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Paperless is Possible: How to start eliminating paper

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Here at Metafile, we firmly believe that implementing a document management solution and automating your paper processes is the best way to eliminate annoying stacks of documents at your company. But we also know that, while you may want to start reducing the number of paper documents your company handles, there’s a chance that you’re not quite ready to commit to a fully paperless ERP solution yet.

Applying a change as big as taking your financial processes paperless is an intimidating undertaking, but there are some small steps you can take to start eliminating paper from your office before implementing new software.

Lifehack, one of the premier lifestyle and productivity blogs on the web, highlighted steps that an office can take to help dig themselves out of the piles of paper they’ve found themselves buried beneath. How much paper can be reduced or eliminated varies depending on the company. While some may find it easier to start recycling old documents, many companies such as law firms or hospitals may have a more difficult time parting with paper records.

Here are some of the steps that we believe your company can take to start going paperless and prepare for the implementation of a document management solution:

  • Set clear goals and objectives. Do you want to eliminate 25 percent of the paper in your office? 50 percent? 100 percent? Having a distinct objective will help you know which steps you need to take to start the paperless process. Also, make sure you have a specific date in mind for when you want to meet your goal. Make sure your employees know when the date is, and that you set it far enough in advance so that your employees ca
    n start implementing changes and converting documents gradually.
  • Lifehack recommends establishing an electronic records retention system. While this can be MetaViewer document management solution implemented with Microsoft Dynamics ERP, you may want to prepare yourself for such a big change and start off by creating a file naming system that sorts files chronologically. By simply naming a document based on the year, month, day and time to the nearest minute, you can easily keep track of when documents were received and revised.
  • Spread the word! Let your clients and customers know that you are going paperless. The Going Green initiative is extremely popular and most people will find it great that you’re taking steps to reduce your company’s environmental footprint. This also gives you a chance to request electronic documents from suppliers and customers rather than paper copies.
  • Get comfortable throwing things away. If you don’t think you’ll ever need to look at that email again, or if you already have an electronic copy of that receipt, or if that invoice is 13 years old, you can probably toss it. Think about how often you actually go through the boxes and filing cabinets of old records. Don’t be afraid of the recycling bin, it will likely become your best friend.
  • Start thinking about a document management solution. Like the changes that have been happening in your office? Ready to take the next steps to going completely paperless? Start looking into a document management solution that will make the paperless process even easier. Automate your paper processes, scan paper documents into your ERP, eliminate manual data entry and so much more.

Topics: AP Automation, Paperless AR, Paperless ERP, Paperless HR, Document Management