Creating a Document Management System for Your Small Business

A document management system will track, manage, and store all of your documents in an effort to streamline your business processes and reduce the amount of paper in your office. Creating and implementing a document management system is essential to efficiency in the modern small business. Let’s take a look at how to best go about adopting a document management system that will fit the needs of your company and seamlessly integrating it into your workflows.

Start with a plan
Your first step should be taking a close look at the type of documents that your business handles regularly. Organize the various document templates and map out the rules associated with each type of document. For example, some documents need to be time-stamped during a particular review process that passes through several employees. Create rules designating where particular documents should be located and how they should be saved. Establishing solid filing practices will make it easy to file and retrieve documents going forward.

Be sure to consider security as well for the types of documents that are being shared. Through rules and permissions allow only authorized users to have access to certain confidential information. Creating these access controls will help ensure the security of your data and facilitate regulatory compliance.

Implement your plan
Once you’ve carefully worked out the details of your document management plan, it’s time to implement it. Provide thorough training to your staff and explain the tangible benefits they’ll experience from your document management solution to help ensure buy-in from your employees. Document management works best when your staff fully understands how to create, store, and receive documents, as well as how doing so will make their lives easier.

Always follow up
Once your document management system is up and running, don’t just go about business as usual assuming that everything is automatically working smoothly without any kinks. Do some regular spot checks to look for misfiles and to make sure your workflows are moving along as intended. Continue to educate and remind your employees about the inner workings of the system. The better your employees understand how and why things work, the more successful the system will be.

Would your business benefit from a document management solution? Contact the experts at Infomax Office Systems to help you find and implement the right solution for your workplace.

Why More Businesses are Bringing Digital Production Printing In-house

When it comes to large print jobs for your business, you have two options: outsource your projects to a print shop or print them in-house. Many of today’s businesses are turning to an in-house approach with digital production printing due to a number of benefits that are difficult to pass up. The driving factor for doing it in-house is control; there’s no more need to rely on outside vendors to meet your quality standards or deadlines. The use of an in-house digital production printer puts the full control of your printing projects directly into your hands.

Along with having full control of your jobs, in-house production printing brings along some other great benefits. Let’s take a look at some other ways they can help your business.

Quality you can depend on
How many times have you received a product from an outside vendor that didn’t quite meet your quality standards? An in-house digital production printer puts an end to that problem. These devices provide enhanced color capabilities that typical office printers and copiers cannot offer. Most importantly, you can keep a watchful eye on the results all throughout the production printing stages to ensure that the output meets your qualifications.

Reliability and flexibility to meet your needs
With an in-house production printer, you don’t have to rely on outside vendors to meet your deadlines. You can ensure that all of your projects are completed on time. You will also have the flexibility to add jobs to your schedule however you see fit. For example, let’s say you get a last-minute need for a print job that has to be completed in a rush. You can complete the job in time without having to work around the schedule of an outside print shop, or pay more money for a rush order.

Increased security
Printing often involves sensitive or confidential information. For example, let’s say you need to print up some HR materials with company policies and confidential employee information. By printing these jobs in-house, you completely avoid the chance of this information ending up in the wrong hands. In today’s world of identity theft and corporate data breaches, you can never be too cautious.

Take control of your print jobs with an in-house approach to production printing. For more information on how it can benefit your business, contact Infomax Office Systems today.

Why Your Business Needs a Disaster Recovery Strategy

Due to the multitude of cyberthreats we face today, businesses need to be ready for anything when it comes to data security. Whether it’s a natural disaster, a cyberattack, or just human error, there’s always the looming threat of a potential data disaster that could strike your company at anytime. This is why it is so important to have a disaster recovery strategy in place to avoid downtime—or worse, a complete shutdown.

Some eye-popping stats regarding data disasters
If you’re a small business, the following numbers are extremely unsettling. Again, this is a testament to the importance of a disaster recovery strategy. According to the Colorado Springs Gazette:
• Nearly 40 percent of small businesses close after a disaster—and only 25 percent of that group ever reopen
• 52 percent of small businesses say it would take at least three months to recover from a disaster
• 75 percent of small businesses do not have a disaster recovery plan in place

Mobile devices exacerbate the data security problem
Most likely, your employees utilize mobile devices to conduct business on a daily basis. Unfortunately, these devices increase your risk of a potential data breach. If a phone is left behind at a meeting or in a public space, it can easily fall into the wrong hands. A disaster recovery strategy will counter this issue by enabling remote lockdowns and device wipes on all authorized mobile devices in the event that one goes missing or stolen.

Your reputation is on the line
We know the kind of damage a disaster can cause your business when it comes to downtime and shutdowns—but don’t ignore the damage it will do to your reputation. It takes years of hard work to build trustworthy reputations amongst your clients. A data breach with no recovery plan in place will surely sour your relationships in no time. Potential clients will also be wary about going into business with your company after a data disaster.

A little preparation goes a long way
It’s essential for businesses to not downplay the seriousness of a disaster recovery strategy. Even with a temporary solution in place, you can keep your operations afloat following an emergency. Regular cloud backups and off-site backups are essential pieces to a disaster recovery strategy that require regular maintenance and management. This kind of diligence will show your clients just how much you value the vital data that makes up your company, and foster trust.

To learn more about data recovery strategies and how they can help your business in the event of a disaster, contact us today.

Scanning Documents to Save Time and Money

If you work in a paper-centric office, there’s no doubt you’re familiar with the struggle associated with accessing the information you need to do your job. Files stored in paper form residing in old fashioned file folders within disorganized filing cabinets present big problems when it comes time to access data on demand. Finding a piece of paper in this less-than-ideal storage system can prove to be vexing, if not completely fruitless.

Thankfully, there is a better, more efficient way to store your documents. It all starts with scanning your paper documents via document imaging and converting them to digital files. This revolutionary method of storage will eliminate paper clutter in your office, benefitting your business immensely. How so? Let’s start with saving your company both time and money.

Save time through instant archiving and retrieval of files and documents
Time equals money in business, and storing files in paper form is costing you a bundle. How much time is spent in your office manually filing documents or searching for them after the fact? However much time it adds up to, scanning your documents and storing them electronically makes it possible to accomplish these tasks in a fraction of the time. This surplus in available time can instead be used for more important, value-adding tasks. Additionally, being able to retrieve documents in an instant will positively impact productivity, collaboration, and customer service within your company.

Save money by reducing overhead expenses
Printing documents to paper costs money, from the paper being printed on to the consumables used to print with. Storing documents in paper form takes up more space than doing so electronically, which also adds to your overhead. By scanning your documents and converting them to digital form, you’ll eliminate these printing costs from your budget. You’ll also eliminate filing expenses, as well as the need for additional space to store paper documents, which can be costly. You can downsize to a smaller, less expensive office, or use that newly available space for something that generates revenue.

The benefits provided by scanning documents and storing them digitally make it easy to understand why so many organizations have moved away from storing them in paper form. Contact Infomax Office Systems to get started.

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Gain a Competitive Advantage with Document Management

Companies are always in search of the latest feature or killer app that gives them a clear advantage over their competitors. The ongoing shift from paper to digital is one such advantage that many companies are implementing. Digital document management offers companies a way to shift from paper-intensive processes to faster and more efficient digital processes.

The following describes how document management can give your company the competitive edge it needs to survive in today’s business climate.

Improvement in Productivity

Whether it involves searching for crucial documents or filling out forms, utilizing paper-based processes can prove costly in terms of time and cost. Transitioning to a digital document management solution paves the way for faster searches, live auditing capabilities, and automated workflows that ultimately improves productivity for employees.

Increased in Security

Paper documents are easy to lose track of and difficult to dispose of when needed. Achieving compliance with paper documents can also be difficult, making a digital solution the best option for your business’s compliance and archival efforts. With automated file retention, fine-tuned permissions controls, controls against malware and other malicious activity, and accurate auditing capabilities, digital document management provides a secure means of completing critical workflows.

Enhanced Employee Collaboration

Today’s employees are no longer tied to their desks. Instead, you can find them using the latest improvements in mobile technology to work outside of the office. With a highly mobile workforce, collaboration via paper can prove time-consuming and inefficient.

A well-designed document management solution enables seamless collaboration. Employees can securely share, edit, and finalize project files, with the option to audit and roll back changes as needed. Teams can work together on crucial projects from virtually any location without worrying about document access.

Expansion in Profitability

A surprising number of companies are still heavily vested in paper document storage, spending billions of dollars each year on on-premises and off-site document storage solutions. Digital document management offers a way for companies to eliminate those costs by shifting their storage needs from the physical to the digital realm. By taking advantage of digital alternatives, companies can free up physical storage space, reduce off-site storage expenses, and add further value to their bottom line.

Get in touch with Infomax to learn more about how digital document management can work for your company.

The Benefits of MPS are Many

Managed Print Services (MPS) is a cost-effective, time-saving solution for all aspects of your printing environment. MPS is all about optimizing and streamlining your devices to meet the specific needs of your business. MPS brings a load benefits to your entire printing fleet, including printers, copiers, scanners, and fax machines.

Print fleet analysis
An MPS program will provide a full analysis of your current print set up. This detailed analysis will lay out a plan to manage your printer fleet. It may call for upgrades to certain devices, removal of redundant or unnecessary machines, or changes in print device locations. In the end, the result of this analysis will lead to an increase in efficiency in your office space.

Reduced print volumes
MPS will provide you with ways to cut back on unnecessary printing and wasted supplies, lowering your overall printing costs. Utilizing rules-based printing, you can route print jobs to the printer best suited for the job type, set printers to default to black-and-white printing, prohibit printing of emails and web pages, and default to duplex printing to automatically print on both sides of paper.

Security upgrades
We all know the importance of security when it comes to our data. MPS will ensure that your devices have built-in user authentication and activity tracking. An MPS program will also encrypt device data and add comprehensive permissions to make sure only authorized personal have access to sensitive information.

Increased efficiency and reduced equipment downtime
Increasing efficiency is at the core of every MPS program; it’s all about doing more with less. For example, remote printing allows your employees to print from off-site locations. For businesses with remote employees and road warriors, this is a great option to improve the efficiency of your workflows. You can also eliminate equipment downtime through automatic supply restocking when the machine starts to run low on ink or toner. This allows your workflows to keep moving without bottlenecks occurring due to lack of supplies.

If your printing fleet could use some fine tuning, an MPS program is the way to go. A print fleet analysis with Infomax Office Systems will help optimize your printer fleet to streamline workflows around your office. Contact us today to learn more about an MPS program for your business.

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Boost ROI with Managed IT Services

The goal of just about every business is to boost their return on investment (ROI). Businesses can improve their ROI by earning more or saving more. While you may be focused on earning more, you should consider the savings that comes from spending smarter with Managed IT Services. Here is some information about how Managed IT can boost your ROI significantly.

Increased Efficiency

One way Managed IT Services can boost your company’s ROI is by freeing up your IT department for more value-adding tasks. Chances are, your IT department currently spends a substantial amount of time on troubleshooting issues that are beyond their scope. However, with Managed IT, your IT department won’t have to deal with these issues anymore. Instead, your IT department can focus on more important matters that are within their skillset.

In fact, when it comes to Managed IT, your IT team is not only the department that will benefit. Non-technical employees will also be able to focus on their respective tasks without having to worry about trying to diagnose issues on their own. Productivity will soar when your employees are able to focus on the tasks that they do best.

Cost Savings

Managed IT Services have been shown to lead to major cost savings for businesses. If you hire a single network manager, you will need to pay for their expertise, including salary, overhead, and benefits. Consider that you will also need to purchase all of the infrastructure like software, hardware, and networks, as well as pay for continuing education to ensure your employees are up-to-date on the latest tech security and trends. On the other hand, if you outsource the management of your IT network to a Managed IT Services provider, you won’t have to worry about all of these costs. The costs will be spread across all of your provider’s clients, creating a much more affordable option for your business.

Streamlined Systems

Not only is sharing your infrastructure more cost effective, it is also much more efficient. Many businesses have transitioned to shared infrastructure, creating a more sustainable and efficient setup. If you’ve been thinking about switching to shared infrastructure, a Managed IT partner will be able to help you every step of the way. Your Managed IT partner will ensure the maximum efficiency of your power, servers, storage space, drivers, and more.

Security

Recently, many large companies have been on the news for experiencing data breaches. Fortunately, a Managed IT provider can keep your data secure and regularly backed up, so even your network crashes due to human error, you can be back up and running in no time. Having a Managed IT provider in your corner to protect you from hackers and ensure your systems are available gives businesses peace of mind to focus on their core efforts instead of focusing their time and efforts solely on IT.

For more information about how you can boost ROI with Managed IT, contact Infomax today.

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Why Faxing Remains Relevant as Office Equipment

We have email, which is fast and powerful. We have old fashioned snail mail, which remains reliable and tangible. But what about faxing? This venerable office technology is a classic that remains beneficial to businesses for good reason: it’s fast, easy, direct, secure, legal, and tangible. Read on for a few reasons why faxing is still a critical piece of office equipment for many small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs)

The Original Push Notification
There you are, going about your day, when a document appears that needs attention. That’s right, faxes are the original push notification. When a fax is received and a physical document is printed, that document serves as notice and reminder to the recipient—this is an item to be dealt with. Don’t have the time to stop and check your emails all day? Let the faxes come to you.

Dependability
Fax machines communicate through direct connections over a standard telephone line. Internet service down? No problem. Fax machines make it possible to send documents even if the recipient doesn’t have high-speed Internet. Moreover, with faxing you don’t have to worry about file compatibility issues. All that’s needed to access your faxed document is your recipient’s eyes.

Security
Unlike email, there’s a very low risk of interception when sending faxes, which is why they’re ideal for documents that need to stay safe and private. Fax machines cannot be ‘hacked’ like your email server can, and incoming documents are also secure—not vulnerable to the hidden malware and viruses that can come with email attachments.

Legality
While changes are underway regarding the validity of digital forms of signature, signatures on faxed documents have long been accepted as official signatures—as good as the original. Finance, retail, legal, real estate, medical — all of these industries recognize the validity of a faxed signature. Sending signed official documents by fax is still the standard.

Fast, secure, reliable, tangible. With these benefits, no wonder there’s still an important role for fax technology in today’s small and mid-sized businesses. If you’re looking for attention-getting communications that are secure and legally accepted, fax just might be the tool you need. From dedicated fax machines to integrated multi-function devices, contact Infomax Office Systems today to get all the facts about fax office equipment.

Why Leasing Office Technology Might Be Right for You

When it comes time to replace or upgrade your office equipment, an important decision must be made for your organization: should you lease or buy? For a great number businesses, leasing is the most popular choice when it comes to acquiring office technology. To learn why, let’s take a look at two of the most common types of leases, capital leases and operating leases. Understanding the ins and outs of these leasing options will help prepare you for when it comes to time to make the final decision.

Capital leases
With a capital lease, your organization experiences all of the benefits and downfalls of owning the equipment. Capital leases are typically used in instances where the lessee plans to buy the device at the end of the lease term for a specific amount. Both the interest and principal being paid for the lease go toward the cost of the equipment, and all assets and liabilities for the device are placed on the lessee’s balance sheet. This type of lease is the least common option used, most often when a business wants to purchase a device without paying for it up front.

Operating leases
An operating lease keeps equipment off of the lessee’s balance sheet. The lender owns the equipment and receives the benefits associated with depreciation. This is a good option if you plan to finance equipment for a short period of time, or if you plan to replace the equipment with upgraded technology at the end of the lease period. This is the more popular lease option among businesses.

Leasing brings benefits
The many benefits of leasing office technology make it very difficult to turn down. Here are just some of the benefits that come along with leasing devices:

– Leases are easy to qualify for, making them a great choice for small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) with limited capital
– Leases can often be secured without a sizable down payment or none at all
– Leasing allows you to move on and upgrade your equipment when you need to, preventing you from owning outdated technology
– Leases come with a low, predictable, monthly cost, one that typically comes with maintenance included as a part of the leasing agreement

Leasing is an extremely popular option among businesses today for these very reasons. It’s likely that one of these benefits will stand out to your organization. For more information on leasing office technology and help deciding whether it’s the right option for your company, contact Infomax Office Systems today.

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Getting the Most Out of SMB Cloud Storage

As Internet speeds get faster and data storage gets smaller and cheaper, storage in the cloud is opening new doors for small- and mid-sized businesses (SMBs). However, the number of doors available to your SMB depends on how you utilize this technology. It’s clearly more than a trend, so how can your SMB get the most out of cloud storage?

Understand Your Purpose — Having a clear picture of your goals will help guide your cloud strategy.
●    Sync and Share — If your goal is to connect people, the cloud is the perfect setting. File sharing and collaboration is a common offering, enabling users to add comments and edit a document simultaneously. User access is provided through a web portal or mobile application, with selective syncing for designated files and devices.
●    Backup — Turn to the cloud to protect, retain, and eventually restore your data. Note that in a sync-and-share environment, a user could inadvertently delete important files, so a distinct solution is needed for backup—one that preserves files separately from their everyday usage.
●    Archive — Cloud storage can be a good solution when saving documents for regulatory compliance or historical reference. It can also work as a form of content distribution, for example, a library of images, logos, and other media.

Watch Your Costs — Cloud storage has tremendous scalability and low cost per unit of storage. However, be sure to keep an eye out for hidden costs, such as fees for data transfers, metadata functions, and bandwidth.

Look for Administrative Controls — Make sure you have administrative control and visibility of your cloud storage. Controls may include monitoring usage, setting user permissions, controlling file sharing, transferring files, and even remotely wiping devices. Protecting your data is particularly important during employee turnover or when sharing with external partners.

Be BYOD (Bring Your Own Device)-Friendly — For employees to use cloud storage, it has to be convenient and accessible. Usually this is achieved through apps on personal mobile devices or via the web on a laptop. Look for strong security features paired with maximum flexibility for users.

Cloud storage is an exciting and cost-effective opportunity for businesses to become more agile, improve collaboration, and manage large volumes of data. To get the most out of your cloud storage, know your goals, watch your costs, demand robust administrative controls, and be device-agnostic. For help developing your cloud storage strategy, contact Infomax Office Systems today.