The True Impact of Documents on Business Today

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1 The True Impact of Documents on Business Today The paper explosion Even though we ve been striving for the paperless office for many years, it seems as if we are generating exponentially more paper on a daily basis. It has been estimated that organizations double the amount of paper they are filing every 10 years, with each worker generating an estimated 45 15,000 sheets of paper per day. The problems with all of this paper are myriad. Paper files are hard to find, as the document you may need may be misfiled, in use by another employee, or lost. It also costs a significant amount of money to file and maintain all of this paper. An average 4-drawer file cabinet can hold approximately 15,000 sheets of paper. It costs almost $10,000 to fill a 4-drawer file cabinet, and it can cost another $26,000 in retrieval labor per year for maintenance of paper files. Studies have shown that the average document in an organization is photocopied 19 times, with 25% of the filing time for that document being spent in walking to and from the photocopier. And then there is the cost of housing paper files. It has been estimated that it costs approximately $30 per square foot to keep the cabinet within an organization s office. Given a 9 square foot cabinet, the average cost will be approximately $270 annually just to house one 4- drawer file cabinet. Multiply this by the actual number of file cabinets in the organization, and one can quickly see the costs involved. Recent technology advances related to conversion of paper and microfilm documents to digital formats are now driving more and more companies to reassess just how much it really costs them to keep paper document archives over the long run. What is ECM? Enterprise Content Management (ECM) encompasses several technologies, tools, and processes used to capture, manage, store, preserve and deliver document and records content in various forms across an How much do your hard copy files really cost? Some facts to consider: The average company spends between 7-14% of its total costs on document processing in a paper environment An estimated 7.4% of staff time is spent searching for documents Average storage cost per page = $.014 per year, or about $1,400 per file cabinet Storage requirements for hard copy documents DOUBLE every 3 years The average company spends 280 hours annually per employee looking for lost documents Due to a lack of solid disaster recovery planning, 70% of companies NEVER fully recover from a disaster Sources: American Records Management Association (ARMA), IDC enterprise. ECM is a broad umbrella term that encompasses several varieties of technologies, including imaging, document management, records management, archiving/repositories, and web content management.

2 Document imaging generally refers to the process of scanning forms and documents and converting those documents into standardized digital file formats. Many companies also elect to utilize specialized capture tools that enable OCR (optical character recognition) processing to facilitate either an automated or manual indexing process. In the indexing process, key pieces of information are tagged to enable streamlined searches using document search/retrieval software. At a minimum, documents and forms that have been scanned are usually stored in a digital document repository application, or simply archived on CD-ROMs or microfilm. However, many companies today are electing to extract the maximum amount of value possible out of their archived documents, by making them accessible via an Electronic Document Management (EDMS) or Records Information Management (RIM) system. EDMS is a widely used acronym for Electronic Document Management System. Although they often differ slightly in functionality, the term Records Information Management (RIM) system is also used to refer to systems used to manage corporate documents, forms, and records. These systems enable streamlined retrieval of documents, forms, and records, based upon intelligent indexing schemes embedded in the documents, or via sophisticated search engine tool capabilities, or a combination of the two. There are numerous software companies offering various EDMS and RIM solutions today. When combined with document imaging, capture, conversion, and indexing processes, EDMS and/or RIM solutions provide a means by which paper, microfilm, aperture cards, and other documents can be transformed into easily retrievable electronic files. These files can then be shared across an organization, permitting simultaneous use, and significantly increasing employee productivity. Some EDMS and RIM applications are web-enabled, allowing users to utilize intranets or extranets to access repositories and deliver information. Many of these solutions are web-enabled via integration with a separate Web Content Management application. It is widely agreed that there is no single document or records management solution that is appropriate for all businesses. Each individual company must carefully assess their technical requirements, the volume of documents and data to be handled, and examine current and future workflow process plans to arrive at a selection of the best solution for their needs. Also involved is the decision as to what portions of the document or records management projects and processes can be outsourced to vendors, and which should remain in-house. Many companies often rely upon consultants or document- and records-oriented technology vendors to support their evaluation of these important decisions. What Type of Documents can be Converted? Virtually any type of document in any business organization can be converted to electronic format and managed in a document management solution. For many years, it has been a common practice for banks and finance organizations to utilize microfilm to capture and archive images of checks and remittance advice forms, and indeed a number of specialized software applications were developed just to accommodate these specific types of documents. In the past, many banks were still content with maintaining numerous filing cabinets full of other types of banking documents and general day-today business process documents. However, this trend is changing rapidly, with numerous banks now taking advantage of imaging and document management solutions for all of their business process documents.

3 Some of the types of documents in the banking and finance industry that are amenable to conversion and storage on a document management system include: Signature Cards Savings/Checking Account application forms Customer Account Statements Loan Application Forms Letters of Credit Credit Card Applications Personnel Records (for bank employees) Accounts Payable/Accounts Receivable related documents (invoices from vendors, vendor communications, POs, service contracts, licensing agreements, etc.) Additionally, many of the archived documents that were previously stored on microfilm and microfiche can now be converted to a digital format, with embedded indexing added to files to enable rapid retrieval of archived data. What about information that is already in electronic format? Most document and records management solutions provide a means by which existing forms, documents, or records which are currently processed in an automated or online fashion (for example, web-based account application forms or messages) can be integrated and incorporated with any backfile documents that are being scanned, indexed and loaded into the system. Similarly, new documents can be authored using the document management system, with indexing capabilities automatically built into the functionality of the application itself.

4 Calculating Your Hard Copy Costs Following is a template to help you assess your current costs for maintaining paper or microfilm documents. This template can be reused to assess each category/type of hard copy document maintained in your organization. Your account representative can work with you to compile and review this information as it pertains to your individual organization. 1. Type of Document: Accounts Payable Loan Department Docs Accounts Receivable HR Documents Signature Cards/New Account Packages Credit Card/Line of Credit Application Forms Other 2. Number of Pages per Day Week Month Year 3. Filing time required per document 4. Average Hourly Wage (Filing) Average minutes spent per doc: 5. Estimated Percentage of lost documents (Average 7.5%) 6. Cost to replace lost documents (photocopying, filing, staff time, paper, equip. -- ($220 average cost) 7. Cost to print/photocopy document (e.g., $0.03 per page X # of pages) 8. FAX cost per document (in cents) (FAX equip., staff time, phone costs) 9. Mailing, Long Distance FAX Costs per document 10. Square footage of facility 11. Square footage used for document storage 12. Cost per square foot for document storage 13. TOTAL ESTIMATED COST FOR PAPER DOCUMENTS

5 The Benefits of Going Paperless Adding Value At a minimum, simply scanning an organization s documents can bring significant improvements related to data and documents: Document Security and Confidentiality Protection improvements Increased Efficiency in Searching and Data Retrieval Distribution Process Improvements o Savings in courier and mail services for transporting documents Lower Operating Expenses o Decreased physical storage space requirements o Decreased record management headcount requirements Improved Overall Employee Productivity Auditing Process Support Improved Customer Support Support of Regulatory Requirements Implementation of broader document or records management solutions can lead to even more realized benefits and efficiencies in these areas over the long term. Are you in compliance? Recent legislation is now starting to have a significant impact on how businesses manage their documents and records. Your organization may be required to demonstrate compliance with one or all of these recent and pending regulations: Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act Outlines new standards relating to administrative, technical and physical information safeguards for financial institutions. Sarbanes-Oxley Act Financial reporting and auditing requirements for publicly traded companies. HIPAA Health Information Portability and Accountability Act. Regulations governing privacy standards for medical records. U.S. Patriot Act Enacted in 2001 in response to 9/11 terrorist acts. The intent is for banks, credit unions and other financial institutions to verify the identity of all people who do business with them. Banks and credit unions are required to verify the identity of members applying for and opening new accounts or services. Interagency White Paper on Sound Practices to Strengthen the Resilience of the U.S. Financial System Published by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and the Securities and Exchange Commission. This paper defines sound practices to advise financial institutions on steps necessary to protect the financial system in light of new risks posed by the post-september 11 th environment. Should reach Final Rule status in 2004 for core financial institutions, and in 2005 for other firms that play significant roles in critical financial markets.

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