News Feature | September 16, 2015

Workers Waste 6 Hours On Paper Document Searches Weekly

Katie Wike

By Katie Wike, contributing writer

Medical Records Dumping Case

According to a recent survey, some workers use six or more hours of their time each week searching for paper documents.

Paper-based work environments lead to workers losing six or more hours searching for documents every week, according to a survey from Software Advice. Interestingly, those who work in digitally-based environments wasted virtually no time searching for documents.

The survey notes that 30 percent of respondents said they spend less than 10 minutes per day searching for documents, while 19 percent spend 30 minutes, 21 percent spend an hour, 15 percent spend two hours, 9 percent spend three to four hours and 6 percent spend 5-6 hours per day searching.

Workers who use digital management systems reported spending very little time searching for documents. When asked what the effect of DMS on finding documents would be, nearly half of those surveyed said it would make the process significantly easier. Forty-three percent said it would be somewhat easier, 8 percent claimed it would be more difficult and 1 percent said it would be significantly more difficult.

Fierce Content Management reports that creating reports from paper documents also contributes to wasted time in the workplace. Employees reported spending about 1.6 hours per day, or more than eight hours a week, building reports from information contained in paper documents.

“All told, creating paper-based reports from information in other paper documents is very time-consuming. One challenge respondents note is that in traditional offices, employees may need to check several different files to verify that the data they're using is the most accurate and current. This leads to a lot of paper shuffling, as well as decreased productivity,” said researchers.