We see climate change everywhere--on TV, in the newspaper, on our phones. Climate change is a hot button political issue for a reason. Chances are, you've asked yourself, "what can I do? It's going to happen no matter what."
But what if you could do something that dramatically benefited the environment and your business?
Paperless business systems don't only help the environment, but they also add convenience, remove the hassle, and increase savings. Here are ways you can incorporate paperless today.
The beginning of any process is always the hardest. Many companies neglect the paperless route simply because management doesn't start the initiative. Businesses might be prepared to turn the paperless corner, but management fails to give the directive.
Remember, companies' chain of command is top-down. If no one at the top leads the initiative to go paperless, the employees can't do much about it--set goals and expectations for each department. Introduce competition by implementing a rewards system. The point is, be the leader you're supposed to be and lead your company in the right direction.
After you lead the charge, the transition can be challenging. Make sure you make that transition as easy as possible by organizing your documents under one system.
Start by organizing the documents using the client's name, date, and other information. Delegate the work to different departments to ensure you're keeping accurate data. Then, set a goal for each department to finish so you can evaluate at once and get each department on the same page.
A huge factor in whether or not you're successful in going paperless is your system's ease of use. Another factor is making sure all of your employees are proficient in using the system.
Going paperless is detrimental to your company if you don't standardize the process and have employees who understand how to access documents. Obtain as many demonstrations and trials as you can and disseminate them to your employees.
Again, create goals for your employees to observe. Have them send a certified letter online as practice. For example, have each employee complete three training modules by the end of the week. Have your employees advance at a similar pace so you can obtain feedback as you progress instead of intermittently.
Switching your company to a paperless business system is a good start, but if your clients and partners don't abide by the same rules, it's not nearly as effective. Spread the word to your clients and partners that you prefer your documents, either emailed or scanned.
You don't have to be pushy. A simple, kindly-worded email suffices.
After you've gotten everyone on board, it's time to sit back, relax, and enjoy the fruits of your paperless business system. These benefits include helping the environment, saving money on business expenses, and having all of your documents in a company database.
What good is the new technology we have at our disposal if we choose to ignore its benefits? With email, scanners, and electronic databases, there's no excuse to remain in the old world of business papers.
Paperless business systems make business more convenient, more cost-effective, and they're better for the environment. What have you got to lose besides paper? Nothing.
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