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Storing your data digitally: Three things you should know about data archiving

(Image credit: Image Credit: Pitney Bowes Software)

Data is the cornerstone of every modern business. In the past, if a organisations were to get a couple of filing cabinets in the workspace, this provided more than enough space for storage and the level of security required. But times have changed; we now live in a world where companies collect and process vast amounts of information on a daily basis. As a result, it is becoming essential for companies to update the way they are operating in today’s digital era.

According to the Business Digitalisation in Europe Outlook 2019 report, 77.5 per cent of UK companies are very interested in the newest, most efficient software solutions to better store, file and archive all their workplace documents and folders. Despite this willingness, many businesses are hesitant to change or struggle to find the best way to store data and keep it safe. The reality is that some continue to store collected data on paper or even in an on-site sever, which is an inefficient, costly and unsecure method in such a data-heavy business environment.

Cue digital data archiving, a cloud-based technology aimed at storing data that must be retained for legal purposes and audits, such as contracts and invoices. Although not revolutionary, this method allows companies to become more secure, and helps them cut costs and improve the speed of workflows dramatically.

While the benefits of archiving are numerous, businesses are slow to warm to the idea of investing in this technology because of the lack of awareness on their advantages and data privacy concerns. In light of this, let’s take a more detailed look at some of the (often unseen) advantages of turning to digital archiving.

Minimising risk, enhancing security and compliance

Traditionally, all inactive data was stored on paper in filing cabinets, which is now incredibly inefficient for modern businesses operating in a highly competitive digital environment. It’s extremely difficult to keep paper documents from falling into the wrong hands. All it takes is for a single employee to remove a confidential file from the archive, whether that be a contract or financial report and leave it on their desk while they go to lunch, leaving private information open to be seen by anybody walking past. If companies continue to rely heavily on out-dated data storage methods, particularly paper-based ones, they may be creating unnecessary risks and leaving themselves open to a data breach.

However, on-site servers are just as susceptible to damage as filing cabinets, and poorly organised data on company servers can be almost just as chaotic. In essence, merely scanning company data onto servers is not an effective solution. In order to really get to grips with this problem, a business should invest in content management systems such as Content Services, with advanced digital archiving features.

Reducing your costs

A large number of business leaders across Europe made control over their costs a top priority, and are now looking to optimise their efficiency. However, too many of them are still unaware of just how much money they are wasting in not going digital with their data.

The cost of cloud storage is minimal compared to buying and maintaining an ever-growing army of on-site servers. Indeed, associated maintenance and security costs, such as disaster prevention and recovery, will be cut immediately with digital archiving in the cloud. free up funds for smarter investments.

From a financial perspective, it cannot be viable to allocate high expenditures on inactive data, and the capital saved could be reinvested in hiring more employees to boost business growth or helping currently employees engage in more value-added tasks.

Boosting productivity and employee efficiency

Another problem with traditional archiving is having unused data taking up valuable space.

With digital archiving, less unnecessary data is stored on company repositories, on-site servers run faster and allow employees to get on with their work more productively. With more time to focus on their actual tasks, employees will see their productivity levels increase significantly, and customers calling with queries will instantly receive the help they need.

A further advantage of cloud storage is that it permits remote access, but also safeguarded against unauthorised access. That means that, wherever employees are in the world, they will have easy access most up-to-date information, as well as be able edit the same file that other employees are using. Controlling access also prevents the existence of various versions of a document, signalling which is the most recent one to ensure that teams operating from different areas are all working on the same page.

Less inefficiency and frustration mean less headaches for business leaders who can focus on driving company growth. Satisfied customers are the key to success in an enterprise, and they are known to stay loyal to companies that can be seen taking customer service seriously.

What’s stopping you?

It is becoming increasingly common to see data archiving projects moving to the bottom of priority lists when businesses are looking to optimise their workplace. However, the benefits are such that organisations cannot afford to miss it. Archiving data digitally allows for better monitoring on who is accessing the information and what files go missing, minimising risk and enhancing security. Furthermore, archived files will always be where businesses expect them to be, instantly retrievable using keywords to search, enhancing overall business productivity and efficiency.

The question is then: are you ready to give your company the edge it deserves and stay ahead of the competition?

Rod Tonna-Barthet, CEO, Kyocera Document Solutions UK