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Almost half of UK businesses still use a physical paper filing system

With the use of technology and artificial intelligence (AI) services continuing to change the way we carry out work and live our everyday lives, businesses are still not prepared to utilise this technology in a way that benefits them, according to recent research carried out by Crown Records Management.

The research found that almost half (49 per cent) of UK businesses are still operating a physical paper filing system, despite half (48 per cent) of businesses recognising that it is difficult to find what they need quickly and 46 per cent struggling to find the physical space to store the files.

This could have an impact on the future of these businesses with 61 per cent of Brits saying they are concerned about how companies store their personal information, with over four million choosing not to work with companies that only work with paper files and physical documentation, due to security concerns.

Tim Rushent, Director of Digital at Crown Records Management, commented: “This recent research outlines the issues that businesses are having when looking to store their data and highlights a nervousness of those businesses to store this data online, or on the cloud. Over the past few years, we have seen an explosion in how data is created; stored and used, which can be a scary prospect to many business owners.”

Despite concerns around paper documentation, over a third (34 per cent) of Brits admitted they don’t have any understanding of what happens when data is saved to the cloud, even though six in 10 businesses are currently storing customer data in this way. While the cloud was previously considered a suitable means of storage, this may become an issue as a result of rapid technological development, with concerns that the traditional cloud infrastructure was not designed to support large-scale artificial intelligence.

When comparing different industries, the research revealed that the finance sector is having the most issues with data storage with almost nine in 10 businesses expressing their challenges, followed by 77 per cent of IT and telecoms businesses and 76 per cent of manufacturing and utilities companies.

When asked about using an online records management tool, a third (31 per cent) of UK business owners shared that they had never used one, with 37 per cent claiming it was too expensive, 16 per cent saying they worried about security and more than 12 per cent shared concerns around using the systems. Interestingly, almost four in 10 (37 per cent) claim that there is no particular reason why they do not use online records management at present, which highlights the need for businesses to find out more about how this could transform business operations.

Crown Records Management is running a webinar on the 19th, 20th and 23rd October ‘The biggest problems your business is facing with data storage!’, to register for the event click here.

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