Here's why scan-to-email can hurt your business

Here’s why scan-to-email can hurt your business
An increasing number of organizations are digitizing their business processes to improve productivity, reduce costs and decrease the risk of human error. So far, so good. But problems crop up because many of those organizations are going about this the wrong way – namely by scanning to email by having a person scan a document sent to their personal email inbox, then manually delivering it to the final destination. This is, to put it simply, a very poorly thought-out business process. Replacing it should be a key part of any organization’s business strategy.


Among the reasons scan-to-email can be damaging to business:


It’s not secure, and it’s not compliant: A scanned document sent by email allows sensitive and confidential information to be easily forwarded to anyone outside the company or to the wrong recipients internally. In industries that must adhere to strict compliance regulations, such as HIPAA, this potential for human error or intentional malicious behavior can have serious consequences.


There’s no consistent document format, quality or file-naming system: The scan or multifunction printer devices in use today can be complicated, with equally complex menu systems. Each individual user is required to make a variety of individual decisions involving output file type, scan quality settings and document naming convention. All of this confusion results in inconsistencies, meaning digital content can be hard to retrieve, file and manage.


There are limits to the files that are created: Traditional scan-to-email usually only creates an image file in the read-only PDF format. That means the text in the new file cannot be keyword searched, and the data cannot be indexed or retrieved easily. All of that adds up to time and effort being spent on the back end searching for information that, were the format more convenient, being used on more productive activities for the organization.


Clearly, scan-to-email is not the ideal method for an organization looking to digitize its business processes. Instead, an organization seeking to make that crucial change should find a reliable, experienced BPA provider, with experience in data capture, digital imaging, mailroom services and enterprise content management, as well as hard copy storage (for keeping all those printed documents safe and secure once they’ve been digitally converted.) Having such a provider will improve efficiency, guarantee security and compliance, create documents that follow a specific format (and are searchable) and allow an organization’s employees to focus on what counts – the company’s core competencies.

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