Ricoh Europe, specialist in office solutions, managed document services and production printing today revealed the findings from a series of focus groups conducted by leading global market intelligence firm, IDC. The groups included more than 250 CIOs in nine European markets¹. They discussed the challenges that CIOs face in managing the increasing volume of information within their business today. IDC predicts that by 2020 digital information will have grown by factor of 30, yet the number of global IT professionals expected to manage it, will only have grown by factor of 1.4².
The focus groups considered the most effective ways to transform business information and business documents into a valuable asset for the company. Centralising document management was listed alongside the need to further maximise the benefits of Managed Document Services. The majority of participants agreed that effective management of documents stored, shared and created internally is a business priority but confessed to simply not having the time to begin tackling the problem. According to IDC, an organization with 1000 knowledge workers is losing $6 million annually, as employees search for; recreate and reformat information¹.
The study also confirmed the results of Ricoh and IDC’s quantitative study launched in Europe in October 2010, “Managing Documents for Success in the New Business Information Paradigm . Despite an understanding of the benefits of managing information more efficiently, and the role Managed Document Services can play, many senior IT professionals still underestimate the benefits it can bring to their business. Benefits include cost reduction, improved security, lower environmental impacts and increased productivity as a result of streamlining access to critical information.
The majority of the CIO’s within the focus groups agreed that the successful implementation of Managed Document Services is dependent on the combination of three key elements – Process, People and technology. Successful deployment of the technology and the return on investment is significantly increased by ensuring it is embedded into the heart of the businesses processes, and its employees receive support to adopt any changes introduced.
It was noted that a key area for improvement within organisations was to increase the support required when changing internal processes, and helping employees inside their organisations adapt to the changes. Many called for senior management to lead by example in terms of managing the change process internally.
As a result of the findings, Ricoh has created five guidelines for CIOs to ensure they can more effectively manage information flow across all business divisions into the future:
1. Ensure focus on people and analyse end user behaviour to inform technology decision making
2. Effectively manage the change process so that investments are protected and maximized
3. Focus on document process optimisation to drive the best return on investment and speak the language of the Chief Financial Officer.
4. Work with suppliers that offer ongoing governance not just ‘deploy and depart’ – create true partnerships with vendors, a proper business relationship that has a long term view of where the business is going.
5. Implement best practice technology – it goes without saying that the technology deployed is both robust, secure and innovation should be driven by the customer.
David Mills, Executive Vice President, Operations, Ricoh Europe says, “The know-how and the collective knowledge of employees, the conversations that they have every day, the ideas that they generate and the information that they create and share, is an organisations ‘information capital’. It is what differentiates a company and what ensures its ongoing growth in a rapidly changing workplace. By considering our guidelines, CIOs will be equipped to support their organisations into the future.”
“Ricoh Managed Document Services goes beyond the traditional Managed Print Services offerings to truly harness the power of Information Capital as a central business asset. By supporting change management processes we differentiate our offering and help CIOs to protect both the long and short term return on investment. We will work with them to implement effective business process improvement and support the change so that employees become proficient with the new technologies and processes.”
“With this approach we are actively committed to supporting the transformation of CIOs into powerful and strategic advisors within their business, able to drive innovation, inform strategic decision making and help to grow the business.”
 Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, and the U.K./Ireland – October 2010
 The Digital Universe Decade – Are You Ready?, May 2010, An IDC iView sponsored by EMC
 Source IDC : Hidden Costs of Information Work: A Progress Report, IDC#217936, 2009
 477 qualified respondents at a number of Europe’s largest organisations in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland and the UK/Ireland – October 2010
About Ricoh Europe
Ricoh Company, Ltd (“Ricoh Company”) is a global technology leader, specialising in the office and production printing markets. Ricoh works with organisations around the world to modernise work environments and optimise document efficiency.
With over 108,500 employees worldwide, it operates in Europe, the Americas, Asia Pacific, China and Japan. Ricoh Europe Holdings Plc is a public limited company and the EMEA headquarters of Ricoh Company with operations located in London, United Kingdom and Amstelveen, the Netherlands. In the fiscal year ended 31 March 2010, revenues from Ricoh's EMEA operations totalled over YEN 458.5 billion ($4.5 bn) Ricoh Company's worldwide sales totalled over YEN 2,016 billion ($21bn) during the year ended 31 March 2010