The Dummies Guide to Offsite Document Storage
Discover four key Offsite Document Storage Tips you need to know.
Securely storing your company or organisation’s records and documents is not an optional action. There are many regulations that govern the storage of your records and there are penalties for non-compliance.
While you may choose to store many of your documents at your own premise this is neither the most secure option nor the most cost effective.
Offsite document storage is by far the safest way to store your company’s records, provided you know what to look for when choosing an offsite document storage facility.
1. Use offsite document storage facilities that have good security.
When it comes to securing your records and documents, taking shortcuts is not recommended. While many companies do choose to use self-storage facilities, in most cases the security of these facilities falls short of those offered by professional offsite document storage companies.
Compliant storage facilities will not only make use of perimeter security but also internal and external camera surveillance systems, manned security and access control and offsite monitoring and linking to police and security services.
2. Make sure your offsite facility has safety and disaster management systems in place.
Company records, whether in the form of electronic data or paper data, are delicate and can be damaged or destroyed quite easily. Should your company or organisation’s documents get destroyed or badly damaged you could face not only legal action but also reputation damage and even end up having to close.
Using self-storage facilities may seem like a good idea until something goes wrong. You need to remember that few self-storage facilities, if any, have disaster management systems. Purpose-built offsite storage facilities, on the other hand, will have not only fire detection systems and suppression systems in place but they will also make use of power backup systems and regular fumigation and damp proofing inspections.
3. Unsecure access controls are used and retrievals are secure and well managed.
Another important feature to consider when choosing which offsite document storage facility to use is access control. Who will be responsible for retrieving your records when needed and how often will you need to retrieve them?
Self-storage units do not make use of high-security access control systems such as biometric scanning. They also do not offer any sort of document management such as filing or electronic tagging of records or the handling of retrievals for you. Furthermore utilising self-storage units does not allow you to digitise your documents and allow remote access to them through a web portal, which makes retrievals almost instant.
4. Choose and experienced partner.
Perhaps one of the most important aspects of using a specialist offsite document storage company is their experience. As the name suggests, self-storage means you have to manage and handle everything yourself. Partnering with an expert means you have access to not only state-of-the-art facilities with high-tech security, disaster prevention and access control but you also have years of experience on how to manage records more effectively.
Iron Mountain is one such expert. As the largest privately help Records and Information Management Company in Southern Africa, you can rest assured our world-class facilities and experienced management team can assist you no matter what your requirements.
For more information about how Iron Mountain can help you and your organisation please feel free to contact us today.
Image Credit: Iron Mountain Archive