Paperless Offices Help to Prevent Climate Change

Wadih Pazos October 1, 2021

Paperless Offices Help to Prevent Climate Change
Document Management
Blog
In many ways, the concept of establishing a paperless workplace and implementing document management software has revolutionized the way we work today. Not only have offices benefited from the extensive space, time, and money saved, but the world is thousands of trees richer. As studies on the positive environmental ramifications of going paperless continue to surface, a small business can quickly adopt a new marketing point and green outlook on how business is conducted today.

Paperless technology over the years

While environmental organizations often find themselves pitted against pollution caused by larger business, the two sides have joined for good regarding the mutual benefits of paperless document management. However, it’s been a long road getting to where digital document technology is today, and the current positive outlook would not be possible without electronic document imaging.

Green Biz, an industry blog, reported that the concept of a paperless workplace has been in the works since 1975, but paper use in the office actually increased over the next twenty years into the 1990s. Writer Amy Westervelt said that there are a few different factors that have fostered paperless technology into 2014, including the economic downturn of the late 2000s, climate change awareness and the vast advancement of effective document management software.

As the need for the tactile piece of paper decreases and software becomes more intuitive, eliminating paper has benefited businesses struck by the recession of the 2000s by placing a number of cloud services beneath one helpful service provider. As a result, it has increased workers’ flexibility to work from home. The pros of being a paperless entity don’t end here – according to studies from the World Wildlife Fund and The Paperless Project, small businesses that go paperless are helping a massive fight against climate change.

Workplace efficiency and saving trees with one action

A Loyola University Maryland study indicated that it takes one 15-year-old tree to produce half a box of paper and the average office uses about two pounds of paper every day. By converting to a paperless workplace, an entire tree is saved annually for every person employed on average, not to mention the enormous expense saved by the business itself.

The World Wildlife Fund has presented similar data and encourages paperless document management – it even uses a paperless system to manage its large membership base, and has vowed to never send a member a piece of paper mail. The Paperless Project, expanding on this research and activism, noted that the average office employee spends over 30 percent of his or her time looking for information in file cabinets or browsing multiple hard drives instead of using cloud services to increase electronic workflow.

On the whole, as long as a small business is making the most of its document management software, there’s no limit to the positive change that can roll out as a result. The Paperless Project reported that when employees leave a business, they take 70 percent of their knowledge with them – by implementing a cloud-based electronic workflow system, a company stands to save the world around itself and increase productivity in ways it didn’t know possible.

Wadih Pazos

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

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