Trends and technologies in document management are evolving with rapid speed. Instant access to files, tools for collaboration, retention compliance, security measures and software compatibility are just a few factors affecting businesses across a variety of industries. To keep afloat in our fast-paced business marketplace, you should strongly consider how your company can remain relevant and successful by implementing the right solutions and tools for your industry.
Here is an overview for how each of the healthcare, legal and financial services industries incorporate various solutions for a complete information management strategy…
Healthcare is one of the country’s largest industries. In a Commonwealth Fund supported study researchers compared medical costs across several countries. It was found that in the U.S. administrative costs for healthcare facilities account for nearly 25% of their total expenses. Additionally, facilities like hospitals, nursing homes, rehab facilities, doctor’s offices and pharmacies are heavily controlled by multiple regulatory bodies. The result is pressure for those in the industry to conform to the standards and rules set forth by these overseeing organizations; some of which require major changes in the creation, management and retention of documentation. Of course, this is compounded even further by the vulnerability of patient privacy and actions required to prevent threats to sensitive information.
Although an array of rules and laws surround the industry, HIPAA in particular concentrates on protecting the privacy of a patient’s individually identifiable health information. Whether it’s in transit or held by a provider, any information via e-mail, fax, paper, electronic file, etc. is subject to HIPPA laws. HIPAA undoubtedly challenges the way facilities handle patient information, both in day-to-day operations and long-term data management. Not only does HIPAA change data security and patient confidentiality practices, but it may also call for modifications in the storage and retention of documentation, depending on the situation.
Healthcare organizations rely on a variety of document management solutions to operate in compliance with HIPAA. Document conversion turns existing paper-based documentation into easily stored and searchable, yet safe-guarded electronic files. Data capture collects and processes physical copies of patient information into an electronic health record for secure keeping.
By using multiple document management solutions together and devising an indexing strategy, you can protect patient privacy, reduce errors and omissions, as well as streamline the day-to-day tasks. The settings, tools and features within these systems drastically reduce the chance of information loss or violation of privacy. Don’t be mistaken–these tools and features don’t just help regulate the clinical aspects of healthcare, but they assist in streamlining the logistical duties such as billing, HR and other administrative actions.
Considering the amount of time attorneys spend on paperwork and research, it should come as no surprise the legal industry is highly dependent on information in paper format. According to studies conducted by The American Bar Association, a single attorney can use upwards of 100,000 sheets of paper per year. This includes everything from client paperwork and court documents, case studies and depositions to contracts and briefs among many other document types.
In addition to the challenges associated with a heavily paper-based environment, legal professionals value timeliness and privacy, as well as available means to collaborate with colleagues. Working cases in a timely manner, upholding client privacy, while enabling collaboration between colleagues is difficult to balance. Legal professionals need highly secure electronic systems that streamline paperwork and workflows, yet safeguard sensitive information. This is where document management solutions play a key role.
Document conversion and data capture operates at the foundation for organizing the paperwork legal professionals use and generate from day to day. These solutions convert older documentation into electronic files, eliminating the need for hard copies. This is beneficial because of the frequency in which legal professionals require quick access to archived information. Implementing OCR indexes according to the firm’s unique requirements is the finishing product that produces easily searchable documents—both new and old—making those long working hours more efficient and productive. All of these tools sync with case management software for literally no downtime or learning curve.
With the right all-inclusive strategy of document management solutions, every user has a well-organized, concise electronic system with instant access to information and data. Clients know their case is being worked in a timely manner with their privacy held in high regard. These smart, custom technologies change the way paper is generated, managed and maintained, all of which increase compliance and productivity while upholding the integrity of the firm and their clients.
Financial Services Industry
The financial services industry is largely dependent on paper. Although electronic solutions provide some relief from paper dependency, research compiled by American Banker states that banks and other financial businesses generate and send nearly 50 billion pieces of mail to customers each year. From applications and contracts, records and appraisals to statements and transaction confirmations, there is a great deal of data to maintain. This makes financial document management a challenge to say the least. It’s also a heavily regulated industry that experiences fluctuating ups and downs. This is why it’s so important for financial services to stay on top of what is in their control—maintaining customer data, transaction records and financial privacy.
It’s not only the sensitive, private nature of the industry, but the sheer volume of daily transactions coming in and going out that drives the need for new ways to optimize processes that ensure accuracy, safety and security. Although IT plays a major role in the banking industry because of the nature of the work, most communications are still largely paper-based. Of equal importance is being compliant with financial regulations that control the industry, as well as organization-specific requirements. Without methods to optimize processes, information is stored in less secure, outdated systems with limited accessibility to users.
An increasing number of banks, credit unions, credit card companies and other financial institutions are utilizing a variety of customized data management solutions. These include techniques like data entry, digital imaging, and indexing solutions integrated with their existing systems and software. When paired together, these strategies automate most of the daily processes and transactions conducted by financial institutions. That allows for more efficient allocation of internal resources as well.
The advantages aren’t just experienced by the organization, but extended to customers who benefit from better service and faster access to real-time data. Enhanced security, quicker processing times and guaranteed accuracy are some of the many benefits of electronic data management systems in the financial services industry.
Trust the industry experts
Whether you oversee operations at a hospital, run a law firm or manage a credit union, chances are digitization, cloud-technologies and other methods have been offered up as a solution to your document management challenges. Let ILM show you how our experience and wide range of custom solutions help us provide the organization and efficiency your business requires to stay relevant and maintain a competitive edge. Contact ILM today to get started with us for free!