Five ways to transition to a paperless business

May 28, 2020

With operating costs now front of mind, many businesses are the seizing opportunity to go paperless after the recent shakeup brought about by Covid-19.

Offering both environmental and operating efficiencies, eliminating paperwork within an enterprise saves time, improves the eco-credentials of a business and also facilitates the new remote working environment.

Here are five ways to transition to a paperless business and embrace the benefits involved.

The paperless business push

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When Covid-19 turned the business world on its head a few months ago, many enterprises began carefully examining new ways to improve their bottom line in addition to facilitating a remote workforce. One of the big trends which emerged was a rethink when it came to our reliance on paperwork.

With more and more businesses forced to operate in a virtual rather than real-world environment, digital documentation and processes became a necessity.

Covid-19 might have spurred on the paperless push, but long before that many businesses were beginning to evaluate its potential on environmental grounds. This trend has been accelerated in recent times, courtesy of a conscious consumer looking to see the brands they patronise actioning eco-friendly strategies.

Paperless business benefits

Eliminating extraneous paperwork in business offers benefits in efficiency, cost, and time management.

For the business, it saves staff time by ensuring all information is at hand and digitally searchable (rather than found in filing cabinets), it cuts down on the storage costs and space required to store paperwork, and reduces the ongoing costs of buying printers, ink and paper.

Meanwhile, digital record-keeping offers opportunity, allowing businesses to capture valuable customer data like email addresses or mobile phone numbers, which can then be utilised for marketing or customer loyalty.

For customers, offering digital rather than paper-based services offers convenience. For example, it allows them to sign documents digitally and remotely, receive bills and receipts electronically, and track transactions and interactions in the digital rather than physical world.

In a more general sense, going paperless also reinforces a brand’s environmental commitment. It provides very real evidence that an enterprise is looking to reduce waste and their environmental footprint at a time when the conscious consumer is on the rise.

In fact in 2019, Australia’s Monash University found 92 per cent of customers believe sustainable business practices should be standard.

Five ways to go paperless in business

paperless-business

Transitioning to a paperless business might sound like a major undertaking, but the reality is many of the tools that facilitate the shift are readily available and often already employed within a business.

From virtual document signing to mobile Point of Sale, the transition from the physical to the digital has been steadily occurring for years.

If your business is now actively looking to embrace the trend, here are five areas to consider…

 

  • Visitor management
    Visitor sign-in books might have been the way of the past, but they are far from efficient. Not only are paper-based visitor sign-in systems tedious to fill out for customers, they also create a paper trail that requires double handling, is wasteful and takes up storage space.
    With features like ID scanning, cameras, and badge printing, automated visitor management is far more efficient. It can also allow guests to pre-register for events and helps ensure all induction and safety training is completed prior to a visitor entering the site.

 

  • Digital receipts
    Just as the digital wallet and contactless card payments are becoming a mainstay of the post-Covid-19 world, so too are digital receipts.
    Digital receipts allow a consumer to receive their payment information instantly via SMS on their smart phone or by email. In the process, they allow a business to capture valuable information about their customer.

 

  • mPOS
    Mobile Point of Sale software and hardware offers a suite of tools to accommodate the paperless business. From staff time clocking to inventory tracking and marketing tools, the major players of the mPOS software world ensure the most critical business tools are all provided in one easy to use space, which can also be accessed remotely.

 

  • Document signing
    Whether your business offers real estate services, legal advice or is a medical practice, documents and contracts have traditionally consumed a vast amount of paper. Now new tools like DocuSign allow clients to virtually and legally sign important documentation.
    Over the past few months when face-to-face contact has been limited, this technology has proved a critical tool in business, but its use is likely to continue as organisations further realise the benefits of going virtual.

 

  • Electronic billing and invoicing
    Online banking has transformed the way businesses pay bills, and many suppliers now offer the option of digital billing or emailed invoicing. In addition, businesses can also transform their hard copy invoices into electronic records through apps such as Invoicify which integrate with mPOS and accounting software.

The final word

Covid-19 has radically changed the way we do business. Yet within challenge there is opportunity. One of the big opportunities emerging from a focus on efficiency and virtual interaction is the reduction of paperwork in business.

You can learn more about paperless visitor management systems here, and mPOS software here, or browse our range of tablet and iPad stands that enhance the paperless experience.

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