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What’s the Difference between a Scan and a Copy?

Last Updated on August 23, 2022 by

In a world of multifunction printers, many people use the words scan and copy interchangeably. But these two things are actually not the same.

  • A copy is a physical piece of paper that is a duplicate of something else.
  • A scan is a digital file created that stores an image electronically.

Multi-function printers have both copy and scan functions. Many have settings that will allow a person to make a hard copy of a document while simultaneously scanning it to keep in a digital file. At times, this can be advantageous, because a digital record can be made of important documents. Other times, you may want only a limited number of copies to exist and may not want to keep a digital copy, due to confidentiality or if whatever is being copied is only needed for a short term, like making flyers to post in the break room, and don’t need to be included as part of the company files. A simple copy machine is often the best option in this case.

Scanning Makes Sharing Across Locations Easier

Many companies operate across various locations, and often they have employees that work from a remote location. This means you can’t always share documents by walking across the office and handing a piece of paper to someone at their desk. While Multi-Function Printers do have document scanning capabilities, the images created might not be as high quality as those scanned with a dedicated scanner that makes high-resolution digital images. Scanners are also best for shorter documents, because they scan slower than copiers make copies. They also don’t have settings like collating or stapling. They do create a digital copy that can be kept in an accessible file or even faxed or emailed to a desired location. If necessary, the recipient can print the document from their own printer, however in most cases simply viewing the file image on a screen is sufficient.

Why a Legal Scanning Service Might Make Sense for Your Company

As we attempt to be more environmentally conscious as a society, many companies have done away with a good portion of their paper filing systems and have opted to keep files stored primarily electronically, and only print out copies when absolutely necessary. Digital copies can be categorized and kept in computer file folders that only allow access to those who are authorized to read or adapt the document. If you work in an office where confidentiality and strong privacy rules prevail, such as a law office, it can help to use a legal scanning service, such as Tab Service Company.

Tab Service Company is a business processing outsourcing company that can take on many of the operating tasks in your company and help to keep things organized and accessible to those who need access, and secure from those who don’t.

Creating a Digital File System

Once a digital file system is in place, it becomes something that is easy to work with. It reduces paper waste, shredding and recycling needs, and keeps files more secure. An outsourced system is stored on an off-campus server, which helps to increase security even more and protect against data and identity thieves. There are several services we offer to support your company’s transition to a digital system.

Digital Mailroom

Just going through the mail and deciding where everything goes can be a hassle for many companies. Mail can be one of the biggest sources of paper copies and when mail is sent to a large company, it becomes a challenge to keep physical hard copies secure and to assure they only get into the right hands. A digital mailroom can categorize different types of mail and even take payments. It can help direct work to digital workflows both in-house and outsourced by uploading documents to a file transfer platform or a client network.

Document Scanning

If your business has been keeping paper files and is looking to switch to a digital system, the transition can be daunting. Tab Service Company can scan existing paper documents and categorize them so they can be shared by those who need to access them. Paper files can be largely eliminated and printed only when necessary.

Data Processing and Forms Capture

When forms and documents contain handwriting, there can be a bit more legwork when it comes to processing. Rather than simply scanning, these types of documents often need to be transcribed and put into their own spreadsheet, database, or text file.

Survey Processing

In order to serve their customers best, many companies get feedback from conducting surveys. Many of these are physical copies that need to be scanned, and the information sorted in a useful way. We can transfer this information to digital files to help get the most out of the information.

Consider working with Tab Service Company for help with document scanning, and other business processes.

Read More: Benefits of Digital Marketing for Small Businesses

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