While it is highly unlikely all businesses will go completely digital within the next decade or so, it will be beneficial to future generations to highlight the advantages of a paperless work environment, which they will hopefully adapt. In an article published in money.howstuffworks.com, Diane Dannenfeldt gives us a glimpse of the possibilities in a world without paper.
The most obvious perk of going paperless is the reduction of cost and clutter. No more tripping over and worrying about voluminous documents, plus access to information becomes faster and more efficient. Finding and amending records will be a breeze, even from remote locations.
“MajesticInvites.com is an eight-person company that designs online invitations. Being paperless saves the company about $100,000 per year on printing, mailing, paper and storage space …
And because employees can access electronic documents more quickly than paper, they can almost instantly respond to customer questions or make their changes.”
So how does one get started on a paperless journey? The term “paperless” doesn’t only refer to leafed documents. Firms, such as Spectrum Information Services, offer document scanning and preserve other media types via photograph, microfiche, and microfilm scanning.
“If you’re considering the transition to a paperless office — or at least a more paperless office, you may be wondering where to start and what you’ll need. Many companies offer document management systems, hardware, software and consulting services…”
The article does mention innovative ways some have taken to save paper. The first is a system that converts incoming faxes into electronic documents. The second process eliminates the need for temporary paper used for appointments in a doctor’s office. The patient arrives and puts a finger on a biometric scanner, then the patient’s presence is then posted on the office computer. Lastly, a tax professional provides his clients’ documents in PDF form on a rewritable CD, which the client can bring back for next year’s return.
Most likely at the top of every entrepreneur’s mind would be digital document managing. If the business generates minimal amount of paper, you could invest in an over-the-counter scanner and optical character recognition (OCR) software. However, for large volume conversions and comprehensive document scanning services, consulting a professional is highly recommended.
“If you have large quantities of paper documents to turn into electronic files or need help getting the job done quickly, you may want to outsource document imaging…
And if you don’t have a robust enough server or want to store electronic files off site, many document imaging companies offer a hosted server solution.”
To fast track your road to becoming paperless at work, make the commitment and get some help, if needed. Future generations, as well as Mother Nature, will thank you.
(Article Excerpt and Image from How Paperless Offices Work http://money.howstuffworks.com)