How Neglecting Proper Documentation Hurts Your Bottom Line

By The Good Words Team
August 3, 2022

Many businesses don’t think of documentation as directly impacting their bottom line. But when done right, documentation can save your business many thousands of dollars each year. Documentation can even directly grow your profits by helping you onboard and retain talent, increase customer engagement, and help your organization run more efficiently.  

That also means that if you’re neglecting documentation, you’re likely leaving significant money on the table. A lack of documentation can lead to productivity and collaboration issues, which can delay key processes or hold up projects. It can also create a negative or confusing experience for both employees and customers. Compounded over time, all these issues can have a significant negative impact on your bottom line. 

Let’s take a closer look at some of the benefits that come from investing in proper documentation. 

Benefit #1: Documentation Makes Your Business More Efficient 

Did you know an enterprise employing 1,000 knowledge workers wastes up to $48,000 per week, or $2.5 million per year, due to an inability to locate and retrieve simple information? (Source: International Data Corporation).

This is because up to 50% of information available in an enterprise is not centrally indexed–that is, it’s not properly documented.As a result, the average knowledge worker spends 2.5 hours every day searching for it. If you invest in properly documenting your products and services in a way that’s easy for your customers and support teams to navigate, you have the potential to “buy back” up to 30% of your employees’ workday.

Think how much your products or customer service could improve if all that time were put to more efficient, productive use. It would certainly bolster your bottom line. 

Benefit #2: Documentation Can Help You Onboard and Retain Talent

Onboarding new workers is expensive and often stressful for all parties. Documentation can make the whole process smoother, both for new hires and for those training them. With documentation, you have the ability to lay out, step-by-step, exactly how key processes in your organization work. This can relieve stress and guesswork for new hires, save you time, and minimize future mistakes. 

Your more experienced employees will also benefit from documentation. New hires can rely on documentation to find information and get set up instead of asking senior employees for hands-on help. All of this will help you decrease turnover and retain talent. 

Benefit #3: Documentation Helps With Customer Engagement & Satisfaction

All that said, proper documentation isn’t just great for your employees. It also creates a better experience for your customers. If your product or service is complex, customer-facing documentation can help make it easier for your customers to use it and understand it.

Internal documentation also benefits customers because it creates a consistent experience for them across different employees. Incorporating documentation when onboarding and training talent creates a consistent training experience, which will then “trickle down” into customer experience. In short: customers crave consistency. Consistency is much easier to achieve across all areas of your business with good documentation. 

If you want a documentation strategy that will save you money and  will also increase profits for years to come, reach out to us today.