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After the home office comes the cleanup

Six weeks of improvisation in the home office could cost companies nine million man-days of cleanup and trackable documentation, according to Optimal Systems.
E-3 Magazine
August 25, 2020
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[shutterstock.com: 1310460281, Followtheflow]
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This text has been automatically translated from German to English.

Digitization and remote work have gained dramatic acceptance: According to a recent Bitkom study, nine million employees worked from home for the first time in the first quarter of 2020.

The sheer number suggests that not everyone was prepared: Most companies have been transitioning to cloud services. This could mean considerable additional work for the companies: after six weeks of improvised home work, an estimated nine million man-days for searching, filing and correctly archiving the files processed in the home office.

Setting up appropriate solutions takes time: those who don't have it often have a problem. Maybe not immediately:

"I would suspect that where filing and document management is lacking, semi-legal means, i.e. free cloud services, have been used to keep it moving forward"

says Norbert Gronau, Professor at the Department of Information Systems, Processes and Systems at the University of Potsdam.

"We're talking about about a million and a half companies that rely on ad hoc solutions like this - or worse, email documents back and forth to each other. So you might as well post them in the marketplace."

To create a traceable document flow manually again afterwards - with the return to the daily office routine - could impose additional burdens.

"Nine million workers who had to switch to home offices on short notice worked 270 million man-days in six weeks"

calculates Sven Kaiser, Marketing Manager at Optimal Systems.

"Ten percent of this time spent on rework would be equivalent to 216 million man-hours. Even if only one-third of the employees who spontaneously moved to the home office actually improvised, that would still be nearly nine million man-days or 72 million man-hours - a gigantic cost burden compared to the investment in an ECM."

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