Leaders Must Plan Ahead to Go Paperless

Wadih Pazos October 25, 2013

Leaders Must Plan Ahead to Go Paperless
The decision to embrace electronic workflow and go paperless is something that shouldn’t be an off-the-cuff choice. A decent amount of time and planning needs to go into thinking about digitizing, and administrators need to ask whether this is the best option for their business.

Luckily, however, the answer to this question is almost always going to be yes. What company wouldn’t want to experience cost savings, freed up office space, easier access to records no matter where workers are, and plenty of other benefits that would add to productivity. If the technology’s there, reasonably priced and simple enough to implement, where’s the issue?

While this decision does mean immediate upfront costs and a decent amount of effort to make the paperless office a reality, the advantages of leveraging a document management system are too big to pass up. But again, going into it, managers need a plan.

Investing in better technology

One of the biggest reasons managers need to plan is that employees might need better computers and other devices to view the records. They’re likely to be using such machines more often than they had before, and leaders need to decide whether or not the gadgets are up to snuff.

The Daily Chronicle reported that this was a concern in the DeKalb School District after administrators decided to go digital. As such, local leaders plan to roll out paperless technology in 2016, which gives them ample time to prepare. One of the first steps will be making sure there are enough devices in classrooms on which students can do their work.

However, leaders noted that they couldn’t plan too far ahead, and business owners should be aware of this. Since the new curriculum won’t be in place until 2016, they can’t buy the new devices now because the technology that appears in the next three years will likely be more advanced.

Chaos without a plan in place

The only alternative to making a digitization schedule is not planning at all, which could have strong detracting factors in a corporate setting. Let’s say that all employees are on board and are outfitted with the right technology, but there’s no set tactic on how to place individual records online. Workers would, therefore, be dispatched to scan in whatever documents they want, in any order.

A situation like this would likely result in some papers being missed and destroyed by accident. Moreover, some records could be duplicated, taking up unnecessary space. The result could be chaotic, leaving the company unorganized and in trouble.

Wadih Pazos

Wadih founded PairSoft and PaperSave, and he currently advises non-profits on business process improvement and technology.

View all posts by Wadih Pazos
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