Many agencies moving toward a paperless reality

June 26th, 2013 | Posted by Kevin Corley in Document and Information Capture | Document Management

For years, businesses and towns have aimed to eliminate paper in order to drive efficiency and reduce costs, but reaching this objective was not always possible. Now, however, conversion services and advancements in electronic document management technologies are enabling firms to realize all the potential benefits of these initiatives.

In a report for PublicTechnology, Associate Director of Business Informatics (Analytics) at Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust, Orlando Agrippa, reported that enterprises no longer need to wait around for the right toolset to meet the paperless challenge. Instead, he asserted can deploy the currently available solutions to get closer to achieving these goals. The healthcare sector has been particularly adamant about these efforts. Fortunately, the right technologies exist to digitize records and gain deeper visibility into a variety of operations as a result. Agrippa noted that he has observed many healthcare organizations trying to transition to a paperless environment, and he noted that many firms are still struggling to properly use digital technologies to gain deeper insight into patient records. Agrippa emphasized that it is critical to have adequate support from staff when adopting a paperless transition. Further, he noted that the solution implemented needs to be easy to use, with an intuitive interface. Employees should be able to gain quick access to information and analytics to drive better decision-making and overall higher productivity.

Inherent advantages
If these capabilities can be achieved, Agrippa was adamant that there are tangible benefits. Benton County, Wash., is one government that is seeking to reap these kinds of rewards, according to the Tri-City Herald. The source revealed that the county has decided to scan and digitize historic paper records for a variety of reasons, one of which is security. As flooding or other disasters could threaten the survival of these critical documents, the government has decided it's important to have electronic copies. Additionally, the source pointed out that digital documents will free up a significant amount of storage space and reduce the county's environmental footprint.

"It makes a lot of sense, especially with the newer generations coming up," said Commissioner Jerome Delvin, the Tri-City Herald reported. "The public is getting more and more used to this."

The news provider revealed that officials have cited dealing with a backlog of paper records is a critical first step in this paperless transition. While some other county departments have already digitized records, others may be separately addressed down the road. County and department leaders are planning to meet to devise an implementation plan.

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