3 reasons why you need better records management
by Sarah Schmid
My dad worked for nearly 40 years as a dentist, all before the advent of cloud storage.
That means that all of his patient files were kept in boxes marked by letter of the alphabet and year —and there were tons of them. It became a family endeavor to manage all of those records, and inevitably, some slipped through the cracks.
Though it may sound dull, records management is a vitally important part of any business. Not doing it right can cost a lot of money in lost productivity, compliance issues, exposure to liability or lawsuits and security breaches. Thankfully, records management today has improved significantly since those days of pen and paper.
Ideally, your company’s record management strategy will organize information so that it’s timely, accurate, accessible and complete. While this can be difficult to handle, there are partners out there who work with record management programs or enterprise platforms — and in today’s liability-obsessed climate, they have become a near-necessary expense.
Not convinced? Here are three reasons why you can’t afford to not improve your company’s record management system:
1. Efficiency is key
Moving records offsite frees up space, boosts employee productivity, and helps your business achieve greater cost savings. Take a look at automating your records management system as soon as possible, and if you don’t know where to turn, consider looking toward a vendor or reputable partner who can help guide you.
2. Play by the rules
When it comes to record-keeping rules, laws can create major compliance headaches for businesses — especially if their records are hard to locate or decipher. The same goes for litigation risks; if your record management program isn’t consistent and rigorous, then your company is vulnerable to legal consequences. This becomes challenging if your company is operating across borders. The regulations that your business may be bound by in Asia may only be a footnote in the EU, or vice versa.
Poor records and document management is the key contributing factor to compliance and regulatory issues. Nip all that in the bud by implementing a record management strategy that takes laws and regulations into consideration from the start.
3. Improve your corporate memory
With all of these new technologies storming the workplace, along with the imminent, massive worker turnover that will result when Baby Boomers start retiring, corporate America’s institutional memory is in jeopardy. Every day, your company is creating records that will fuel future planning and decision-making. Past records can effectively guide new hires — if those records have been managed properly. Don’t let the hard work of the past get lost in the shuffle. Spending time now to properly index your information and records now can pay off handsomely somewhere down the line.
It’s time for better records management
Sometimes, the areas of your business that can have the biggest impact on your bottom line are the little things right under your nose. Records management isn’t on the mind of most of the C-suite. But the impact that the right information processes can have on a business can be massive.
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