5 Steps to A Paperless Office13. October 2021
Digitization is a topic that every company has to deal with in order to remain competitive. The switch to a paperless office represents the first big step towards the digital transformation of the entire company. This step entails many advantages, such as time and cost savings, flexible working models and greater efficiency for your employees. In order to successfully implement this project, our IT Solutions partner Kutzner Process Optimization shares the best practice
- Identify inefficient processes
Inefficient processes cost the company a lot of time and money. First, take an inventory. What is going well, what is not? Ask yourself which processes are prone to errors, take a long time, use a lot of paper, are repeated very often, etc. Your customers can also provide information about inefficient processes. What do they criticize? Simply by working through these criteria, you will need digitization in some areas. Now it is up to you to make a choice. But first start with a business area and digitize your company step by step.
- Set goals
When you have defined the first processes that you want to digitize, set goals. What should be achieved by digitizing the respective process? The more precisely these are defined, the easier it is to create workflows and select the right software.
- Adapt hardware and software
A digital workplace for every employee is a prerequisite for a paperless office. How this has to be designed depends on the respective activities and work models (should it be possible to work from the home office, for example?).
- When implementing a paperless office, there is no getting around a document management system (DMS). It is what makes structured and, above all, digital work with and on documents possible.
- Last but not least, you still have to decide whether you want to use a cloud solution or set up your own server. Both approaches have their advantages and disadvantages and it always depends on your own needs which one is right for you. For small and medium-sized companies, however, working in the cloud is usually the better option.
- Digitize documents
As soon as you have decided on your software and set it up, inform your partners about the changeover and request regular documents such as invoices in digital form. With the digitization of in-house mail, a big step towards a paperless office has already been taken. Now, however, the existing documents still have to be digitized in paper form. These have to be scanned in one by one, named accordingly and stored in the DMS. You can then destroy the originals of most documents. Caution! Exceptions are those documents, the original of which must be kept due to a legal requirement, such as tax returns, court judgments and contracts.
- Create and review workflows
Build up digital workflows with the help of a workflow management system and replace your previous analogue workflows. This defines the sequence of work processes, responsibilities can be assigned and automated work steps are interwoven. This guarantees both a high level of transparency and high quality of your processes, which saves time and money.
After setting up and implementing your workflows, you should continue to observe them in order to identify any need for optimization.
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