Pearl Document Scanning Blog

News and updates related to the document scanning industry.

Preservation Through Scanning

Preservation Through Scanning

The world is around 4.5 billion years old. And the human race about 200,000 million, so in that time, we have created some amazing memories, key pieces of history and contributed to the world as we know it today. Yet none of this would be possible for us to know without the reading about it. Yes, we can hear stories from our elders, but to really understand how the world once was, we need to read about people’s experiences first-hand.

The problem with this is the fact that some of these items are hundreds – if not thousands – of years old. So as time progresses, these deteriorate until they become unfathomable. But this is where scanning comes in. A somewhat new concept, the idea of digitalising endangered documents has been hailed as a way to preserve historical items for future use. Turning ‘analogue’ materials into digital forms, it means that they can essentially last forever.

Manuscripts, books and historical documents have all been digitised and locked forever into digital forms. The 11th-century Doomesday Book is one of the most prominent. The 1000 year old book is now online for all to sift through at their leisure. And in the 10 years since it has been online, it has attracted a whole new audience ready to discover more about the key document.

There are currently around 80 million pieces of information digitised and published and preserved online. And highlighting just how important this is, there were 17 million visits to the UK Government Web Archive last year.

Featuring texts from around the world, the digital library is awash with important information that is key to building our history. Highlighting what brought us here today, the documents and manuscripts enable us to build a picture about what life was like for our forefathers – both in this country, and right around the world.

Medieval manuscripts are some of the oldest to adorn the archives, detailing life between the 5th to the 15th century. Key for understanding the incredible history of life hundreds of years ago, the documents make for fascinating reading for historians and those keen to learn more about life before most of the items we know and love today were even invented.

Photographs and negatives paint a glorious picture of life before modern cars, buildings and technology. Yet photographs are extremely fragile and can be destroyed in an instant. Digitalising these can help to preserve them for many years to come, allowing future generations to look back in awe at the world as it once was.

Before technology and the internet, newspapers were essentially the only way to find out what was happening in the local area and beyond. Chronicling history day by day, scanning newspapers offers an incredible insight into life 50, 100 and even 150 years ago.

As the world develops, more and more documents will be created. Treaties, contracts and scripts are all important parts of our history that, more often than not, are physical items. By making sure these are preserved sooner rather than later, we can ensure that our history will be remembered for years to come.

Should you outsource your document scanning?

Should you outsource your document scanning?

Companies across the world are using document scanning solutions to help them reduce the amount of paper they use on a daily basis for a number of different reasons. Some want to free up space in their office that is currently consumed by huge piles of paper. Others are looking to find a way to easily locate historic documentation; even with the most organised filing cabinets or archiving system, finding specific paper files can be very time confusing. Finally, when scanning a document to PDF it is preserved digitally forever and will not deteriorate, get lost or get damaged as a paper file will.

Whatever your reason is for looking to implement a document scanning strategy, you are faced with a decision to make. Should you invest in the appropriate equipment to scan and store files digitally in-house, or should you outsource your document scanning solutions to an expert provider?

In-house document scanning

Some choose to keep their document scanning in-house to try and keep costs down, or because they are concerned about the privacy of their sensitive data. By going down this route you will need to invest in proper infrastructure set up and training, as well as maintaining this new system you have implemented continuously. Going down this route can result in high costs, as well as time spent on training staff up to a high enough level so they are able to cope with the specialised task of managing a document scanning system.

 

Outsourcing scanning services

Outsourcing your scanning services to an expert company means that you can experience the benefits of document scanning immediately, without the need for lengthy and costly set-ups in-house. Allowing another company to store your documents in a digital format will ensure that you are left with a high quality end product. Because external document scanning companies are experts in their field, they will also be able to apply additional extras such as indexing, categorisation, and OCR, leaving you with a much more useful digital data base. Many companies offer an end-to-end solution, meaning they will take care of properly disposing of your paper documentation once it has been scanned, ridding your office free of clutter for good!

Although at first it may be tempting to think about setting up a scanning system in-house, outsourcing this task to knowledgeable experts can ultimately save you time and money in the long run, as well as giving you better quality digital files. 

Whether you have a large, on-going scanning requirement, or need a small ‘scan on demand’ service, contact the Pearl Scan Group today where we will be happy to help you with all your document scanning solutions.  

Increase productivity with document scanning

Increase productivity with document scanning

Many organisations now use document scanning services throughout their office using them to scan invoices, help with HR record management and even to facilitate a totally digital mailroom. There are a number of different reasons as to why this virtual way of managing documents is chosen, including the cost benefits and digital preservation of physical files, but the main motive for implementing document scanning services is to increase productivity.

Reduce clutter

Many offices are guilty of harbouring large amounts of clutter, with piles of letters, documents, and files accumulating on personal desks and in the wider working environment. Clutter is not only distracting and messy, it can also effect levels of productivity in a large way. A report by the Princeton Neuroscience Institute entitled ‘Interactions of Top-Down and Bottom-Up Mechanisms in Human Visual Cortex’ revealed that in a cluttered environment, the brain has too many visual stimuli which restricts the ability to focus, as well as limiting your ability to process information. With lots of information for the brain to process, mental resources are also used up much quicker, causing higher levels of frustration which can negatively affect ability to work effectively. Making the change to using a digital mailroom can improve this by removing any junk mail, and sending only the messages that matter directly to those that need it in a digital format. Desk space is also cleared when scanning documents to PDF as files that were once shared by printing out and handing to a colleague can easily be sent with a click of the mouse.

Easy access to information

Much of a working day can be spent on locating the physical information that is needed to complete the actual task at hand. For example, a HR professional needs access to multiple records on a regular basis such as employee details and payroll documents. In a conventional office environment, time can be wasted searching through filing cabinets and unorganised drawers to find the data needed. When implementing a HR document scanning solution, or any document scanning and management services, virtual files are stored in a digital database which organises and categories the information so it can be found quickly and easily. Staff will be able to achieve much more with the time that is then freed up, boosting morale as well as productivity.

Free up space

Bulky filing cabinets, bulging mailrooms and unorganised storage cupboards take up a lot of room in the office, but when implementing document scanning and management solutions there is no need for this space to be wasted. While your staff enjoy higher levels of productivity from the organisation achieved and time saved when using this virtual system, creating more room in the office can open doors to opportunities for growth. More desk space is now available, allowing you to hire the new staff you need that will help make your workflows run much more smoothly.