What is a Digital Mailroom?
Written by: Tim Myatt
Publish Date: Dec 17, 2020
Read time: 8 minutes
At EDM, we spend a lot of time explaining the benefits of our services but we rarely stop to think if we’re preaching to a converted audience or not. We recognise that we use terms which are either unique to us or to the industry and therefore you can’t (easily) deduce whether it’s something which could help ease a pain you’re experiencing. You’re reading this now so maybe we’ve assumed a little too much at times.
Let’s go back to the beginning then. What is a digital mailroom?
When large organisations (businesses with multiple divisions, departments or buildings) receive mail it’s usually sorted through a physical onsite mailroom. This enables your post to go from post person to your desk without your employees spending time running back and forward to the post box to seek post and without the post person getting lost around your building. It works both ways, simplifying the process for outbound mail also. With an onsite mailroom, you could simplify the workflow and make a more efficient process for delivering comms.
This setup works perfectly… for physical mail. But business communications are decreasingly physical. Letters have lost out to emails. Complaints are now tweets. Signed documents can be PDFs. With every passing year, there’s an increasing number of new ways to communicate with your customers and prospects and, broadly speaking, you have to keep up with most of them because your competitors will.
What if there was a way to take the efficiencies of an in-house mailroom and expand them to incorporate all forms of communication, physical, digital or otherwise?
It’s a catch-all term for the next step in mailroom technology. A digital mailroom is a way to merge all communications through a singular point of entry and exit for all comms, digital or otherwise. Get all the benefits of routing mail - and more as you minimise the risk of human error - and transfer these benefits onto your digital channels also.
What makes a digital mailroom transformative to businesses is the strategy and processes which support the technology. It’s a time to take a step back and really consider if you operate in the most efficient manner particularly when it comes to your inbound communications. When we talk about a digital mailroom, we essentially talk about the evolution in mailroom technology.
You can read about the process in more detail here [link to process] but at its most simplistic. You take incoming mail, scan it and then, using the latest in AI, workflow automation, machine learning and Optical Character Recognition (OCR), intelligently route the communication to the right individual.
You save time in the process with documents available almost immediately after scanning, and on top of that the files are categorised, indexed and searchable. No more rummaging around physical documents, you can essentially ctrl+f on your correspondence, allowing you to improve response times and customer service. A critical advantage to any business as they seek to make marginal gains in these uncertain times.
So that’s a digital mailroom. Now that you have a clearer understanding of what we’re talking about when we say digital mailroom, I’m sure you have more questions. Is it safe and secure? Is it cost effective? We have documented everything you need to know about digital mailrooms here.