Let me paint a terrifying mental picture for you: rusting, copper filing cabinets, falling apart, overstuffed and bulging with receipts and customer data. Best case scenario, all the important files are organized within folders within drawers. Worst case scenario, there are stray papers sticking out of the sides, making the office look like a hot mess. An even worse “worst case scenario,” the paper you are looking for has been gone for years without anyone knowing it was missing. Even with the best case scenario, it is still taxing work to find just the right file you are looking for. Sadly, with filing cabinets, there is no ‘Control F.’ A paper filled office creates more stress than necessary. In this digital driven age, more and more offices are transitioning to using electronic databases to store important files. If my one sentence horror story was not compelling enough, here are a few more practical reasons for making the office paperless.
- Free Space Makes for a Crisper, Cleaner Looking Office
Of course there are some files that must be stored in physical paper form, but there is no reasonable justification for keeping files in the office that you will ultimately shred in a few years. As the sheets of paper add up, they start to take up a considerable amount of space. There are endless possibilities to increase business productivity with the new space.
- Instant and Stress Free Access to Documents
Storing documents electronically greatly enhances the ease of access. With the use of tags and key words, digitalization completely eliminates the need to physically search for a document. Also without the need to sort through the countless documents, you also no longer need to make copies of documents to share them with clients or co-workers. Documents can be shared as email attachments and pulled up on mobile devices.
- Digitalization is Not as Scary as it Seems
One aspect of digitalization that deters companies is dreading the change from normality and the effort required to scan all the documents. Because of its increasing popularity, there are a ton of companies willing to do the scanning process and keep your documents secure. Outsourcing this job is very common.
- Electronic Files are Safe from Age and Destruction
Keeping physical documents poses a risk of losing everything in the case of a fire, flood, or other emergency. Even if no emergency occurs, keeping files backed up to the cloud ensures that they will not age, increases security in the case of a break in, and ensures that your documents are able to be restored if company documents are deleted or lost.
- Reduced Environmental Negative Impact
Going digital is not only about increasing work productivity. Mass paper usage with companies is a major contributor to the paper waste that fills 1/4 of all landfills. Going paperless increases your company’s presence as environmentally conscious, a perk for branding and the environment.