Finding and managing talent, not paper-based personnel files

| 12 July 2019

Business has evolved, yet many human resources departments are still managing and handling paper-based personnel files. This legacy approach presents an increasing – and increasingly untenable – number of challenges to the HR function, as complex processes become even more time-consuming with the added challenge of handling physical files. Meanwhile, securely managing a physical archive – itself a challenge in the face of new data regulations – can become a burden, given pressures on office space. At the same time, the opportunity to digitalise processes has become ever more accessible to organisations of every size. Digitalising HR processes offers a broad spectrum of advantages that accelerate processes at multiple points within an organisation, while freeing HR staff to focus on business priorities such as competing for, retaining and developing talent. Thanks to its digital document management solution, Konica Minolta is helping its customers streamline their HR processes.

Today, HR teams face unprecedented challenges on multiple fronts. On the one hand, the administrative burden of labour and data legislation has never been greater, with the compliance requirements arising from regulations like the GDPR demanding a far greater level of operational discipline. At the same time, a shortage of skilled labour has forced businesses to view HR as being mission critical in an increasingly competitive pursuit of talent: research indicates that the skilled labour shortage could leave around one million European jobs unfilled by 2020.[1] In other words, effective HR has never been so important or difficult to achieve.

Compounding this dilemma, a surprising number of HR departments are still using paper files and manual processes to manage their work. This approach is becoming less tenable in the current regulatory landscape, as paper files and archives are far harder to keep audit-proof and compliant. Handling paper documents can be far more error-prone and, even when done effectively, keeping archives organised when locating information is incredibly time-consuming. Indeed, for companies with workforces and HR officers working across multiple locations and even multiple countries, the search for documents can prove highly labour-intensive. Aside from these labour and opportunity costs, the simple act of committing information to paper obviously generates high paper and printing costs from the outset.

Such overheads are an unnecessary burden that any organisation would seek to avoid and which digitalisation of employee personal files can eliminate at a stroke. Indeed, overcoming such challenges is seen as being key to business progress: research by Konica Minolta and Comspec Consulting[2] found that 66% of organisations think that reducing costs and improving efficiency is the number one challenge with regard to business processes. Meanwhile 38% sought to reduce delays and errors and 30% wish to reduce their reliance on paper.

As a result, many companies have now moved to digital personnel files that bring all documents and data relating to an employee into a single unified resource. Indeed, Germany’s HR Software Monitor indicated that 85% of organisations in that country have done so already[3]. Other research from Germany conducted by the Otto-Friedrich-University indicated that this adoption of digital processes was already delivering results, with users of digital personnel files saving an average of three hours each week, which could instead be dedicated to higher-value tasks.[4] This research also found that 76.9% of companies using digital personnel files were able to heavily reduce space problems caused by growing volumes of paper.

However, despite increasing digitalisation of HR processes, many organisations still feel there is much more to be achieved. For example, in the HR Software Monitor report, many companies revealed that “the software used does not completely digitally cover the tasks associated with the personnel file” and that there would be “no continuous technical integration with other processes of the company”. [5]

And what of the companies yet to implement any form of digitalisation? In a survey of businesses still using paper processes, conducted by ComplyRight[6], 28% of businesses in this position say they have not yet “got around to” a planned project, but 22% are far further behind and say “they do not know where to start”, while 14% “think it is too expensive” to do so. Finally, 14% responded that “we’re too small and paper works”. Whether it is a project that is forever being kicked down the road, or simply appears too costly or complex, it is clear that a significant minority of companies are holding off on digitalisation either through ambivalence or apprehension – or even through a belief that digital transformation in HR is only something that applies to larger organisations.

Konica Minolta’s approach: all employee information at a glance

Whether an organisation has taken steps into digitalisation but is frustrated by the limitations of its existing personnel systems or is seeking to finally abandon a legacy of paper-based filing, Konica Minolta is a trusted partner that can facilitate the next steps towards a highly efficient, high-performing HR system.


With Konica Minolta’s document management solution, each stage of every HR process can be automated and accelerated with digital workflows. Benefits include automatically integrating new documents into the existing filing structure and providing access to records with convenient search and preview functions. Meanwhile, powerful and precise controls over which user accounts can view or make changes to data prevent the manipulation of records.

The digital personnel file is an easily accessible, point-and-click solution that entirely replaces paper-based files, sparing needless duplication and helping to save physical storage space. Files are digitised, secured and stored in a centralised repository that utilises best-in-class technology and follows best practices. This ensures that employee information is securely accessible from any location at any time for employees with the correct clearances, thus increasing workflow efficiency. This level of access and transparency is also beneficial to employees, who can more easily access their own personnel file – whether from their desk or even from their smartphone.

Digital personnel files can exactly mirror any existing filing structure within the personnel department while reliably complying with all regulatory provisions. Whether adherence to obligatory deletion periods, privacy policies or mandatory archiving regulations – the solution ensures that all legal requirements governing the archiving of personnel records are fully complied with.

From a financial standpoint, this greater degree of efficiency and security reduces administrative and legal costs dramatically, which makes a compelling business case. Similarly, the entire solution can be put in place with minimal installation and training requirements, thus helping overcome fears of a disruptive implementation process.

Digital HR in practice: making onboarding easier and fully compliant


Time to focus on what matters most

Digital personnel files can prove so valuable to businesses, as they not only make the work of HR officers more efficient but also liberate resource to better meet the needs of the business and employees. In effect, when enabled with a more complete overview of the organisation, HR departments can become more strategic in the way they recruit, develop and retain talent. From the employee’s perspective, the ability to easily access and understand information relating to their own career path also helps to enhance their experience of employment.

Whether it is tackling the skills shortage, meeting compliance demands or improving the daily experience of the workforce, Konica Minolta’s digital HR solutions help to unburden HR departments so they can focus on meeting their objectives and delivering value to the business.


[1] Solving the IT Skills Shortage; Anderselite; 2018;

[2] Improving and automating business operations through information management – a benchmarking survey; Comspec Consulting & Konica Minolta; 2018;

[3] These are the 4 biggest HR software trends by 2020; HR Software Monitor; 2018

[4] Use And Value Contribution Of The Digital Personnel File For Personnel Service Providers; Tutum; 2018;

[5] These are the 4 biggest HR software trends by 2020; HR Software Monitor; 2018

[6] Is it time to make your employee personnel files digital? 4 actors to help you decide; HR Direct; 2018;

About Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe

Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe GmbH, based in Langenhagen, Germany, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Konica Minolta Inc., Tokyo, Japan. With its unique expertise in imaging, data processing and data-based decision making, Konica Minolta creates relevant solutions for its customers - small and medium-sized businesses, large enterprises and public sector - and solves issues faced by society.

As a digital workplace solution provider, Konica Minolta helps its clients to identify and unlock the potential digitalisation holds and reach the next level in the digital maturity of their organisation by rethinking the workplace. In support of an ‘Intelligent connected workplace’, Konica Minolta offers cloud, IT, managed print and video solution services for remote working, collaboration, workflow management and automation and security. The company’s success in driving transformation is also confirmed by IDC, since the ‘IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Print Transformation 2023 Vendor Assessment’ has named Konica Minolta a “Leader” in print transformation. Konica Minolta has been a Microsoft Global Managed Partner since 2021.

Konica Minolta's Igniting Print Possibilities offering helps printers, converters and brand owners maximise workflow automation to increase efficiency. The company delivers consultancy in all communication matters as well as top-of-the-line production, packaging as well as label printers. Its finishing devices create print products that stand out and create added value. Konica Minolta has established itself as the production printing market leader for more than a decade in Europe (InfoSource).

For an increasing number of organisations, success today is more than the narrow definition of financial prosperity – it also includes protecting the environment and having a positive impact on their workforce as well as the societies they are embedded in. With its commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Konica Minolta has pledged to consistently pursue its sustainability and social responsibility goals.

The company has been repeatedly recognised for its rich history of social contribution as well as for working towards achieving the SDGs throughout its business and supply chain. Konica Minolta received a GOLD Level Recognition Medal in the EcoVadis sustainability ratings for 2024.

For its remote services, Konica Minolta was awarded the prestigious ‘Buyers Lab (BLI) 2023-2024 Pacesetter Award in Remote Service for the Western European market’ from Keypoint Intelligence.

Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe is represented by subsidiaries and distributors in more than 80 countries in Europe, Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa. With more than 8,700 employees (as of April 2023), Konica Minolta Europe earned net sales of over EUR 2.26 billion in financial year 2022/2023.

Worldwide, the company has over 39,000 employees and is operating in over 150 countries.

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