I was recently speaking with one our customers who is converting their older documents from microfiche to OnBase because the microfiche are quickly deteriorating. Kudos to them for having gotten the documents into microfiche in the first place – that’s better than paper!
However, does it take the imminent risk of losing information to motivate higher education to become better stewards of its institution’s valuable information? Now, I certainly would hope not, but I’m starting to think that might be the case to spur them to have, at a minimum, images of critical documents strategically stored electronically and backed-up in multiple locations.
Once those documents are digital, the customer I mentioned above will have instant access…and backups…and security around critical data…and document retention policies. They won’t have to keep those microfiche readers alive with parts they bought from eBay or explain to young, new employees what microfiche even is or why it’s worth saving. (I imagine the conversation would parallel the one I had with my kids about how cutting edge I felt when I got an 8-track player. But, I digress…)
And there is hard ROI from this process. Eliminate storage fees. Eliminate temporary employees. Have the information that you need when you need it, readily accessible thanks to a real-time integration with your ERP system. Answer questions correctly the first time. Sail through accreditations and audits. Make faster admit decisions. Check data entered against original documents easily. Award transfer credit before a student registers for classes they don’t need. Oh, I could go on and on.
Now, if we’re hoarding thousands of documents in storage vaults just so we can say that we have them, then this blog is a moot point. But, if we really need the information that’s on those documents then we need to escalate the issue to the “right” people and get some technology funded.
There are a lot of priorities for an institution and funding is declining. So, for us, making a case for an investment might be what is getting in our way. We have to show return. We have to show value.
And, we can.
Hyland is your partner to get this problem solved on your campus. We’ll do a discovery and our higher education team will help you craft a compelling case so you can make a difference at your institution. So call us and let’s solve very real higher ed problems by leveraging the work you’ve already done and extending the value of the investments you’ve already made. Except the 8-track players and microfiche – it’s time for those to go.