If you have a lot of documents that you need to digitize on an ongoing basis at your office, you generally have two options in terms of equipment: dedicated scanners, or multifunction devices. There are pros and cons to both.
A dedicated scanner is really best option if you have a lot of documents that you need to scan on a routine basis. They are really good at doing the one function that they are designed: scanning. Both the NeatDesk and the Fujitsu ScanSnap are good quality scanners. The NeatDesk comes with software called NeatWorks that helps you manage your documents into a digital file cabinet. The Fujitsu ScanSnap comes with software that lets you scan directly to other formats like Evernote. If you like the ScanSnap but want the functionality of NeatDesk, you can also purchase the NeatWorks software separately and use that to help organize your documents.
Many offices already have a multifunction device — printer, copy machine, fax, and scanner all rolled into one machine. The nice thing about this is you probably already have it, so there is no additional hardware cost. It’s also one less machine to take up space in your office. These are a great option if you have relatively light scanning needs. Typically multifunction devices aren’t really that great at scanning large quantities of documents. Even if you have one that has an automatic document feeder, they are usually very slow compared to a dedicated scanner. If you’ve got a lot of documents that you’re trying to scan, it’s likely that the experience of using your multifunction device will be pretty unsatisfying.
Whether a dedicated scanner or a multifunction device is the ideal option for you will depend your needs. Consider how much you scan, and how often, as well as other issues like machine maintenance and whether you have the space in your office for additional machines.
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