Document Archiving: An Essential Building Block for Digitalizing Business Processes

It takes an archive to form the foundation for digitized, document-intensive business processes. Once established, the archive turns into a company-wide knowledge hub and simplifies location-independent collaboration, making it more flexible and easier to manage.

Max. Reading time 7min

The world of work is changing rapidly: employees are demanding the opportunity to structure their tasks in a flexible manner and work together in agile teams, while managers are focusing on giving their teams more responsibility and better-structured work processes. These principles, known as “New Work”, have long since applied to more than hip tech startups in Berlin and are finding their way into more and more companies of all sizes and across all industries.

Regardless of whether you’re embarking on this journey to modernize your working environment as an entire company or as an individual business unit, at some point you’ll likely experience that New Work is not just a question of having the right mindset. Rather, the framework conditions must also be right for all those involved to leverage the major benefits of New Work in the day-to-day running of your company, such as more satisfied employees or more efficient business processes.

Outdated Document Management: A Stumbling Block for New Work

A recurring stumbling block on this journey is document management. Many companies and employees have a paradoxical experience with this topic. On the one hand, handling knowledge in the digital working world is becoming more and more important and pervasive. On the other hand, despite numerous investments in digital infrastructure, it is becoming increasingly complicated in many business areas to access this information flexibly and to integrate it into the relevant business processes in a transparent, user-friendly, and legally compliant manner.

The archive of the future: pulsating data heart and enabler of new work

The last three years have shown that companies that have consistently focused on digitization right from the pandemic have come through this period better. Read the white paper to find out how you can transform the data created in digitized business processes into a company-wide knowledge hub with just one archive and thus establish the foundation for “New Work”.

free whitepaper

Our experience shows that this is due to the fact that document management in many companies has generally not been considered from a holistic perspective, despite numerous digitalization initiatives. As a result, both individual employees and entire teams encounter constantly recurring problems in their day-to-day work, such as:

  • Media disruptions, e.g., when paper invoices encounter fully digitalized processes in invoice processing;
  • Broken process chains, e.g., when digital documents are used in different formats;
  • Gaps in workflows that cannot be consistently digitalized and standardized across all contact points.

What these and similar problems all have in common is that they require manual intervention in processes that should actually run in an automated manner. This causes frustration on the part of those affected – both inside and outside the company – and hinders efficiency as manual processes consume more resources and are more error prone.

The Digital Archive as an Intelligent System

The most effective solution to such problems is to systematically digitalize the place in your company where all of your company’s relevant data ultimately converges. This place is known as the archive. If more and more business processes that ultimately end up in the archive are digitalized, the logical consequence is that the documents as the media of these very processes must also be digitally archived.

For many decision-makers, however, an archive still sounds like a place where old files lie for decades in dark basements. Like libraries or encyclopedias, archives are actually a cradle of civilization. If you think of the folders of old invoices and contracts in your company, this connection will initially seem a bit far-fetched. After all, the most important function of a document archive in companies is still viewed as the need for legally required storage of relevant corporate documents.

Let’s stay with the topic of audit-proof archiving for a moment. If you’ve already grappled with the challenges of this issue, you’ll probably know what the abbreviations GoBD, HGB, and AO stand for? Ultimately, they stand for the fact that every company – from corporate groups to freelancers – must comply with complex legal regulations when archiving documents. What’s more, there are relevant archiving periods for documents, and, in general, the General Data Protection Regulation that has been in force since May 2018.

Anyone approaching the topic of archiving from a legal perspective actually needs proven expert knowledge in order not to lose an overview. Alternatively, they could rely on a digital archive that is geared to meet these requirements. After all, a digital archive is not just a virtual place where all of your company’s relevant data comes together. It is so much more. A digital archive is an intelligent system that helps you deal with your data. When it comes to tamper-proof archiving, this means that the archiving software does a lot of the work for you and uses standardized procedures to help you comply with the complex specifications for each individual archiving process.

Make the Archive the Data Heart of Your Company

In tomorrow’s business world, however, the possibilities of a digital archive extend far beyond the basic function of tamper-proof archiving. The increased importance of data in everyday digital business is reflected in the wide range of use cases for modern archiving systems. As such, archives are becoming the key to making business processes more transparent, more comprehensible, and thus easier to control and plan.

In the digital archive, the wealth of data that companies have at their disposal actually becomes readable. After all, the archive is where the data from all the business applications used in your company comes together – whether procurement, accounting, human resources, customer service or sales, all relevant data from the various business areas are reflected in the archive as the data heart and central data-knowledge hub of your company.

The Archive of the Future Comes Closer

In the medium term, the archive will increasingly become a single point of truth (SPoT) that provides decision-makers with new insights into interrelationships and structures, helping them to look beyond the confines of day-to-day business:

  • In the near future, archive-based risk analyses and forecast reports will enable better-informed decisions to be made about new projects, market opportunities, and internal company change processes.
  • In the archive of the future, you’ll be able to rely on AI-driven processes. For example, in the automated evaluation of data selected by the AI in the archive according to your needs – processed and displayed in real time.
  • The digital archive will increasingly move your business data to the cloud. This will allow archive processes to be offered more flexibly, more securely, and more cheaply, and they will be even easier to integrate into various IT systems via interfaces and plug-ins for third-party providers.
  • Tomorrow’s archive will help you become more sustainable. This will not only happen through the digitalization impetus that companies typically experience through digital archiving systems. In addition, your archive will permanently optimize itself and make the storage of data as optimal as possible and thereby increase its own efficiency.

The archive of the future: pulsating data heart and enabler of new work

The last three years have shown that companies that have consistently focused on digitization right from the pandemic have come through this period better. Read the white paper to find out how you can transform the data created in digitized business processes into a company-wide knowledge hub with just one archive and thus establish the foundation for “New Work”.

free whitepaper
related articles

What should you pay attention to when introducing archiving software at your company?

Investing in a system for audit-proof archiving represents an investment in the future. In this context, much depends on the current situation of your company. Before you implement an archiving solution, you should ask yourself important questions about it and answer them honestly.


The electronic invoice – compulsory in the B2B segment as of 2025?

Since 2020, German companies have been required to send all invoices for public contracts electronically as e-invoices. In future, all companies in Germany should only issue electronic invoices to each other in a structured data format.


Cyber Security in 2023: Interview with IT Director Andreas Fey

easy is a member of the Alliance for Cyber Security of the BSI (German Federal Office for Information Security). What does this commitment mean and why is high sensitivity to cyber security becoming more important with each passing year?