Each year, businesses accumulate enormous amounts of documents and records, which require ongoing storage and management throughout their entire lifecycle. Depending on the industry, retention periods can range from five years or more, making the need for more space a growing concern for many organizations.
However, finding secure storage space within the workplace isn’t always possible. It’s also very costly and time-consuming to store documents in-house. A better solution is storing sensitive documents in a secure offsite records facility, so your organization can focus on revenue-generating activities while enhancing information security.
To help you determine if offsite storage is right for your business, here are answers to frequently asked records management questions.
Offsite Records Storage Frequently Asked Questions
What is the purpose of offsite storage?
The main goal of offsite record storage is to relocate vital files and documents from vulnerable workplace storage rooms and self-storage units into a secure facility. Here information can be indexed, stored and managed by authorized and trained professionals throughout its entire lifecycle.
Offsite record storage is also a cost-effective, long-term solution that protects information from theft, security breaches and natural disasters, such as fire or flooding.
What are the benefits of using records storage facilities?
There are many benefits of choosing secure document storage for sensitive data:
- Reallocates costly office real estate to be used for revenue-generating activities.
- Promotes employee productivity by ensuring fast and easy access to information.
- Ensures compliance with privacy laws as it pertains to the management and accessibility of data.
- Aids in the tracking of retention periods and the destruction of records to free up inventory space.
- Security measures protect business assets from theft, environmental damage, loss or unauthorized access.
Read What is a Records Storage Facility to learn more benefits.
How do offsite storage services work?
When you partner with an offsite document storage provider, the entire process of storing and managing your files is handled by trained professionals. The provider will arrange secure transportation of your business records to an offsite storage facility where your information will be indexed and stored using a barcode system to make it easier to search, locate and request files. When you need access to information, it can be scanned and emailed within a few hours or physical documents can be delivered to your site.
What types of files should I store?
Offsite document storage keeps sensitive data secure, so it’s an ideal solution for organizations that need to protect and store confidential information. This can include workplace data, such as company records, customer and patient information, financial and legal documents, employee information and other sensitive files. Offsite storage is suitable for paper documents, but also electronic records, tapes and other media.
Read How Do You Protect Confidential Information in the Workplace? to learn how to keep sensitive records secure.
How much does offsite document storage cost?
Using office space to store confidential paper documents or a self-storage unit is expensive and not always easy to come by. You must also factor in ongoing costs, including employee labour, rent, document storage racks and file boxes.
A more cost-effective solution is working with a professional records management service. For only a few dollars per box each year, you can store your documents and media in a climate controlled location with 24/7 surveillance and strict security protocols. You only pay for the file storage space you use, making offsite storage more affordable over time.
Read Cost Comparison of Document Storage Methods for more information document storage solutions.
How secure is a records storage facility?
Unlike using office space or self-storage facilities to store files, offsite records storage facilities have 24/7 surveillance and follow strict security protocols to protect information from breaches and theft. Only authorized personnel have access to records, and all employees receive regular training to uphold data protection regulations. Proper climate control, fire protection and pest control measures are also in place to prevent damage or loss of files in secure storage.
How do I gain access to records in offsite storage?
When you need access to company documents, offsite storage facilities offer various ways of retrieval. If you need physical documents, files or boxes can be requested online from the storage facility and delivered to your business.
However, a more efficient way to access your records is by working with an offsite storage provider that offers scan-on-demand services. With this form of file retrieval, your employees can contact the company to request documents to be scanned and emailed to them within hours.
Read How to Save Money, Maximize Space and Stay Compliant to learn more about scan-on-demand.
How are business records stored and managed?
Once files are indexed and stored using a barcode system, your company will have access to an online records management system. Authorized employees will be able to access the system to centrally manage and control assets in secure storage, as well as order files, run inventory reports and more.
Do professional document storage services manage regulatory compliance?
Keeping confidential documents in an offsite facility keeps your business compliant with privacy laws as it pertains to the management and accessibility of data. When information reaches the end of its retention timeframe, authorized personnel can easily identify which paper documents and media have reached expiration and require destruction or shredding.
All files and boxes are also indexed and scanned every step of the way to ensure a secure chain of custody and ongoing compliance.
Read Why is it Important for Businesses to Store Information? to learn more about the importance of records and information management.
Choose Blue Pencil for Secure Offsite Document Storage
At Blue-Pencil, we provide long-term document storage for sensitive records so you can focus on your business knowing that your information is protected.
When you choose our records management service, you’ll get the peace of mind that your critical documents are stored in a safe, climate controlled and compliant facility to ensure a secure chain of custody. Our document management services also ensure that your records are managed throughout their entire lifecycle by authorized and trained professionals.
When you need access to vital documents in your inventory, retrieval is one click away. Physical documents and file boxes can be delivered to your location, or records can be scanned and sent electronically within hours to keep your confidential information close at hand. With pricing as low as a few dollars per file box each year, our offsite records storage services are an affordable long-term solution for businesses of all sizes.
To learn more about storing your records offsite with Blue-Pencil or to inquire about our information management solutions, get in contact with us for a free quote. Our customer service team is also available to discuss your storage needs and answer any questions that your organization may have.