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How to implement a Digital Mailroom

how to implement a mailroom

Many businesses are overwhelmed by high volumes of inbound mail, whether that be physical paper documentation, or digital such as customer enquiries, complaints, application forms, invoices, statements or payments. 

Manual processes are time consuming, labour intensive and often subject to human error, prolonging the period in which data can become accessible and slowing productivity. Customers’ expectations are higher than ever when it comes to the quality of the experience, hence the growing need to provide a more seamless, time-efficient, personalised service. Businesses that can’t keep up with these demands risk leaving customers disappointed. 

One way of increasing efficiency is by implementing a digital mailroom. In this article we’ll outline what a digital mailroom is and how to implement one into your business to help provide the standard and speed of service your customers are looking for. 

What is a digital mailroom?

A digital mailroom transforms and streamlines inbound mail by offering automated mail sortation, opening, scanning, indexing and data capturing. 

Data is automatically identified and turned into dynamic, useful information that helps to enhance the customer journey. With the implementation of a digital mailroom, pre-existing digital documents are transformed and paper-based documentation becomes fully digitised. 

All documentation can be hosted on a secure, fully searchable online portal, providing business clients with complete visibility of all images and instant access 24/7 from anywhere.

automated digital mailroom

What are the benefits of implementing a digital mailroom?

There are numerous benefits to implementing a digital mailroom, whether you’re a small or medium-to-large business.

Speeds up response time

With tracking and easy retrieval, you can respond to priorities and customer needs more readily. This improves the speed at which any complaints or customer feedback is responded to and dealt with.

Improved accuracy

Having an automated digital mailroom solution is less susceptible to inaccuracies caused by human error. Fewer mistakes means faster processing and reduced costs to your business. In fact, data shows that automated digital mailrooms are 99.9% accurate.

Reduced costs

Operating at over 90% levels of automation and 99.9% levels of accuracy, means digital mailroom solutions can help businesses deliver an average saving of 30% compared to in-house costs.

Better visibility and control

A digital mailroom solution transforms pre-existing digital documentation onto a secure, fully searchable online portal that can be accessed instantly, 24/7. It provides your business employees with everything they need at their fingertips.

Better use of resources

Automation frees up resources and space, meaning you have more staff, money and time available to spend on individual employee’s expertise and scaling up your business.

Fully-flexible and fully-scalable

Automated digital mailroom solutions can accommodate large volumes of load bear, meaning they can be scaled up or scaled down to suit any business size and support you as you grow.

digital mailrooms

Choosing between an in-house and outsourced digital mailroom solution

When setting up a digital mailroom, businesses must decide whether to handle it internally or outsource it. Each option has its pros and cons.

In-house solutions can sometimes offer more control and flexibility. Businesses can customise workflows and integrate the digital mailroom with existing systems. However, they require upfront investment in technology, infrastructure and staff training. Outsourced solutions, on the other hand, provide convenience and scalability. Businesses can focus on core operations while external providers manage the mailroom functions. Although they involve ongoing service fees, they eliminate the need for capital expenditure and resource allocation for mailroom management.

In-house solutions demand organisations to acquire and maintain expertise in mailroom management and technology. This includes staying updated on advancements in digital mailroom software and hardware. On the other hand, outsourced solutions leverage the expertise and technology of third-party providers.

In-house solutions may struggle to handle fluctuations in mail volume and workload. Outsourced solutions offer scalability, allowing businesses to adjust service levels based on demand without extra costs.

How to deploy a digital mailroom solution

In the past, the majority of businesses deploying digital mailrooms were large organisations looking to manage mail at multiple sites. Now, they are being used in hybrid work environments for their ability to remove locational constraints. 

Implementing a digital mailroom requires careful planning and execution to ensure its effectiveness and seamless integration into your organisation’s operations. So what are the steps to implement a digital mailroom?

Ideation

Begin by conducting a thorough assessment of your current mail handling processes, including how mail is received, sorted, processed and distributed. Identify inefficiencies, pain points, and areas for improvement. What areas are proving to be problematic or could benefit from improvement?  With this in mind, plan routes for redirections, create point by point pathways to guarantee efficient handling of mail. Prepare your Customer Relationship Management system (CRM) to be able to automate mail being indexed. 

Outline the goals you want to achieve with a digital mailroom, whether that is faster mail processing, improved efficiency, or better customer service. Set specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) objectives for implementing the digital mailroom.

Implementation

  1. Consider how mail is delivered and routed to a centralised location where checks can be carried out and all mail can be prepped for digital transformation.
  2. Documents then need to be scanned and relevant data collected. This information is cross-referenced with your CRM database to index your mail automatically.
  3. Digital mailroom software encrypts mail and restricts access (such as 2FA), and then routes it to the appropriate recipients.
  4. Once information has been digitally transformed it can be redirected to employee workflows, 
  5. Original mail can be returned or destroyed. Digital images of mail can be stored securely with an automatic retention schedule applied.
 
Alongside the implementation of a digital mailroom, you should also provide comprehensive training to all staff members involved in the mail handling process, including mailroom staff, administrative assistants, department heads and other relevant stakeholders. Ensure they are proficient in using the new technology and adhering to the new workflow. Communicate the changes to all staff members and provide additional training or support as necessary.

Improvement

Once implemented, regularly measure the effectiveness using your predetermined key performance indicators (KPIs) and analyse areas where it could be further improved to increase efficiency. It can also be useful to solicit feedback from users and stakeholders, using it to refine the system as needed.

What other areas of your business could you look at expanding digital mailroom solutions to? How might you successfully integrate them across different departments or locations?

Implementing a digital mailroom is an ongoing process of continuous improvement. Regularly review and refine your processes based on feedback, changes in business needs and advancements in technology. Stay updated on industry trends and best practices to ensure your digital mailroom remains efficient and effective.

How Parseq helped global leader deploy a digital mailroom

One of our clients is a global leader in fintech and payments. They required a comprehensive digital mailroom solution whereby all inbound mail could be managed in an automated environment.

We acted as the client’s first point mailroom which involves the collection, opening, separation, scanning and indexing of all of their contact centre mail, payments, costing vouchers and copy statements. Through several managed PO boxes, we collected all mail items on the client’s behalf.

We then scanned, validated and captured data from all documents received, utilising the latest OCR and ICR technology and combining this with an effective exceptions handling process. All documents were presented into several different queues depending on the type of correspondence and are indexed by a unique identifier.

The data output was uploaded to our secure online portal where the relevant scanned items could be accessed by the client’s employees. The original documents were then securely destroyed.

Our client now has access to validated data and images for onward processing by their ERP system within two days of mail receipt. This improved their working environment and eliminated many of the routine administrative tasks undertaken by the head office.

Our digital mailroom solution has drastically improved the client’s operational efficiency, increased the speed of data visibility and provided 24/7 accessibility, enabling them to manage their customer experience effectively.

Interested in deploying a digital mailroom solution across your business?

Want to find out more about implementing a digital mailroom? We would be happy to discuss your organisation’s mailroom management challenges and how Parseq’s solutions could help automate that process.

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