Microfiche was once used to store historical documents because the material is designed to be durable and to retain image quality over periods as long as 500 years. But many are now considering scanning their microfiche documents and storing their historical data within a digital record-keeping system. In this latest post, we’ll review the value of microfiche scanning services and explain how such services can benefit your organization for the years ahead.
Why Organizations Are Now Leaving Microfiche Behind
While microfiche has been effective in maintaining image clarity over centuries, organizations are now leaving the storage material behind and choosing other record keeping options. But why are organizations making this change now? Let’s look at the challenges of working with microfiche.
Microfiche is Hard to Store
While microfiche is highly durable and can last for several decades, it must be stored in the optimal environment. For example, the material is immensely vulnerable to temperature changes, and so microfiche files must be stored in a temperature-controlled and humidity-controlled room. Few companies can achieve this level of control within their storage areas, and this can lead to damage of the microfiche material.
Image Quality Issues Can Arise
Because microfiche can be delicate, and many organizations don’t take care when copying from the original film, the film quality can be difficult to read. In some cases, for example, images are filmed on a white background, and this can make it difficult to read the completed document and decipher the location of the document edges.
Microfiche Has a Long Retrieval Time
The time it takes to retrieve information from microfiche can make the film challenging to work with for team members. Document retrieval requires you to be in close physical proximity to the material. Using the document is also difficult as you may be required to review 50 or more pages to find a keyword or key passage within the material.
Digital Scanning of Microfiche is the Future
It’s clear that microfiche once held great value for its storage quality and durability, but we’re now moving to an era in which digital storage is the key to success for many types of organization, from medical manufacturers to credit unions. Scanning your microfiche content to a digital device holds many advantages, so let’s explore just a few of the many benefits provided.
Easy Data Retrieval
As we’ve mentioned, one of the key challenges in working with microfiche has been the time it takes to retrieve data from within the film. It’s part of the reason why so many organizations are now choosing digital scanning services. By scanning your microfiche documents, you can create a digital archive of your stored content. This content can then be queried through keyword analysis, and passages can be found in seconds from a network computer. The process is more straightforward and more direct than working with complex microfiche film.
The storage of digital data is now more affordable than ever before as technology moves forward and companies find new ways to consolidate large amounts of data into small pieces. Rather than having to dedicate an area of your organization’s building to a controlled environment for microfiche storage, you can now store your data securely in a remote location where only you and other approved users have access.
Conversion Costs Are Quickly Recovered
While it costs money to convert your microfiche data to digital content, you can quickly recover this investment by reducing your work team’s data retrieval times and improving productivity throughout the organization.
Little Training Required
When working with microfiche, you might have to train team members on how to work with the film and find the information they require. Here’s where digital storage systems have another clear advantage. You don’t have to train your team to work with the storage system. The system will be similar to your current online repositories, and so your team is likely familiar with how to find information and can begin using their digital storage system immediately.
Turn to Imaging Office Systems for Guidance on Digital Conversion of Microfiche
When searching for a company with microfiche scanning service, ensure you choose a partner that has many years of experience in this complex process. Our team at Imaging Office Systems has helped companies throughout the region simplify the conversion process and create the ideal digital storage catalog for their documents. We’re committed to streamlining productivity and exceptional digital security.
To discover more about our conversion work, please contact us today for a consultation.