Using Software to Achieve Paper-Free Offices

In a 1975 Business Week article, Vincent E. Giuliano predicted that our use of paper would fall rapidly by 1980 and that by the year 1990, most information would be stored electronically — practically eliminating the need for paper. The capabilities of electronic equipment and software used today is beyond what anyone might have dreamt possible in 1975 but, unfortunately, we are yet to achieve the paperless office Giuliano that predicted. In fact, only 1% of EU businesses have achieved this goal.

We may have missed Giuliano’s mark, but it looks likely that the question is not “if” but “when” for the paper-free office. The remaining holdouts cling to paper for reasons that are emotional and historical rather than logical. Technology has rapidly evolved to help businesses facilitate everyday processes without relying on fallen trees. If you still have a sentimental attachment to the many files and folders claiming space in your office, here are just a few of the many reasons why you should be working towards diminishing your paper consumption.

Environmental concerns

It’s not just the trees that are felled to make paper, the environment also suffers when this paper is physically transported via fossil fuels to your office. There has been a 400% increase in worldwide paper consumption in the past forty years and discarded paper is a huge component of most landfills. All the while, 18 million acres of forest are being destroyed each year for more.

Even legal professionals are moving past paper. A significant amount of paper is only being used and printed in order to obtain a ‘wet ink’ signature, though they are not actually a legal requirement. Using digital signatures solves the signature issue while being kinder to the environment.

Reduced costs

Every company is concerned with their bottom line. Recent research conducted by Loudhouse revealed that the average British office worker uses an incredible 10,000 sheets of paper per year. Total paper usage per employee amounts to approximately four £10 boxes of paper, which, which when multiplied by your entire workforce, amounts to a substantial amount of money.

Reiterating the company’s paperless policy and strictly enforcing it will greatly reduce corporate costs, especially when you take into consideration the energy saved in the form of fax machines, scanners and printers as well as the reduced delivery costs of sending important documents.

Security is amplified

There are not many measures that can be put in place to ensure that a paper-based system is safe and secure. In fact, security usually ends up being little more than a lock on a filing cabinet. Using software as an alternative (along with the appropriate security measures) reduces the chances of important documents being stolen, lost or altered.

Information is more accessible

Offices relying heavily on paper inevitably spend a significant amount of time sifting through files, folders and cabinets to obtain the information they are looking for. The simple fact of the matter is, software will always be a faster way to retrieve information. At a press of a button, information can be recalled, altered and saved to a number of locations. Teams across an organisation (or even the world) can simultaneously work on the same document in real-time, preventing the need for multiple paper copies.

For those wanting to make the change from a paper-based office to one that is more efficient, productive and forward-thinking, it is necessary to consider the nature of your business when choosing your software package. Debt management software, property portfolio management software, claim management software, legal case management software and direct debt management software all have something different to offer and can catapult your business in a number of significant ways.

To find out more about how Logican can help to make your office paperless, get in touch with the Logican team who will be happy to help you digitise your business.

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