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Five secrets to pushing your paperless efforts into overdrive

Transitioning from on-premise based office into a paperless environment is always a smart move for any business. However, many businesses normally take the journey and are satisfied immediately they are able to eliminate papers, not knowing that there is more they could achieve if they pushed further. This is like harvesting the fruits that are hanging on the lower part of the tree forgetting that there is much to gain if they pushed a little bit further. It is important to create a true process enhancement that will allow for meaningful usage of the information stored in the cloud.

True improvement of the process is realized by the implementation of business process management and workflow. This article will discuss not only how to create a paperless office, but also a more efficient paperless office thus bringing a clear difference as far as productivity is concerned.

Secrets To Taking Your Office’s Journey To Paperless Into Overdrive

Choose The Right System

The difference between success and failure when transitioning towards a paperless office is first of all in the choice of the management system and document management software system. Always start by evaluating your automation needs and take see how best you can streamline the change process.

Keep in mind that eliminating on-premise papers is just but the beginning. You need a system that will help you organize, streamline and restructure for a more transparent, efficient and accurate business environment. Your system of choice must comply with set standards and regulations, while offering superior, easy-to-use features that will help you manage your business more efficiently.

Employ Workflow And BPM To Automate Processes

Workflow or BPM is an Enterprise Content Management (ECM) tool that enables you to manage the information that propels your business or organization. Rather than sit passively in an electronic storage system or a server, the tool makes it possible for you to distribute the necessary information to the appropriate people and at the right time for the purposes of processing.

This technology enhances both turnaround and efficiency, thus allowing you to connect software systems in a way that creates a seamless operation. With BPM/workflow, you can view, automate, model and standardise the different job aspects that constitute your business processes. After implementing the electronic storage and document retrieval, go for an automation process that excites.

Combine With Core Systems And Legacy For Enhanced Information Access

Integrating your Enterprise Content Management system with core and business approach – Including other office applications such as SharePoint, Outlook and MS Word- can considerably boost the functionality of applications that run your business. Being able to connect different systems that are standalone can deliver and improve accessibility of data and documents required by your staff for processing, updating and validation.

You can use portal or webpage integration to give your partners, employees and clients self-service options and automate activities through the integration of information from other data sources or applications. To simplify integration, go for a system that offers APIs/Published Web Services, Zero-programming integration tools, and a professional team capable to provide you with need-specific configuration and installations.

Integrate Electronic Forms With Workflow

You can minimise outgoing paper and income by using eForms. Since all data captured in the electronic form is categorised and indexed already, the forms can be used to initiate business processes. The forms can also enable efficiency or collect and display relevant information within a single location for easy evaluation and approval in situations where such data is situated in different screens. This enhances efficiency, accuracy, customer service and turnaround.

Consider Engaging Industry Expertise

Point-and-click, drag-and-drop configuration tools are always the easiest part when learning how to make use of ECM technology. The planning part is always the hardest and using an ECM consultant can help your business transition to paperless processing more efficiently.

Such experts can help assess and analyse your existing business situation, guide you through the turbulent change process and offer the best recommendations to move forward. Using workflow and integration, you can quickly achieve your goals through improved access of information and with the help of industry experts.

Transitioning to a paperless office is like climbing a ladder where eliminating paper is the starting point. You need to build upon this single experience in order to take your paperless office into overdrive.

Marie K. Powell, blogger, author, and online entrepreneur