One of the most persistent notions around the office place is the one which resists going paperless, and instead clings to the safety and comfort of hard copy representation of many important documents. In most cases, there is no real business need for these paper documents, with the electronic version being sufficient.
Old Habits Die Hard
Even though the advantages of going paperless are undeniable, and the cost of all that paper is an unnecessary expense, there are still many who are intimidated by the implementation of new technologies and tend to avoid them simply because they are outside a comfort zone. Some company managers are even reluctant to implement paperless because of the notion that there will be an extraordinary cost associated with implementation of the process, and they don’t have the budget for it.The truth is, American companies spend upwards of $120 billion annually on printed forms, which become outdated as quickly as three months from their time of printing. That fact alone should be enough to convince a manager that paperless is a cost-effective technology solution, which is the most efficient and economical way to go.
Vulnerability of Paper
Although it’s not often thought about, paper documents are extremely vulnerable, and can have a major negative impact on a business if accidentally damaged or destroyed. It is estimated that a disastrous loss of a significant portion of a company’s physical records would result in the failure of more than 70% of such companies within a month.
This single statistic should speak volumes about the vulnerability of paper documents, and the risk they represent companies. For instance, a flood or fire happening at a company having all its important documents on paper copies could likely cause the complete failure of that company within a matter of weeks. By contrast, if the company’s records had been stored digitally and backed up, negative impact could be reduced significantly.
Benefits of Going Paperless
In a paperless environment, customer response time can be 7 times faster with an online document repository compared to physical documents.
The cumulative effect of this rapid response time is felt as a tremendous increase in customer service, and often in the business world, customer service is the one thing which differentiates companies offering the same services and products. In effect, going paperless can give you a competitive edge over your rivals.