On your marks, get set, go: How to become a paperless business

Looking for some helpful hacks to get rid of all those piles of paper around your workplace? Look no further. Here, we share some simple strategies to convert your business into a truly paperless affair.

First, though, why bother? Going paperless is proven to help you save time, money and trees. It’s also shown to boost staff productivity and give your business a boost in the reputational stakes. No wonder so many businesses are on a quest to get rid of paper.

Yet, when you’re surrounded by paper-based processes, filing cabinets, printers, paper shredders and more, it can be hard to know where to start.

On your marks: Adopt a paperless mindset

The first and most important thing to do is find your paperless mindset. Become a champion for change. Reflect on the benefits of going paperless and take heart from this simple fact: you don’t need paper to do business.

Just think, the wheels of business (largely) stayed in motion this year – even with everyone working from home, no printers or paper in sight. The pandemic proved that we don’t need filing cabinets, nor do we need to print out sales agreements or contracts, to keep things ticking over.

Get set: Choose your platform

To get rid of paper, you’re going to have to replace it with something. That something takes the form of a digital platform like Docusign.

When choosing your digital platform to manage agreements, look for one that easily integrates with whichever productivity tools you use to generate documents and agreements. Having already invested in other solutions – such as Microsoft Office, Salesforce or Google – you’ll want something that seamlessly and securely slots into these solutions. Docusign has over 350 integrations with all the leading CRM and business productivity solutions out there today, making it incredibly easy for you to get up and running.

Also look for one that’s built for the way that business gets done today. Mobility is a must – you want to make it as easy as possible for people to sign your paperwork from any device, anywhere in the world. Security is crucial, too. You need a platform that comes with water-tight encryption. And, depending on your type of business, you may need the flexibility to extend the platform to suit your needs – for example, the ability to collect payments.

Goes without saying that Docusign ticks all of these boxes. Start a free trial to see for yourself.

Go: Digitise your agreements

With your platform in place, it’s time to get cracking on your quest to abolish paperwork. Here are some tips to get started:

  1. Get organised Your first goal is to tackle the mounds of paperwork around your office. You could set up an interdepartmental challenge to see which team can scan and shred their piles of paper first. Or, it may pay to hire a temp to do this job for you – the money you’ll save on storage down the track could justify this expense. Just remember, you’ll need a cloud-based document management system for all these scanned files.  
  2. Be vocal You’ll need to let your employees know about your goals. Communication and leadership are key here. Share resources like It Pays to Go Paperless and hold training sessions on how to use Docusign. Every employee involved in the agreement process should be given the opportunity to learn how to use the new tool.  
  3. Hold a team challenge

To kick things off, challenge each department to digitise one document or agreement that they print regularly. It could be a super simple agreement, or maybe it’s one that’s painful and tedious to reproduce each time. Not only will this show them how easy it is to get started with Docusign, but they will very quickly get a taste for the speed and convenience of this digital approach.  

  1. Measure the impact Pin up a leader board in the communal kitchen that tallies how much paper each department is saving by digitising all these documents. Employees will love to see how much paper – and how many trees – they are saving. And those that hold the purse strings will love to see the impact on the bottom line. As well as these easily measurable metrics, don’t forget to evaluate the less tangible benefits, such as productivity gains, time savings and a better customer experience.  

Want to learn more?

Register for 'Paperless Business' - a live event where we'll show you how going paperless can save you time, money and trees. 

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