Think of it in this way: What are you going to when you need to fetch data or a document that is years old and you have very little time for it? At such times your efficiency and capabilities are questioned. These times can be difficult because retrieving data from a file which is years old kill time and effort too. Having everything documented on the cloud/online gives you access to it from anywhere, anytime.
In any business efficiency is the most important. Be it strategizing a high-level development or refilling the candy bowl, managers and other employees work hard to prove their efficiency. But when one wants to retrieve documents from the past, then efficiency becomes a big question.
A typical employee spends 30-40% of their time looking for information kept in filling cabinets.
We stopped writing letters year back since the emails came into place. But, never did we think to go paperless completely. The internet and computer are two innovations that have made communications easy and faster than ever. Little did we know the capability of the computer and the internet world.
Going paperless will also keep the environment safe. We have heard this many time “Save Trees go paperless.” Time to execute this now!
What Steps to follow to go Paperless?
It is not possible for one to go paperless immediately. The sound of it alone is very daunting and come to think of it, storing more than 1000s of documents on the storage tool or device will take so much of your time. Let’s start it today and right now! Go paperless and clear your offices’ file storage rooms.
Say No to Paper & Print
It’s been estimated that 45% of paper printed in offices ends up trashed by the end of the day and that companies spend more than $120 billion a year on printed forms—most of which outdate themselves within three months’ time.
This will be the first step towards a paperless office is emphasizing on reducing the use of paper. For the beginning you don’t need to invest heavy you just to keep a watch on what you are printing and whether it is required. Print only if it is necessary, generate reports to track the same and see where you can avoid printing. Use software or solutions that allow you to store all your documents online and gives access anytime and anywhere.
Another thing that you can do to reduce print is to reduce the number of printers and keep them at a distance, so people find it a pain to walk all the way to print. Keep printers that have fewer features hence those looking for colored or high-definition prints will not print anything.
You can also ask for e-statements from banks, which will be easily available through the emails. Even your vendors and other service providers can send invoices through emails instead of sending them to post/mail.
Adopt Electronic Signatures
Once you start uploading documents online, you may think u will have to print them for signing them, but this is just a myth. The solutions that allow you to store your documents also allow you to e-sign them and have others also sign them too. Digital documents can be signed online using different e-signatures. All you must do is start using electronic signatures wherever you can like for letters in the company, vendor approvals, and other documentation.
Avoid taking prints for small things like circulars, memos, etc. when you can e-sign them online and have them circulated. This way you are moving towards a paperless office. E-signatures also help in finishing the documentation faster.
Some require stamping on documents, which will stop you from going paperless. Why not read our blog How Digitization & E-Stamping Make Documentation Easy? And see how e-stamping documents and going paperless is very easy with us.
Use Tablets or Smartphones to Take notes
Meetings are very common in offices. Some have laptops, but mostly everyone carries a notebook to take notes. Start making a few changes here, stop notepads in meetings and have everyone take notes on their phones or tablets. You should be the first one to skip a notebook or notepads and bring your device to take notes. There are multiple advantages in this, you will take clear notes and can share with all and number two you will save a lot of paper and ink. In this era of digital transformation, you can bring a new change by avoiding pen and paper in meetings. Let’s contribute to the environment, you do your bit, your team will do theirs.
Move to paperless Billing
Ask your vendors to go paperless, tell them to send invoices through emails. Whatever documents or agreements need to be signed and validated can be done through the software or solutions. Ask them to send you invoices in PDF format. You can then store them on your computer and look through them when required. Let your customers know about purchase order emails. When we can send money online why can’t we send bills online.
Document everything on Cloud
Now, that we are moving to a paperless office it’s important to move them to Cloud. There are many such apps available that allow you to store your docs in any amount of numbers. You can share the same docs with the end number of people whom you wish should have access. This will eliminate paper use and yet have all the documents in place. Your documents are safe here and they will never get misplaced.
More than 70% of businesses would fail within 3 weeks if they suffered a catastrophic loss of paper-based records due to fire or flood.
Importance & Benefits of Going Paperless
If you are still in a dilemma about whether to go paperless or no, the benefits and how it is important will convince you to make the switch.
- One point of Access: It’s not easy to find documents from the storage rooms, it’s a nightmare. Taking all your documents to cloud or digital drives will make it all easy for you. All your employees can access the required data from any location in the world. It keeps you on track in time and you can focus on the major things of your work. Why let documentation bother you when there are digital drives for your storage.
- Time & Cost Saving: Paper consumption in the United States for the last 20 years has increased from 92 million tons to 208 million, a growth of 126%. This is a lot of paper and a lot of money. Which means a lot of trees are cut and huge loss to the environment. If you go paperless, you not only save trees but your money and time too.
- Security: Storing files and documents on the cloud gives a lot of security to your documents. What if you din put your files online and the building caught fire, you are finished? So, without wasting time, take your documents online.
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