Published: 30 July 2019

Reading time: About 4 minutes

In a recent report by independent health think tank, Nuffield Trust entitled “Achieving a digital NHS: Lessons for national policy from the acute sector”, it was stated that, “Creating a digital NHS is a national policy priority. 

It continued, “It promises to improve the quality of care, reduce duplication, drive efficiencies, empower patients and support joined-up services.” 

At Automated Intelligence we are acutely aware of the benefits of digitising records, having a number of UK Health Trusts and health bodies who have undergone digitisation and migration projects with us in the past year.  

But it’s not just health trusts which can reap the benefitof such a strategy and in fact, there are large number of paper-heavy industries who may have long-term digitisation goals, including education, accounting and logistics. 

We know that searching paper documents is time-consumingineffective and costly so in this blog we call out the 7 main advantages of paperless and paper-light operations, and why organisations can get more value out of their data in doing so. 

  • SearchabilityWhen records are scanned, categorised and migrated, relevant content can be found quickly and easily. Compare this to the time spent searching through reams and reams of paper records, often housed in boxes in a separate location away from staff. Records can now be accessed at the point of need, particularly important for patient care. 
  • Accessibility: When documents are available in the Cloud, they are no longer restricted to those who can visit the physical location. It’s access anytime, anywhere. This is important for organisations who have offices in many locations or have remote staff, negating the need for cumbersome practices for sharing information.   
  • Productivity: With digitisation comes many benefits to staff in terms of productivity and efficiency. Benefits such as reducing the burden of data entry, less time wasted searching for records, version control, collaboration and that it is easier to share information means that employees can spend more time on critical tasks, and less on administrative ones.  
  • Preservation: Handling paper documents means that they are exposed to constant physical wear and tearA benefit of digitisation is that they do not need to be accessed as often, preserving the important document from potential damage. 
  • Storage CostsPhysical documents require huge amounts of storage space, whether this is on the organisation’s premises or an external document security facility. If information lives in the Cloud, there is no need for additional physical storage as data volumes grow. That’s more money to spend on patients and services. 
  • GDPRTo be GDPR-compliant you must have a consolidated view of all the personal and sensitive data your organisation holds and know precisely why and where that information is stored. You can imagine how difficult this is with paper documents spread across many locations. When records are digitised and searchable, it is much easier for organisations to find all the PII within their records, reducing the risk of a costly GDPR breach. 
  • Disaster RecoveryFinally, paper-based records are more susceptible to potential disasters. Documents stored in the Cloud are easy to recover if faced with physical risks such as fire, theft and flooding 

Every organisation and industry will have different reasons for digitising records and moving them to the Cloud (it could even be that you just want to ‘go green’!) but ultimately, the broad benefits remain the same.  

With a paperless or paper-light operation, you can access, protect and preserve information in order to drive efficiencies and get more value out of your data. 

If you have a digitisation and migration strategy in mind, speak to us today to find out how we can help you on