Kyle McShamish, an employee of All Paper All The Time, Inc. (APATT), was discovered in the company’s corporate archives by a HR records administrator after getting lost in the miles of files almost 18 months ago.
McShamish survived on snacks, drinks and lattes left by various administrators who trekked across town to the storage warehouse on a daily basis to manually add new paper documents into the elaborate, multi-story filing system.
“I could hear the shuffling of feet and files, but just couldn’t find my way to help,” McShamish said.
The company’s CEO, Frank Woodseye, denied the claims, saying it was “a bunch of malarkey.”
However, an investigation confirmed APATT has been fostering a heavy, paper-based work environment for years. The Lead Investigator Mariam Seeall said, “The situation could have been avoided entirely if the company had simply scanned its records.”
As a result of their investigation, paper regulators announced today that they had fined APATT $10.25 million for failing to adhere to digital record-keeping requirements.
Woodseye says he has “no idea” why going digital gets so much buzz, as his assistant handed him a printed-out email for reading. “Paper is still the future. The media claims digitization is key. Well, I can’t find that key anywhere on my typewriter,” he continued.
The investigation showed that Woodseye’s long-standing analog philosophy has created a paper-based work environment and business model that goes against every information-management best practice out there. Seeall cited specific examples of employees using documents as drink coasters and mailed-in envelopes cobbled together as window shades. While touring the APATT office, she observed one woman using a stack of paper files to balance her makeup mirror as she applied mascara. When asked what the files contained, the staffer excitedly announced she wasn’t sure but proclaimed, “What a cool hack, right? New content coming TikTok!”
Perhaps one of the most egregious acts involved the company discovering that one employee had actually been trying to “compost” confidential information in his neighborhood pet-waste bin for years. No action whatsoever was taken to resolve the issue. In fact, leadership double-downed on its paper-based mentality after an employee engagement survey revealed that APATT staff experienced their greatest feelings of joy when throwing paper documents directly into the trash.
As for McShamish, his experience in the records archive has driven him to launch an aggressive, grass-roots digital transformation initiative at the company, where he is still employed and now heads up the newly created APATT Paper Police Department with the help of Docufree.
(Happy April Fools’ Day! While the story above is fictional, the challenges paper-based work environments create are very real.)