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Analysis Paralysis? How To Get Started With Document Management

Analysis Paralysis? How To Get Started With Document ManagementWhen your company decides it’s time to improve efficiency and productivity and starts down the path of choosing a digital document management solution, the last thing you want is for that energy to stagnate and eventually die.

But many organizations follow a product-centered approach that invites analysis paralysis and frustration. Meanwhile, your business problems remain unsolved, and may even intensify. 

The problem with focusing on products is that it tries to fit an organization to the document management technology, when it should be the other way around.

These organizations typically become interested in the benefits of document management and begin approaching four to five possible solution providers. The vendors then demo their products, focusing on features. The result is that decision makers end up with all sorts of ideas for how they could use the technology and focus on comparing the features of competing products.

If this situation sounds familiar, stop for a second and take a hard look at your organization’s actual business needs with document management: 

  • What problems do you need to solve?
  • What is the best way to solve them?
  • What document management solution would achieve these goals while delivering the best return-on-investment (ROI)?

The Cost Of Doing Nothing 

When you’re busy comparing products instead of focusing on your business needs, it’s hard to know when you’ve arrived at a worthwhile solution. As you continue to analyze your options, the fear of making the wrong choice tends to creep in, leading to paralysis. 

If you’re considering a move to digital document management, it’s probably because you’re experiencing some pains with your current situation. A stalled decision process only perpetuates that pain, often at a significant cost. 

Imagine a company with several locations, and that people at these locations have to gather all of their paper invoices and orders, package them and send them to the corporate office on a daily or weekly basis. The costs to mail these packages and manually process the paper documents quickly add up. The business may be successful, but it is needlessly throwing money and labor at a problem that could be solved by implementing a digital document management system.

Getting Unstuck

The best way to break through this paralysis and choose a system that meets your needs (rather than the vendor’s needs) is to identify a single problem to address and choose a document management system that solves it. Once you master that problem in your organization, you’re ready to move onto the next pain point, problem or department need.

Some document management solutions are tailored for accounting, for example, or for specific industries, such as law firms or manufacturing. Others offer more general capabilities that are broadly applicable. Which type is best depends on your situation, but when companies try to get every department to agree on a solution, they tend to over-analyze and stall out.  

That’s not to say that you shouldn’t look for a system that’s able to grow with your company through broad capabilities and scalability. But if you establish the ROI based on solving a single, significant problem, you’re not going to lose on your technology investment. If the system is later able to solve all sorts of other business issues — and it should — that additional value is a bonus.

Some organizations tackle the paralysis problem by hiring a consultant to help them think through their business needs, figure out the best solution and establish ROI — and that’s a good option in some circumstances. But you should also expect this focus on your needs from document management providers and vendors. Demand that they address your pain points and have a plan for solving them and helping to establish your ROI. 

Want to learn more about how digital document management could solve your business problems? Contact DocuWare today for a free consultation and your document management roadmap

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