There’s something rather mystical about the idea of running an organization without the danger of paper cuts covering your hands and disorganized filing cabinets taking up most of your office space. Cutting down on paper in day to day business can seem like a daunting task, but by applying the simple idea of yin and yang, transitioning to a paperless office can actually be extremely simple.
In Chinese philosophy, the concept of "yin and yang", is used to describe how seemingly opposite or contrary forces are interconnected and interdependent in the natural world. Similarly, your business wants to go paperless, but needs to continue to deal with all of the paper coming in from clients, vendors, etc. Just like recognizing that there will always be a bit of evil in every good, you will always find a bit of paper mixed in to your paperless process. The trick is to find the right balance.
Go Paperless Internally First
Striking the right balance is important to achieving the most efficient document management process for your company. Generally the best way to do this is to use a phased approach. Start by going paperless internally. By using an electronic document management system you can eliminate all of your internal paper forms relatively quickly. Templates for these documents are stored in the system as digital files that can be accessed by authorized employees. They can then modify the templates, fill out the forms on their computer and save the completed files back to the system. Many cloud-based systems also include paperless workflow features like real-time versioning for online collaboration, browser-based annotations for review, electronic signatures for approval and document portals for secure file sharing. All of your internal file management processes can now be completed quicker and cheaper without the need for paper!
Phase In Paperless Conversion For External Documents
Once you have transitioned to electronic files for your most frequently used forms and documents, the next step is to deal with the paper coming in to the company. Many times clients and vendors will not offer an option to do business paperlessly. You will still receive your paper invoices week after week and you can't count on these companies to change their processes any time soon. So how do you get rid of those huge, disorganized filing cabinets when you still have all this paper coming in? The secret is document imaging. Basically, you can plop an entire multi-page file on your scanner and send it directly to your document management system. The system will allow you to split the file into separate documents and tag each with metadata properties used to file it and then to later retrieve it. Many systems also allow you to set up automated alerts for upcoming due dates, expiring documents, etc. The beauty about this process is that you no longer need to hang on to that hard copy. Your paper files have now joined all of your electronic files in the same system and can be easily tracked, managed and shared.
By using a phased approach to going paperless and striking the right balance during your transition process, your entire organization can save valuable time and money while simultaneously reducing paper. DynaFile is a scan-to-cloud solution that offers all of the features mentioned above and so much more. If you would like to learn more about going paperless in your business, Contact us today for a free consultation and a live demo.