Converting from paper-based to paperless can be intimidating but with a plan and properly trained staff, the concerns and fears about paperless can easily be overcome. Paperless businesses improve the security of documents, while increasing office efficiency. Here’s a quick break down of the benefits that come along with paperless.
Many people think the switch to paperless will cost more, in terms of training, hardware and software than continuing to be paper-based. And, while expenses do exist, the return on investment is enormous. For some businesses, the switch to paperless can pay for itself within a matter of weeks or months.
2. Labor Savings
Paper is extremely time-consuming to work with as it requires a great deal of time and labor to organize and retrieve. On average, office staff spend about one hour per month searching for and replacing files. If this is the case at your company, the move to paperless could pay for itself within a month.
3. Printing Costs
Printing hard copies of business documents requires the purchase of paper, toner, ink, the printers and their maintenance. In most organizations, going paperless can save more than $500 per person per year in these supplies.
4. Photocopier Costs
Photocopiers are very expensive to purchase and maintain. By going paperless, employees can access and edit a digital document then electronically send it to a co-worker or save it. These documents can also be accessed simultaneously, eliminating the need for multiple copies.
5. Lost & Misfiled Documents
7% of all paper documents get lost or misfiled. A secure and backed up paperless environment, greatly minimizes the risk of losing or misplacing a digital document. And if a disaster should occur, digital documents can often be recovered, whereas paper documents could be gone permanently.
6. Email Management
Perhaps your staff is concerned that digital documents will just mean more emails. However, with simple email management strategies, there is no need for staff to spend tedious hours organizing, reviewing and deleting emails. Emails should be treated like any other type of electronic file and be immediately categorized into an appropriate folder.
7. Storage Costs
Paper files take up space and many organizations are forced give up their office space to file cabinets and boxes of documents. Paperless companies greatly minimize their need for storage space as a single hard drive, or the Cloud, can store millions of documents.
8. Improved Customer Service
Searching for files while a customer waits on the phone is not an efficient process. When digital documents can be found instantaneously by keyword search, customer service can greatly improve.
9. Improved Document Security
Paper documents are not as secure as you might think. It’s pretty simple to access file’s in an office, even if there are locks on individual filing cabinets, they are usually not hard to break. Electronic security systems that require passwords track when documents are accessed as well as who accessed them and exactly what changes were made.
10. Disaster Recovery Strategy
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If your organization keeps most of it’s information on paper, the threat of fire or water damage should be a serious concern. Electronic documents can be easily backed up and stored offsite or in the cloud, keeping documents safe if a disaster occurs and allowing for quick recovery.