More companies see the convenience of going paperless as the corporate world delves deeper into the digital realm.
A few, however, may still be on the cusp of phasing into a more paperless environment. That may keep them from enjoying lower costs and decluttered office spaces.
Fortunately, your office can make the shift by utilizing digital tools that are very much available.
This article lists and discusses feasible ways your startup can go paperless:
Set Printing Restrictions.
One way to seamlessly transition into a paperless startup office is by setting up paper printing restrictions. You can minimize printing with your fax machine and use digital documents more.
That keeps you from stocking paperwork that eats up your shelf space, providing more leeway to efficiently store and organize your documents. It also lessens the need to do manual audits, which can be time-consuming.
You can start by limiting printing to essential documents and using digital files more often. Although it can seem challenging initially, having a clear mindset should keep you and your team members on track.
Once you switch to a fully digital setup, you can dispose of your paper printers or keep them on hand if you need to print occasionally.
Remember that faxing remains an essential office practice in certain industries. For the best practices on efficient use and practical questions like ‘how to get a fax number,’ consult the experts today.
Use Cloud-Based Tools.
You can store your essential files in cloud storage as digital copies. That eliminates the need to keep your information on hard copies that occupy your office shelves.
Authorized personnel can access digital files in a shared cloud storage and transfer copies into their hard drives without printing them, which is convenient.
Another great thing about cloud storage is that it provides an ideal place to back up all essential documents. It’s an easy way to secure data from theft and mishandling.
Furthermore, cloud-based tools let you avoid possible data loss due to malfunctioning hardware drives. You can access documents as long as you have an internet connection.
Utilize Digital Notetaking.
Digital notetaking involves recording information on electronic platforms instead of paper. You can either type notes or use voice recording features.
From there, you can use mind-mapping apps to create flow charts representing data more comprehensively.
Digital notetaking is less high-concept or challenging than you think. You can use the tips below to make the process much easier for you:
- Use bold text or subheadings to separate topics and sections.
- Use short phrases in bullet point form for more concise and easy-to-read notes.
- Focus on noting the essential details and cut out the fluff.
- Organize your notes using folders and categories to access them later easily.
- Section the messages according to dates, numbers, and names.
This form of notetaking is slightly nuanced from traditional notetaking. But it all represents the same thing—capturing essential details quickly. Keep these tips in mind to keep the task seamless.
Use Digital Signature Stamps.
Do you wish you didn’t have to manually print documents to set up signatures?
Thanks to digital signature stamps, now you can.
Traditional document signing involves putting ink on actual paper, which requires printing and can be costly. Digital signatures let you bypass that.
Digital signature stamps are also as official as traditional signatures since they comply with various regulations, including the Uniform Electronics Transactions Act (UETA) and Electronic Signature in Global and National Commerce Act (ESIGN).
Use Electronic Billing And Invoicing Systems.
You can use an online billing system as part of your paperless startup.
Try liaising with your bank to send you electronic paperless statements. You may get rewards from those that appreciate customers going online. This practice also eliminates the need for paper-based invoice bills, smoothening your billing processes.
Digital electronic billing and invoicing also save printing time and are more secure ways to transfer financial information.
Consider using accounts payable automation (AP) software, as well. It provides numerous benefits that you can find helpful and complementary to your effort to create a paperless startup office.
For example, besides helping you minimize your carbon footprint, using AP software to automate invoicing and billing can improve your accuracy, cash flow, and financial information security.
Is It Time To Make The Switch?
Going paperless in your startup office is a commendable way of minimizing paper usage and becoming sustainable from the start.
But as appealing as this option seems, it helps to have the proper infrastructure, including digital devices and wireless internet connections. Now is a time as good as any to do it.