all the tasks that used to require users to print or photocopy documents in digital form.

No more printer cartridges; no more photocopy repair calls for help.

3. Cutting down on couriers

Not only are couriers costly, they add days to the lending approval process and they aren’t environmentally friendly. Courier and mail services that transport documents and lending packages between branches are an often overlooked environmental impact of paper-based processes. Adopting a truly paperless office cuts the pollution caused when you use courier trucks.

You can make a real difference. When you reduce your use of paper, you increase your speed and accuracy while you cut costs. The planet – and your customers and members – will thank you.

 

Michelle Harbinak Shapiro

Michelle Harbinak Shapiro

Michelle Shapiro brings more than 15 years of experience in the banking industry to her role as Financial Services marketing portfolio manager at Hyland. Her mission is to share best practices and evangelize the power of ECM as a tool for banks, credit unions and lenders to help automate paper-based processes and proactively manage regulations.

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