Although document management solutions have been transforming paper to digital for more than 20 years, it is still a painful process for some companies (Yours also? Check our blog post “Top things never to miss to ensure the success of your paper-free initiatives“). But shreds of evidence are clear, and many others are already celebrating the ‘paperless’ and ‘salesmore’ experience.
The value proposition of implementing paperless processes from start to finish (capture-to-deliver) includes 6 irresistible things leveraged by business model flexibilization and business process automation:
- saving (eliminating order to cash delays, increasing sales and productivity, having access to better key performance indicators);
- retaining (reducing the gap between sales and registrations, improving customer engagement, getting the full registration process under 1 minute);
- complying (reducing risks, avoiding legal issues, tracking users);
- storing (increasing data security and protection, gaining back-end features on-device, getting encrypted, secured and qualified signatures);
- serving (improving end-to-end process time, capturing anytime/anywhere, having the full process on-device);
- data quality (automating capture and ensuring on-device validation, efficiently handling fallouts/exceptions, eliminating wrong filling).
In fact, a study from AIIM – Association for Information and Image Management – confirms these gains according to the users themselves. It asked the participants what have been the biggest benefits from their paperless processes and here are the top 6 with returns that can take less than 6 months.
What are the top 6 main benefits from paperless processes?
The main benefits from paperless processes reported by respondents were:
- Faster customer response (internal/external)
- Reduced staff resource/higher productivity
- Cleaner audit trail and regulatory compliance
- Better monitoring of status and workloads
- Fewer errors
- Improved remote/mobile accessibility
Also according to this study, 59% of respondents reported having achieved payback from their paper-free projects in less than 12 months. Moreover, 28% have achieved it in less than 6 months. These are amongst the highest ROI rates that have ever been reported to AIIM for capture projects.
AIIM study highlights: paper-free benefits reported
Faster customer response is the biggest benefit from paper-free processes reported by respondents. In the second place, comes improved productivity, followed by cleaner audit trails for regulatory compliance.
Based on user outcomes, additional benefits include better monitoring and visibility of the process workflow and fewer errors in the process. Also, in the list is improved remote and mobile access – although not very high, probably because back-office workers are not likely to work out of the office.
Better management of exceptions and escalation is an increasing benefit, as more adaptive and case-oriented systems are building-in intelligence that can drive flexible workflows while still maintaining compliance.
2 top criteria to measure paper-free projects success
AIIM asked survey respondents about two major criteria to measure paper-free projects success. Process cycle times was found to be a key metric, along with the general benefit to the business, ongoing cost savings and customer response times.
Compliance and audit success are also measurable outcomes. On the other hand, time to value or payback period is a key parameter for few respondents, although paper-free projects can show enormous returns in this area.
Not convinced yet? What keeps you from go paper-free? Share with us!
– Check your company’s workflows, customer satisfaction, regulatory compliance, mobile approach, and productivity
– If you think it’s time to get paper out of your processes and you need some expert assistance (technology / implementation / consulting), get in touch with us
– If you have already implemented a paper-free initiative, what have been the keys to success? Share with us in the comments
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