How can your business move to a paperless future?
How can your business move to a paperless future?
In the past, all businesses were reliant on paper processes and printing for day-to-day operations. The emergence of new technologies over time, along with the more recent rise in remote and hybrid work, has greatly reduced paper consumption.
However, most businesses still make use of legacy paper-based systems and are yet to become completely paperless. Here are some of the benefits of going paperless, and ways your business can cut out paper once and for all.
Benefits of being paperless
Faster Access to Information
Moving paper documents to the Cloud ensures quick and easy access to any document for employees, from any device with an internet connection. Although some paperwork, such as employee contracts, may rarely be needed, it is significantly faster to search for the document in a well-organised cloud storage system, rather than a filing cabinet.
Reduced Environmental Impact
Businesses today are more aware of their environmental impact than ever before. For those actively working to reduce their carbon footprint, moving to a paperless future can have a significant impact. Not only are fewer trees cut down to create the paper; digitised processes also remove the requirement for sending paperwork, further reducing carbon emissions.
Simplify Disaster Recovery
If a business experiences a disaster, such as a fire or a flood, all their paper documents could be destroyed. In the past, disaster recovery would be enabled by having copies of all paper documents stored off-site. Although this makes it possible to recover the documents, it is much simpler to store digital copies of the documents with a cloud storage solution.
Tips for moving to a paperless future
Digitise Paper Documentation
To become paperless businesses must first digitise all of their current paper documentation. This typically entails scanning documents and then storing them digitally either on-premises or using a cloud storage solution. Depending on the size of the business, this can be a lengthy process. If a business has an extremely large number of paper documents, it may be beneficial to define the goals and scope of the digitisation process and only digitise paper documents created after a certain date to make it more manageable. During this process, businesses should also consider how they categorise and manage the digital documents to ensure it is easy for employees to find documents when needed.
Make use of Cloud Storage
Whilst there are many different storage solutions for digital documents, none are as versatile and cost-effective as cloud storage. With a cloud storage solution, employees can quickly and easily access files from any device with an internet connection. This makes it perfectly suited for remote or hybrid work. Also, with most cloud storage solutions, businesses only pay for the amount of storage required, making it possible to move from a CAPEX to an OPEX model. Cloud storage also has many other benefits, such as enabling simple disaster recovery, and reducing the risk of a cyberattack, if the solution is set up correctly.
Implement an eSignature Solution
Although many businesses have already digitised some of their processes, 82% of businesses still rely on paper agreements and contracts that are manually processed by employees. In order to move to a paperless future, businesses can implement an eSignature solution to eliminate the need for paper contracts. A comprehensive eSignature solution also enables businesses to streamline other processes and even track the status of a document in real-time. This reduces the chance of delays during projects and creates better customer experiences.
In order for businesses to become paperless, they must introduce several new technologies. To ensure success, it is essential that employees have training on how to use the technologies and the importance of reducing reliance on paper. For this reason, it is advisable for businesses to take a phased approach. Implement one technology at a time, whilst providing adequate training and documentation around how to use the technology effectively.
How Extech Cloud can help your business
If you want to move your business towards a paperless future, technology will play a major role. To ensure success, you need the right tools. That is where we can help. Drawing from our years of experience, we can recommend the best technology solutions for your specific needs, and implement them to help you take the next steps towards a paperless future. Contact us to find out more.
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