A paperless office is a great thought but in reality, a well executed document management solution is a better fit for your business.
Is there even such a thing as a paperless office?
We live in an ever changing world. It wasn’t long ago that computers took over the office environment and ever since that moment there has been talk about the day when offices would go paperless. Everyone wants to do their part to save the environment, reduce waste and possibly increase office place efficiency, but could an office really ever be paperless? Could there ever really be a time where you wouldn’t need to hold a contract, print a document, read a report or even just resist the urge to hold on to a tangible, hard copy, “old school” printed document?
We have seen the reduction of paper mail with the advent of email over the last two decades but it took email almost 15 years to go mainstream and it’s not like paper mail stopped when that happened. We communicate through so many different channels these days, it is not too hard to imagine a time in the future where documents are all managed digitally or electronically. A time where everyone has some sort of tablet with them at all times, with the ability to sign, store and share documents with relative ease. That may or may not sound appealing to you as a transition in the future but the fact of the matter is that for now there is a need for paper, printers, copiers and everything else that goes along with them. We can do what we can to use less paper but “paperless” is a long way down the road, if it ever even happens so don’t go throwing out your printers and copiers just yet.
What to do in the meantime?
Technology has come a long way. Everyone is talking about the cloud this and the cloud that. There is instant communication all around us and yet some businesses are still not able to easily store and share documents among their employees in a secure fashion. It’s almost like they are stuck in the dark ages or at least the 90’s!
You might even be one of those businesses. You might have walls lined with filing cabinets with hard copies of every single document you have ever printed, signed or received since the day you opened your doors for business. Sure there is some type of system in place for how they are stored but how about searching through those documents. How do you find something without having to get up from your desk, thumb through a bunch of files and hope that the last person who used what you are looking for put it back in the right place?
I understand there is a need for some of the paperwork especially in the legal, financial and medical industries. There are a ton of regulatory hurdles stopping these businesses from fully digitizing their records but this doesn’t have to be the case for everyone and it doesn’t mean that those industries can’t benefit from digitizing their documents either. You could easily take control of your entire document library and put it at the tips of your workforce. They could access the right document no matter where they are located. All while making sure all of the necessary security is in place to protect your valuable customer information.
Welcome to a comprehensive document management solution
It is easier than you think to take control of your document management nightmares. A comprehensive document management solution allows you to not only control your existing documents by scanning and digitizing the documents but it allows you to monitor new printing, manage overall print expenses and so much more. As part of your document management solution you could include a managed print solution, reduce your print expenses and increase workplace efficiency while increasing the security of your most vital documents.
Think about it; what happens if your business is in a fire or flood and all that paper gets ruined. What if a careless employee loses an important document or maybe that intern you hired was too busy checking her Facebook status to notice that she was filing things in the wrong location. Wouldn’t it be nice to not have to worry about any of that? Wouldn’t you sleep better knowing that everything is backed up offsite, available remotely through the cloud (internet) and encrypted for maximum security.
What are you waiting for?
What if you were able to understand your document workflows so intimately that you could eliminate wasted time and productivity. These are all benefits to a comprehensive document management solution and you are well behind the 8-ball if you have not at least considered it once.
Sure there are some costs associated with setting it up but those can be insignificant when compared to the peace of mind that comes with having a document management solution in place and will seem even less significant if ever the need arises to reproduce any of those documents due to catastrophe or any other major peril. Insurance might reimburse you financially for tangible losses but there is no indemnity when it comes to ruined information.
You are probably already backing-up your computers right? Basically you are just protecting the data inside the computer, why then wouldn’t you protect your data outside of the computer as well? Document management seems like a no brainer when you think of it like that.