With more and more business applications being developed to allow companies to take advantage of going paperless with mobile technology, there’s no reason to continue relying on paper. In a 2016 survey, more than 80% of small and mid-size businesses said they want to cut paper out of their business processes.
Eliminating paper offers numerous benefits, and here are a few of the major ones.
1. Increase Efficiency by Removing Paper
Filling out forms, processing them, moving them, tracking, storing them; that's a lot of time and work. When your business depends on paper, it’s slowed down and made less efficient.
Without a digital process in place, data collected in the field on a paper form must be mailed or carried back to an office before it can be processed and used. And even then, it may need to be moved or sent multiple times to eventually reach the proper person or destination.
However, large organizations lose one document every 12 seconds, so those paper forms may never end up where they need to go.
2. Stop Duplicating Work
At some point, after the forms are collected, the information must be keyed into your system. If the paper is not immediately entered electronically, it will have to be sorted and filed properly so that it can be retrieved later. That means that the form effectively has to be filled out twice, which wastes valualbe business time and resources.
Your business could save an average of 10 administrative hours per week just by eliminating this duplicate data entry and implementing a digital solution.
3. Reduce Errors and Inaccuracies
Paper forms do not have defaults, pull down menus, or required fields. That means, they are much more likely than mobile forms or digital forms to be filled out incompletely or contain inaccuracies. In fact, paper forms are 50% more likely to contain errors than mobile forms. Electronic forms allow you to dictate how you would like the forms to be filled out with numberous customizations and requirements.
If there is an error on your paper form, then time has to be spent tracking down the right answer and correcting it. These mistakes can have a major impact on your bottom line.
4. Access Data in Real-Time
For your business to operate at optimal efficiency, you need immediate access to what’s happening in the field. If you’re relying on paper sales reports, for example, you’re not getting the information from your sales people in the field as quickly as you need it.
Since almost all field sales people have smart phones or tablets, going paperless means you can connect to them and get information in real-time with mobile data collection software. Mobile technology allows people to access work files, emails, and information wherever they are. They don’t have to be limited because they aren’t in the office.
A study by the Evolving Workforce Project found that “83% of global workers believe that technology advances have enabled them to be more productive and see this increasing in the future.”
5. Speed Up Your Billing Cycle
Using paper invoices can cause long lead times between invoice issuance and the receipt of remittance. There’s also the possibility that paper invoices will get lost in transit or even mailed to the wrong address. Both are potentially catastrophic.
Because the technology is now affordable for even the smallest enterprise, working paperless is no longer just a nice to have; it’s a must-have. 81% of companies plan on evaluating a paperless solution in the next three years. The digital workplace is here now, and everyone is already going digital.
Competition is fierce, and the more you can streamline your business processes, the more likely you are to reap the benefits of your hard work. Reducing paper consumption also decreases your company's dependence on natural resources.
Start going paperless and automating your business processes with mobile forms.