In a BBC news feature from 2012, the author pointed out that despite
existing for 40 years as a concept, the widespread reality of an
entirely “paperless office” had yet to materialise. The average
administrative worker uses 10,000 sheets of paper a year, and 6800 of
them are considered to be a waste. But there are some ways you can
drastically reduce your reliance on paper printouts for business
purposes. As well shrinking your carbon footprint, the following
practices can lower overheads and spur greater business efficiency
Nobody likes receiving spam, but if you’re looking to inform existing
customers of new products or offers, then a well-designed, relevant
email campaign is the way to go. Services like MailChimp and AWeber give
you the option of sending out emails with attractive pre-designed
templates, segmenting recipients according to their interests.
Designing an HTML email template in-house is another option if you are
looking for greater flexibility. Always keep in mind that your message
should have some potential value to those receiving it, to avoid being
lost amongst the noise, annoying potential clients.
The documents you need to send and receive for the day-to-day operation
of your business don’t always have to go via post. As well as the option
of emailing Word or PDF files, companies like Google and Zoho allow for
the sharing and editing of documents online, which can be downloaded and
printed if needed.
Enquire with your suppliers and customers which of them would be happy
to send and receive digital documents rather than paper. There may be
legal reasons (such as requiring a paper contract with an ink signature)
that they are unable to make the change. The more contacts you get on
board, the more paper you save.
Scanning and storing your paper documents online is a great way to
achieve fast and easy access to the information you need. OCR (Optical
character recognition) software can convert scanned images into text
files, to enable search by word or phrase. Cloud-based storage solutions
mean that you can grant secure file access to employees and clients,
wherever they are based.
Notes and reminders
Paper is an inefficient and wasteful method of keeping notes and
reminders. There are free programs such as Evernote and Onenote that do
a much better job. If you already have a Google account with Gmail, then
consider setting up reminders in the calendar app.
The option of searching by word or phrase and setting up timely
reminders is far superior to rummaging through piles of paper and old
Rethink business practices
Re-organise your workflow and business practices to cut out paper usage.
Think about what documents you generate or notes you make at each stage
of your workflow. For the most part, switching to a digital solution
will save you time, money and headaches.
Rather than referring to a notebook or sheets of paper when working,
consider investing in another monitor. Dual monitor setups are standard
in many modern businesses and have become accessible in recent years.
How SwiftCase helps
SwiftCase is a powerful business process management platform that can
drastically reduce the amount of paperwork your company produces.
Automatically generate digital invoices, statements, proposals and more
at the click of a button. Securely store all of your business documents
in the cloud. Make notes and reminders that are always attached to the
relevant tasks for easy reference.
If you’re interested in a free, no-obligation demonstration, get in touch today.