When the topics of electronic document storage, forms automation and other similar processes are brought up, there are some common, paper-heavy industries and company departments that come to mind.
The amount of paper generated using traditional accounting practices, especially during tax season, is one standard area of consideration. Another are the billing-heavy accounts payable and accounts receivable departments at organizations big enough to use dedicated personnel for these practices. Law offices, often filled with voluminous legal libraries, research papers and contracts, are also a common component of the conversation.
There are plenty of less-usual applications of paperless processes, however, and they provide the same wide variety of benefits – reduced ecological impact, lowered supply costs, quicker access to information, among others – no matter what type of business is converting to electronic storage and access practices.
At a news desk, paperless means faster
The mixed use of analog teleprompter technology and paper documents has long been a regular practice for broadcast news stations on the local and national levels. While this system worked, allowing the mixing of standard items with breaking news handed to anchors as soon as a report was ready and the provisions of updates and corrections to displayed scripts, it is neither as efficient nor inexpensive as possible.
Denver-based Fox affiliate KDVR recently converted its broadcast studio to a paperless operation, using tablets to access updates and changes instead of printed copies. This setup provides the universal benefits of reducing environmental impact and saving money on the purchase of paper, printing supplies and other associated items.
For the broadcasters, it also offers the unique advantage of providing even quicker access and dispersal of information. News agencies are often in competition to provide the latest stories before their competitors, so cutting down on the time it takes to provide reports is an advantage.
Basic advice for all businesses
Switching to paperless operations can provide unique benefits to businesses like broadcast news organizations, but there are also universal advantages. CNet points out that some of the easiest aspects, like switching to paperless billing and using electronic manuals, are incredibly simple and require almost no extra effort.
When it comes to internal and external document management, businesses should consider working with a proven service provider. The relatively small costs of going paperless are more than recouped over time, leading to a significant return on investment.