The standard method for document storage is to physically archive paper documents. It is common practice for businesses that need to maintain a paper trail of non-mission-critical documents.

It is a cheap alternative, however it has major drawbacks. One of the most significant concerns is the high chance of deterioration in the paper files. As time passes, fungi rodents and other species can destroy the files. The paper fibers can also be damaged if the storage area is humid or dry. This is why it’s so important to follow a file organizational plan and follow an uncompromising “hygiene” routine in order to keep these dangers at in check.

Another problem with physical storage is that employees need to manually interact with the documents and files. This could result in 7.5% of files not being properly filed and 1/5 of them getting lost. If you consider that every search and retrieval of a paper file could take as long as 25 hours, this can be extremely costly for businesses.

It is crucial to store paper archives in a secure place to avoid floods and fires. This can be costly and eat up office space that could be used for something else. Also, paper documents aren’t usually backed up and could be lost in the event of a disaster or theft. Electronic document management systems, on the other hand, are backed up into fail-safe archives which cannot be accessed by a thief and destroyed by natural catastrophes.

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