(From the editor: This article was originally published on Channel Partner Connection.)

From mom and pop shops to multinational corporations, every business owner has at least one thing in common: they’re trying to accomplish more in less time, with less money. What they also have in common is that most are underestimating the power of switching from paper to digital workflows in helping them reach those goals.

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The Benefits of Digitization

Given the wide-reaching benefits of going digital, it’s surprising that so many companies have yet to get started. Perhaps the disconnect is that too many businesses don’t fully understand either the process of digitization or why it makes sense for them individually.

Digitization is more than converting paper documents to digital files. True digitization involves creating an end-to-end solution that includes document routing, storing, sharing and printing. It incorporates mobile print and cloud solutions, as well as state-of-the-art security and automates complex document workflows.

The Device Matters

ConnectKey-enabled MFPs from Xerox have the capability to fundamentally change the way the world works by going beyond base printing, copying, scanning and faxing functions. You can personalize the way you work, so that digitization just about solving common challenges, but solving each person’s personal challenges.

ConnectKey Technology® enables one-touch workflows right from the device. For example, imagine having the capability to create an invoice, route it to the correct recipient, and store it in the cloud right from your MFP. Solutions like that can have a huge impact on office efficiency.

Offices Should Be Mobile – and It Should Be Easy

Who doesn’t have a tablet or smartphone these days? Very few people, and even fewer business owners. That is why the AltaLink® and VersaLink® family of products were designed with an easy to use interface that looks and works very much like your tablet or smartphone.

Mobility, without question, is critical to a successful digital transformation. But it shouldn’t be difficult to enable in the workplace or require a huge startup investment. ConnectKey Technology® makes downloading, sharing, printing, scanning, distributing and even translating documents from anywhere simple and easy – as simple as tapping an app. Its optional Wi-Fi feature pairs easily with your cloud service to connect your entire team to the MFP via their mobile devices.


Security is a growing concern for every business, but especially SMBs. Consequently, it’s a vital part of the digital transformation conversation.

43% of all cyber-attacks that occurred in 2015 targeted small businesses. What’s more, half of all small businesses in 2016 had experienced a security breach within the past year. Every Xerox®ConnectKey® Technology-enabled device is armed with a holistic four-point approach to security that ensures comprehensive protection for the entire system at all points of vulnerability.

Apps are the Future of Work

One of the primary differences between Xerox®ConnectKey® Technology-enabled workplace assistants and standard MFPs are the customiz-able apps that allow you to add, delete, or swap tools as your business changes.

Existing apps themselves are transforming office like, like Capture Point, which converts paper into any required format, or Easy Translator, which enables in-office translation quickly and easily, right from the MFP. There are even apps for specific verticals like healthcare, apps designed to help healthcare customers maintain HIPAA compliance and protect patient confidentiality while still sharing information quickly and efficiently.

The Role of MPS

The device is where the process starts. MPS software is the next step, bridging the gap between paper and digital.

Scanning is a fundamental component of any paper-to-digital conversion strategy. Done right, a digital conversion solution allows you to work with electronic documents in the same manner as you have with paper. Scan/capture solutions give businesses the ability to create editable, searchable files that can be scanned directly into existing document repositories, applications, and document management systems. Combining these capabilities with the advanced features of the smart MFP allows businesses to simplify and automate workflow, while significantly reducing the amount of time and energy spent rekeying or searching for information.

Driving Real Business Value

Digitization isn’t just about staying on top of emerging trends. It has real business value. Results from IDC’s Content Workflow Automation Survey showed that organizations who made strides toward digitizing, automating, and optimizing their document workflows:

  • Reduced the percentage of time spent on document-related tasks each week by 17.2%
  • Saved an average of 3.1 hours each week on document-related tasks
  • Experience a 3% reduction in paper documents
  • Decreased the time spent looking for and/or recreating lost or misfiled documents by 12.5%
  • Reduced the costs of storing documents by an average of 41.2%

Designed and implemented properly, intelligent workflow solutions can increase productivity while pushing additional savings to the bottom line.