How to Minimize Paper Use in Your Business
A paperless office has long been the goal of many businesses. Not only is it more environmentally friendly, but it is also easier to organize due to less clutter and it can save money on printing services. While being completely paperless may not be possible in many industries, there are ways to cut down on the amount of paper in your office. The following are a few tips that can help.
Switch to electronic forms
A lot of paperwork in an office consists of "sign and forget it" style forms. These can be client release forms, product delivery forms, invoices, or really any other type of form your business uses on a regular basis. Fortunately, electronic signatures are considered binding and there really is no reason to keep a paper copy of forms you are likely never going to need again. You can purchase form and electronic signature software that will allow you to really hone in on the needs you must replace in any paperless system. Instead, switch to a program that allows you to generate and digitally sign these forms. There are additional benefits to this beyond the removal of paper and paper clutter. Digital forms are easy to store but they can still be accessed quickly if they are needed for reference. Further, if a client needs a copy you can email them one in minutes as opposed to spending hours finding it in a filing system, making copies, and mailing it.
Hire a document scanning service
Going digital with most of your documents as above can have one major challenge. If your office previously used paper, there will be the hassle of keeping client records together when some are on the old paper method and others are stored digitally. The key is to move all your forms and related paperwork to a digital copy. Doing this on your own can be time-consuming, so consider hiring a document scanning service such as Indigital Inc to complete the task. These services will come in, scan all the documents, and organize them as you desire into your preferred digital storage medium. Further, many scanning services will also handle the shredding and disposal of the documents so you don't have to worry about disposing of important or sensitive information safely.
While the above won't make an office completely paperless, it will cut down on the amount of paperwork considerably. In the end, you will end up saving money and needing less space for storage of paperwork.