Schools Embracing Paperless Offices with More Frequency

Wadih Pazos October 25, 2013

Schools Embracing Paperless Offices with More Frequency
Document Management
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There has been a lot of buzz lately regarding how many corporations are implementing document management software within the workplace. Many administrators are doing just this to de-clutter their offices, free up floor space once occupied by clunky file cabinets, make document and invoice sharing a much faster and easier process and numerous other advantages.

However, what kinds of companies are we talking about here? There’s no simple answer to that question, because any business could easily make good use of electronic document imaging, from a one-man startup in the retail industry to a massive corporation that’s a big player in the financial sector. Across every vertical, virtually any business could benefit greatly from a paperless office.

A number of academic administrators are also beginning to realize this as the school year kicks into high gear. The late summer/early fall can be a very hectic time at schools, whether they’re preschools or universities. Think of all the papers that have to be processed by the front office, teachers and students, from permission slips to academic records to forms for new pupils and so on.

This is why many leaders in the academic field are looking to take a page out of the books of corporate executives and install electronic workflow within schools. This not only drags such institutions into the 21st century, but it also stands to make the lives of almost everyone involved easier as well.

Students in Michigan engaging more

Detractors might assume that if kids aren’t studying from books or filling out forms, they might not be getting a good education. After all, the student who came before them likely had a more traditional experience and many were successful. However, the fact is that this technology is now available to us, so there are a number of administrators who are now well versed in best practices for file management and workflow.

This is true in Kent, Mich., where the Kent Innovation High School has gone completely paperless. According to the School News Network, in many cases, digitizing has allowed teenagers to take a more hands-on approach and engage more with the subject matter. As many business employees know, using a digital system means that they no longer have to spend extraneous time on a number of administrative tasks.

Plus, much like in a corporate atmosphere, the news source said that teenagers are held accountable for their own work, which teaches them good practices for the future. Also, they’re learning a lot about how to incorporate new media and platforms.

Minnesota paving the way for future success

The Republican-Leader also echoed these sentiments, noting that since Fillmore Central High School has decided to digitize, many parents are recognizing the fact that by embracing new technology, they can set their kids up to be more comfortable in the tech-savvy society of the future. This has been made much easier since the district now supplies every high school student with their own laptop.

“That is how they are learning. If we say we are just staying pencil and paper we will be limiting possibilities in development and collaborative skills in the future,” school district Superintendent Richard Keith told the newspaper. “When they are out of school, they are learning through electronic devices.”

Students themselves seemed interested in the possibilities that going paperless presents. For instance, the Republican-Leader reported that a number of students said they would be able to collaborate on projects easier, draft documents and other advantages that office workers will also likely be able to enjoy.

Wadih Pazos

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

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