How choosing the right PDF solution can save you money

To remain competitive in today’s challenging marketplace, any potential cost savings you can identify in your business need to be addressed. Even something as pedestrian as examining your Portable Document Format requirements could lead to savings.

To remain competitive in today’s challenging marketplace, any potential cost savings you can identify in your business need to be addressed. Even something as pedestrian as examining your Portable Document Format requirements could lead to savings.

According to Craig Jennings from software solutions provider Nuance, many businesses remain unaware that a simple review of their PDF requirements can deliver savings. Jennings said a close look at the PDF needs of a business can be one of the easiest ways to reduce costs while improving document security and workflow.

 

“Many businesses have installed PDF solutions or are tied into expensive licensing agreements for PDF capability that is beyond their needs,” he explained. “Businesses need to identify a PDF solution that fits their requirements to help ensure value for money while optimising productivity.”

 

With that in mind, here is a checklist to help you choose the right PDF solution for you business.
 
1. Identify the PDF functions your business requires. For instance, do your staff simply need to view PDFs, or do they need to edit, convert and create them as well. Consider also if your team needs to work with forms, sign documents digitally or compare documents side by side. The need for such functionality will help you narrow your PDF software options.

 

2. If you already have a PDF solution implemented, examine your current costs and ascertain the software’s capability and how many users are benefiting from its functionality. This will help you further clarify your business PDF requirements.

 

3. Consider the various licensing models available and their advantages and disadvantages to identify the one that best suits your business needs. Ensure that the PDF solution you choose is not cost prohibitive and therefore restrictive in allowing you to provide a PDF solution to as many desktops as you require. Perpetual licensing is ideal for cost management and allows some of the cost of the software to be written off over a number of years, while a cloud solution is subscription-based and requires paying a fixed monthly fee.

4. Identify the degree of security that your PDF files require for both internal and external use. Is the current content of your business PDF files protected sufficiently and can 256-bit encryption be added?
 

5. When exploring the various PDF providers in the market, beware of:

 

  • Freeware, as this is often easy for hackers to penetrate; and
  • Free PDF print drivers, as these often lack any functionality.

 

6. Examine the provider’s software upgrade policy. Some providers upgrade their PDF software with every change of operating system; others upgrade every three, five or more years. Ascertain whether the software you are considering will be supported at the desired cycle.

7. Ensure the PDF solution you choose is easy to use, install and deploy within your existing computer environment. Flexibility is key so that documents can be shared or restricted, and features turned off and on, as required.

8. Ascertain whether free training plans and quick reference user guides are supplied by the PDF software provider. These would be particularly valuable if you do not have an in-house IT expert.

9. Check if the PDF solution will require patching frequently, as this can be a very time consuming and frustrating process. Some PDF solutions, such as Nuance PDF, only require patching when a new operating system is released.

 

Reviewing your PDF options using the above checklist will help you make an informed PDF solution purchase.

 

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