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Going Digital: An In-Depth Guide to Effective Document Scanning

While many people perceive document scanning as a straightforward task, a closer examination shows that obtaining optimal results involves more than just connecting a flatbed scanner to your laptop. The scanning process requires various decisions, such as determining the appropriate equipment size, the dimensions of the document to be scanned, and the desired final file size. It is the combination of these factors, along with the quality control process, that makes scanning a somewhat more intricate process than you might expect.

What is Document Scanning?

Document scanning is the process of converting physical records and files into digital formats. This transformative process reduces the need for filing cabinets, filing rooms, and warehouses filled with paper documents, creating easily accessible and storable electronic libraries.

Can I Do It Myself?

While single scans or small batches may be manageable, their quality and size are limited by your scanner’s capabilities, your understanding of file size and quality, and the time available beyond your primary workload. Utilizing a professional scanning service offers numerous benefits.

Benefits of Document Scanning

  • Space: By replacing paper documents with digital files, scanning frees up prime office real estate that was once occupied by filing cabinets. Thousands of files can now be stored on a single server.
  • Preservation: Scanning historical documents halts the aging process, preserving their quality and preventing potential deterioration, damage, or loss.
  • Security: Scanned documents can be encrypted, password-protected, and securely stored in the cloud. Access can be restricted, and file usage can be tracked, enhancing security compared to paper documents.
  • Sharing: Digital documents facilitate effective collaboration within your team and with other businesses. Quick and easy sharing eliminates the need to pass around physical copies.
  • Compliance: Scanning simplifies legal obligations, as digital files can be organized, indexed, and produced quickly for compliance purposes.
  • Recovery: Scanned documents offer enhanced disaster recovery compared to vulnerable paper documents. Digital files can be backed up and protected electronically.
  • Green: Scanning is an environmentally friendly choice that reduces paper usage, landfill waste, and tree consumption, contributing to Earth’s protection.

What a Professional Scanning Service Can Offer

If you’re considering the transition to digital through document scanning, deciding between doing it yourself and using a professional scanning service is crucial. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Large Format & Blueprints: Professional scanning services can handle large documents that don’t fit on standard flatbed scanners while maintaining high quality.
  • Best DPI: Dots per inch (DPI) measure the number of pixels the scanner associates with one inch of the document. Higher DPI results in a higher-quality image.
  • Saving Time: Scanning high DPI images requires significant time and effort. The cost of using a professional scanning service may offset the time investment.
  • The Right File and Image Size: Scanning services can recommend the optimal balance between DPI for image resolution and file size measured in bytes, influencing storage and file purpose.
  • Quality Control: The experts not only have the ability to scan your documents correctly, but they also implement strict quality control processes throughout each scanning project so you get the highest-quality images.

Records Management Center: Your Scanning Solution

Serving the Central Savannah River area, Records Management Center (RMC) offers a range of high-quality scanning services. From large-format documents to medical records and scan-on-demand, we handle jobs of all sizes and types. For inquiries or to get your job completed efficiently, call us at 706-724-7982 or complete the form on this page.