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ROI (Return on Investment) and Document Portals

Oct 02, 2023

Most businesses invest significant resources and incur costs related to documentation. Whether it's related to HSE or QA, instructions, technical / project documentation, reference materials or reports, documents are a substantial part of everyday operations for any organization. Can money be saved by improving software systems related to documentation?

Graphic of ROI

Achieve a good Return on Investment (ROI) by implementing dedicated information portals in your organization.

Find the Right Information at the Right Time

Many studies have estimated the time it takes to find the right information. Gartner suggests 18 minutes per document, IDC claims 5 hours per week, and McKinsey's report suggests 1.8 hours per day spent searching for and collecting information.

While these numbers can be debated, the key point is that we spend a significant amount of time searching for information.

We can try to calculate the cost for the time spent by an information worker trying to find the right information. Let's be more conservative than Gartner, IDC, McKinsey and say that it takes 3 hours per week to find the right information. IDC estimates that time used can be reduced by 53% by implementing "high-quality" search and information access tools. With an annual salary of NOK 700,000, (EUR 70,000,) a worker could save time equivalent to NOK 30,000, (EUR 3,000,) per year by using good document portals. If your organization has 100 employees, we're talking about an annual time saving equivalent to NOK 3 million (EUR 300,000,). This saving frees up work resources that can be allocated to other tasks.

Image of saved cost

How do we achieve this? ?

  • With the Readin document portal, documents are located in only one place and in one format.
  • 100% device independent and mobile-friendly
  • Powerful and precise searching with good filtering options and search hits shown in document.
  • Smart user functions like "keep reading", bookmarks, and notifications for updates.

Have we tested it?

Yes, we have tested before and after Readin implementation. One of our clients had many documents in different formats stored in several Sharepoint sites. Before Readin implementation, it took us 3 minutes to locate a work instruction stored as a PDF and an additional 2 minutes to find the right section within the instruction.

Through the Readin document portal we spent 15 seconds from the start of the search to reading the content we were looking for.

Reduced need for IT personnel and systems

Traditional documentation systems require operational services. This could be SharePoint, intranet, document management, and similar systems. With a cutting-edge SAAS (Software as a Service) system for publishing and presenting documents, the need for IT services can be reduced.

Our calculations indicate up to NOK 200,000, (EUR 20.000,) in reduced costs for IT personnel annually, using the Readin document portal with 100 users.

After interviewing IT personnel employed by some of our clients about their weekly time consumption. Based on their answers, we estimate that they spend an average of 10% of their time on documentation-related systems. By implementing the Readin document portal, we believe we can reduce this time to 5%.

Additional savings may be made by reducing the need for hardware and software, amounting to approximately NOK 100,000, (EUR 10.000,) per year.

Reduced need for support

Support can be divided into two types, customer support/service and internal support for employees. Both require personnel and systems to maintain the service. By enabling users, whether customers or employees, to search and find information in the document portal, the need for support services can be reduced. Modern document portals can tailor content to specific products or processes, making it easier to find and access the right information.

In addition, good document portals make it easier and faster for support personnel to find the right information when needed.

By reducing number of phone calls, chat messages, and emails with effective self-service solutions, costs can be reduced. A study carried out by the Association of Support Professionals found that it costs USD 36.14 to resolve each support request. If we moderate this to NOK 300, (EUR 30) and estimate that implementing a document portal for support and customer service can reduce this by 15%, then handling 20 support cases daily would yield an annual savings of NOK 225,000, (22,500,). The same principles can be applied to internal support for employees.

Fewer errors and unwanted incidents

There are three main reasons why documentation can lead to errors and unwanted incidents:

1. Difficult and time-consuming to find the right information

A PDF-based document system can be challenging when it comes to searching and accessing content in a time efficient way. A document portal can easily contain over 200 documents, and strong search functions across all documents are needed. The Readin document portal is the tool that makes it easy to find the right information at the right time.

If users are using mobile devices, finding and reading PDF documents is not user-friendly. You end up zooming in and out to read documents, which is clearly inefficient. The Readin document portal adapts to the devices being used, making searching and reading easy on all devices (mobile, tablet, and PC).

2. Old and outdated documentation

All systems for document management and publication that rely on files (PDF and Word) pose a security risk. Often, companies upload PDF files to their intranet or link to SharePoint or another document management system. We have seen several times that users save the PDF documents to their computers rather than reading them online. It's easy to imagine that the next time the user wants to read the document, they open the local copy on their computer, with the danger of missing important updates done to the online “master” version.

With the Readin document portal, you can be sure that users are reading the updated versions of the documents. They exist in only one place, on the company's document portal. If a document is updated, users are notified. This way, you can avoid unwanted incidents caused by outdated documentation.

3. Errors in the content

Errors in content often occur in a hectic daily routine. Can they be avoided in modern document production systems? Certainly. With Readin's revision note functionality, readers can add notes and alert document owners directly about errors and deficiencies they find. Until the document is revised and updated, anyone reading the document will see a warning that this part of the document is under revision. Smart, isn't it?

Can ROI be calculated for fewer errors and unwanted incidents?

Yes, but it only makes sense when looking at a specific business and what type of business it is.

For example, in an oil company, incorrect system maintenance can cause production shutdowns and incur significant costs.

For jobs that require tasks to be performed according to instructions, such as working at heights, it's crucial that the instructions are presented in a user-friendly and easily accessible way to reduce the risk of unwanted incidents.

User-friendly and accessible document portals reduce errors and unwanted incidents.

Increased market efficiency and customer satisfaction

By making documentation available in a document portal, you can increase digital presence and improve search engine optimization (SEO). If you upload company user manuals, support documentation, safety instructions, etc., to a web-based document portal, you will increase the website's value in terms of SEO accessibility. In other words, your company's digital profile can be strengthened without spending a dime. The more hits and views on your website, the more value your digital presence receives.

If a company prioritizes good and user-friendly document portals for presenting documents to customers, it is likely that customer satisfaction will increase.

The research firm Forrester releases the Customer Experience Index (CxPi), confirming a strong correlation between CxPi and the willingness to award additional contracts to existing suppliers. A total of 81% of companies said that high customer satisfaction increases the likelihood of additional contracts.

By offering customers a good document portal, you prevent frustration and turn the customer relationship into a positive experience with high customer satisfaction.

Contact us for a discussion on how you can save money by implementing the Readin document portal.

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