Do you long for a paper-free office but are not sure where to start? After all, the benefits of digitizing documents and communications are now well-understood: speed, accuracy and better productivity can all be achieved by reducing the amount of physical paper changing hands in organizations.
A paper document needs to be taken out of a folder, physically read by a human, and manually taken on to the next stage of a process. When information needs to be re-entered into a system, errors can creep in, destroying the organization’s capability of having one golden version of the truth.
Once paper is digitized, a document can be used as a single source of data, no matter who is accessing it and for what purpose. Digital documents are more conducive to collaborative working than paper, especially when people are working remotely or in different locations from other team members.
So it may be that your decision to reduce paper is triggered by a specific event, such as an office move or redesign, a merger or acquisition, a change in legislation or an external event such as the COVID-19 pandemic.
But before simply ditching your filing cabinets and emptying out your staff’s desk drawers, it pays to think about what paper-based processes you still have, why you have them, and which teams make use of them.
Does the paper create an action that is linked to it, and can that be replaced with a digital process that is more efficient? By carrying out a detailed audit, you can work out exactly which paper documents you can get rid of, where it’s safe to digitize and begin understanding how much space you can reclaim.
Your audit will undoubtedly show that one of the best ways to reduce paper is to eliminate it at source, when it enters your organization in the mailroom. Mailroom automation, or digitizing paper on entry to an organization, means staff do not have to handle incoming paperwork at all.
Mailroom outsourcing means you can divert post to a third-party PO box number attached to a processing center where it is opened, scanned, classified, and routed to the right team.
Digital documents give you an audit trail, can be searched for and accessed by authorized members of the team, easily shared with customers and partners, or routed and processed using automation techniques.
A digital mailroom is the foundation you need to kick-start your digital transformation journey and gives you a basis of better working practices.
Whatever the reason for deciding to reduce paper in your organization, the good news is that resources are at hand. Docufree can help you with your business case, help you to identify which documents or processes would benefit from digitization and assist you with retention to ensure you are only keeping documents that are required for compliance and are ready to destroy documents that are no longer needed.
If you are interested in eliminating paper with a Digital Mailroom, please contact us today.