7 Benefits of an (Almost) Paperless Credentialing System

March 15, 2017
The Benefits of Paperless Credentialing System

Credentialing managers learn how to swim in oceans of documents. As with any paper-intensive process, organization and storage manifest as the chief enemies of success. While provider enrollment and privileging are critical aspects of your practice, maintaining accuracy and equilibrium can seem elusive without the help of a comprehensive digital tool. Fortunately, new credentialing IT products can nearly eliminate the need for paper. Although transitioning to a paperless process may seem daunting, you ultimately stand to gain much more than the perceived pain of going digital. Some of the benefits include:


If every credentialing requirement from every source could be permanently fulfilled at the time of hire, a manual, paper-driven process might be somewhat tolerable. However, in this environment of ever-changing rules, maintaining compliance, especially in a large practice, demands a hawk-like vigilance. By migrating to an electronic system, you have the ability to automate:

  • Forms
  • Expirations reminders
  • Automatic OIG queries
  • Impending CE requirements
  • And much more
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Customized Reports

Your provider files contain a lot of data from which to extract reports. No longer do you need to pore over files, pull information from disparate storage or software programs and compile reports in Excel or some other spreadsheet application. When you go paperless, you can generate custom reports with just a few clicks of the mouse.

End of the Paper Chase

Digitizing and automating your provider files means never having to dig through piles of documents stacked on your desk, in filing cabinets or elsewhere in the office. Electronic files live, neatly organized, in electronic storage until you want them. Using a cloud-based application also means extra security against data loss or unauthorized access. In the distributive network of the public cloud, your data actually lives in many physical locations as a safeguard against disasters happening at any one site.

Professional Data Security

As mentioned, your data is well-protected in the cloud. In fact, it’s far more difficult to effectively secure your data in-house. True IT security professionals fetch rather hefty salaries, which are difficult for anyone but the largest HCOs to afford. However, with IT infrastructure consolidating into widespread data centers with Service Level Agreements committed to the highest levels of IT security, you have the benefit of top-notch monitoring for a tiny fraction of the cost. Any original paper documents you need to keep can be sent with your patient records to your established and trustworthy storage facility. Plus, you control access permissions. No one can touch your provider data unless you allow it.

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Filing Cabinets Converted into Potted Plants

Absent the need to store tons of physical paper, you can move out those filing cabinets and shelves of binders. You can fill those empty spaces with attractive, oxygen-producing plants now that you have a lot more room to breathe. These new additions can serves as reminders of the environmentally conscious decision your team has made by going as paperless as possible.

24/7 File Access

Your credentialing document management application offers the added benefit of allowing access to your files from any secure web-connected device at any time, day, night or weekend. You won’t even need to be in the office to locate, review and manipulate information in your files.

Reduction in Administrative Staff

Because most CVOs and primary sources have developed electronic systems, as well, almost all steps in the credentialing process are quickly becoming paperless across the multitude of involved organizations. When information can be gathered, organized, sent and received without ever creating a paper document, a substantial amount of work disappears. A paperless credentialing system frees up your administrative staff for more revenue-rewarding activity. In many cases, you can leave open positions unfilled.

Not only will you save time, money and mistakes with a paperless credentialing system, the future portends nearly paperless workflows across the entire medical delivery industry according to CAQH. Educational institutions, supply chain partners, regulatory agencies, payers, labs, imaging facilities, hospitals, revenue cycle departments, pharmacies and so many more medical participants are taking advantage of interoperable exchange applications than ever before. Practices that cannot engage electronically will soon face an uphill battle to remain competitive. Digitizing your credentialing department is a great place to start parting the sea of paper.

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