Beyond Paperless: The Night Audit, Part 1 outlined the reasons, costs and payback period for implementing a paperless night audit process in the hotel back office. Now that you know the benefits of a paperless night audit and a paperless back office, let’s look at the nuts and bolts of paper’s replacement: a document management system.
Saving your hotel and/or management group time and money
Here are a few benefits and controls, not only from the lens of a hotel, but also from that of a management/ownership group:
Stop spending time renaming files. A report from Opera exports as trial_balance928271, while a report from Choice Advantage comes out as report.pdf. A document management system will automatically standardize the naming conventions – so when you need to pull a set of reports, you’re pulling one report name, rather than multiples.
Retention and Destruction
A document management system lets you setup retention and destruction rules so that each report is kept only for the amount of time required (e.g. 3 years, 7 years, etc.) – that translates into making external and internal audits easier.
Don’t print just to sign a report – and then scan to store it away again. A document management system lets you do this “paperlessly” without having to go through much effort. A document management system also allows you to comment directly on a report (think AR or Guest Ledger Reports). Linking this area with Workflow and Document Level security (as per below) makes sure that the due diligence and tasks that have to be performed on these reports are actioned in a timely manner.
Workflow and Document Level Security
Think about this area like the role of a mailman. The mailman delivers the mail that you’re entitled to. Workflow and document level security operate in the same way. Workflow routes the mail to the right people on your staff and provides the steps necessary to conduct their review. Document level security ensures that the staff only see the reports that they need to see.
Reports for multiple properties can now be housed inside one document management system. When we spoke about “On-Demand” and Internal Audits – this is where the big value comes from. When your reports are centralized, follow a standard taxonomy and are accessible by PC, Tablet and/or Smartphone, pulling up a single, group or batch of reports can be done in seconds. How quick is it? As quick as you can log in!
With a document management system, printing & maintenance can be reduced and/or eliminated. We proved that in Part 1. When you have all of the above benefits, you now get into labor savings because of the efficiency gains. For a night audit, these gains come as early as day 1.
Compliance and Secure Access
SOC Compliance is a big deal. Reputability in the document management system you’re using is also a big deal. If you’re considering a document management system, make sure you take these areas seriously. When a document management system meets those criteria, and you can set up document level security, you’re building a secure compound where your reports can be stored safely.
myDigitalOffice enables hospitality groups to gain efficiencies and sustainable savings in their back office, through key areas in dashboard reporting, document management solutions, and streamlined accounts payable processes.Where does the Paperless Night Audit fit in? That’s our favorite one b/c saving paper, means saving the environment.
And when you talk about sustainability – everyone wins.8