What does this actually mean for the Glover Stanbury office? A whole room was full of filing cabinets – 13 of them to be exact. They have all gone, and the room is now empty – it is surplus to requirement and will in fact be let out to generate income. The other cabinets were removed from various other rooms, making them look bigger and more spacious.
What has Happened to the Paper that was Once in All of These?
Having had the Docusoft document management system in place for over 7 years, Glover Stanbury has significantly enhanced their methods of working, which have changed from the “old” paper based ones to electronic working papers and scanned files.
Just some of the papers have been moved into storage, replacing old files that had been destroyed. Glover Stanbury chose not to back scan all their records when moving to the document management solution. The 13 cabinets held the last 3 years files at any one time. In the old paper based systems when a new file with the latest year was added to the cabinet the oldest one was moved to a storage room. As no more files were being created to add to the cabinets, there came a time when all the old files could be moved out.
With 4 drawers per cabinet and 25 cabinets, that is 100 drawers that would have been full up whereas it is all now in electronic format inside the document management system. There were nearly 190,000 documents in the system at the last time of checking. A document could be one sheet of paper e.g. a letter or email, or one document could be the all of the scanned and/or electronic working papers, nominal printouts, final accounts, software nominal printouts, PDF files, etc., for a complete year of accounts working papers. One document could also be a tax return or several tax returns bundled together as one document. A conservative estimate of the number of papers stored in the document management system would be in excess of 1 million sheets of paper!
Pages per cabinet will vary, but one estimate is 36,000 pages per 4 drawer cabinet. 36,000 * 25 is 900,000 so the estimate is probably not wildly out!
So how much space could be freed up if all your filing cabinets and paper files were removed?