Just think about the times when you spent hours trying to find that one super-important note in the huge pile of documents, notes, files and what not. Had that note been stored somewhere on your computer, it would have taken seconds to locate it, isn’t it.
This article explores various aspects of going paperless; why you need to do it, what tools could help you do that and the process to follow. People working at big corporations might not be able to go paperless completely, because companies have their own rules on use of resources. But, I suggest them to read it nevertheless.
So…Why Go Paperless?
Digital is omnipresent.
Digital technology has come a long way. You can store an entire movie in that small cellphone of yours. And the good thing is there are tools and apps that can sync your information across various devices. Your data is safe.
It reduces clutter.
A clean and clutter-free workspace not only looks good, but, also has a positive impact on the mind of the person who’ll work there. With no clutter around, you tend to be more focused towards your work and get more done.
Better data protection and security.
It’s hard to recover information from a piece of paper once it’s destroyed (unless you know people who work in forensic labs). But data can be recovered if your computer goes haywire. You could also store everything on the cloud and not worry about data loss ever.
It saves money.
You’d realize how much you are saving when you stop buying those files and A4 sheets.
It helps you go green.
Saving the environment isn’t bad either. When there’s so much talk about going green, why not try to contribute as much as you can towards preserving natural resources.
Okay, so now that you are convinced going paperless is the way ahead, lets talk about the main tools you’d need to begin with the process.
Tools That Will Help
Your computer is where it begins. You gotta transfer the data and organize it there. You should also decide what are the applications you’d need that’d replace your need for using paper.
Your mobile phone.
You’d use your cellphone to store important notes, contacts and other small bits of information, which you usually write in stickies.
Your iPad or iPod Touch.
Didn’t we tell you that you could also use your iPad to lower your carbon footprint? Make use of it in the process of going paperless.
An external drive for data backup.
Although there are online storage options available, it is important that you back it up on an external hard disk too.
A scanner would help you quickly transfer data from paper to PC, especially if you’ve got a huge number of files and documents.
A paper shredder.
Finally, you would need a shredder to dispose of the paper. Well, you could also do that manually, but in case you have access to a shredder, using that would be a better option.
How to Go Paperless
Set aside time.
Going paperless is easier said than done. You should set aside time, in fact, a day if possible to get this work done.
Choose and organize.
Now begins the cumbersome (and boring) part. You need to carefully divide the documents into useful and not necessary. You’d be surprised to find how much trash you’ve got once you start organizing the stuff. You would also need to create different folders on your computer, and other devices so that the clutter isn’t transferred from your desk to your hard drive.
Start the upload and backup.
Done organizing? Great, now start the process of transferring data and making it go digital. Also, back it up on the external drive as you save it on your computer. No point delaying the backup.
Do a final check.
Go through the papers as well as the data on the computer/cellphone/iPad to see if they match and you haven’t missed anything. Also, check the non-essential list of items again to confirm that all of it is useless.
Shred what’s not needed.
Pat yourself on the back, you have successfully accomplished the herculean task of going paperless and de-cluttering your workspace. Now, just get rid of all the useless documents to give a sparkling clean look to your workspace! Make it look beautiful!
Feel free to share your tips, suggestions and how going paperless has helped you below.
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