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The ‘green’ aspects of going paperless: how it can benefit your business and the world around us

What if we told you that using less paper could make your business more profitable and make it more attractive to environmentally conscious customers? By taking a green approach to your company’s internal processes—specifically through the reduction of paper consumption—not only will you be putting more green in your pocket, but you’ll be helping the environment as well.

go paperless

photo credit: Daniel Y. Go via photopin cc

In 2010, the US Environmental Protection Agency reported that the average US office worker uses 10,000 sheets of copy paper each year. Multiply that by the total number of employees, and you’ve got yourself one lengthy paper trail. After printing, copying, mailing, storing, filing or recycling, it can cost up to 31 times the more to manage information on paper. Through these labor intensive processes, you’re not only wasting monetary resources, but environmental ones too. Over 40% of the world’s wood pulp goes toward the production of paper and it takes more than 1.5 cups of water to make just one sheet of paper.

With the accessibility of today’s ever-evolving technologies, there’s no need to waste such valuable resources. And, while it may not be entirely feasible for a company to go completely paperless, a mere revamp of existing processes can reap significant benefits on both an internal and external level.

Internally, utilizing a document management system will improve workflow, increase revenue and heighten employee satisfaction. Your employees will not have to waste energy on mundane tasks such as file storing or be held liable for errors in processing. Rather, their increased productivity leaves room for more complex tasks, allowing them to achieve a greater sense of value to the company. Furthermore, by eliminating the use of paper, you’re directly cutting operational costs. So, say goodbye to unnecessary storage expenses, printing overhead and labor costs. Going green will positively exemplify your company’s enthusiasm to stay relevant while fostering the success of its employees.

Externally, your company will resonate with consumers and potential business partners. By recognizing the changing attitudes on environmentally sound business practices, your company will become more appealing to a wider range of clientele. Establishing your young business amongst green standards, like reduction of waste, or lessening your carbon footprint, can improve corporate brand and strengthen your reputation.

Finally, by eliminating the possibility of data theft or unnecessary document destruction, consumers will feel more at ease in trusting your business with their personal information. And, with better trust between business and consumer comes greater retention and customer satisfaction – a further benefit of going green!

So, when it comes to hopping on the sustainable bandwagon, your business need not think twice. Not only will your employees and customers appreciate your business’s concern with its environmental impact, your reduction in paper consumption will permit a higher possibility of profits for your company. After all, which would you rather have, an abundance of money or scrap paper?

The ‘green’ aspects of going paperless: how it can benefit your business and the world around us

About the Author: Jeff Frankel is Vice President of Business Development and Marketing at docSTAR, a B2B software firm specializing in cloud document management and business process automation. He has more than two decades experience in corporate business development, working with industry-leading firms including Authentidate Holding Corp, Med-Flash, Health Focus of NY, and Ernst & Young. Jeff offers innovative perspectives on streamlining business for improved efficiency and productivity. You can follow Jeff and the docSTAR team on Twitter, @docstarsoftware.

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SMB Authors 1038 posts

This article is one of the excellent contributions from small business owners, decision makers and professionals.

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  • Thanks for sharing the information Jeff. :)

  • Jeff

    The environmental impact of processing 1000 A/P invoices/month is nearly 3 trees, > 1000 gallons of water, 1/3 of a barrel of oil and > 700 KW’s of electricity. The average internal cost is ~$12/invoice. With content management, you’ll decrease the cost by a minumum of 50% and save valuable resources.

  • Well-written. Now is the time to go ‘GREEN’. Less paper, less expenses and more money. Nothing could be better than doing business and helping our environment. :)