“Despite the shiny minimalist images of office life that grace the world of architecture and advertising, the reality for many is that paper still has a strangle-hold on their personal office space, and on most of the processes they are tasked with.” Derived from a recent survey conducted by AIIM, a 25 year advocate for the reduction of paper in the work environment, the following numbers depict the work yet to be done.
- Nearly a third of those surveyed described their offices as piled high with paper and bogged down with paper processes.
- 40% still feel the need to reference and file their important documents on paper.
- 56% of organizations still require their business records to be signed and filed on paper.
Regardless of the fact that there is a widespread belief that reducing and removing paper is a best practice; piles of paper still contrast with clear desks, physical forms contrast with automated workflows and warehouses full of boxes contrast with electronic archives. The below shows an overview of that contrast found in the recent AIIM study:
- 17%: stated they had achieved their paperless office.
- 20%: reported that paper use was increasing.
- 35%: print electronic records and processes on paper.
- 72%: feel that “business at the speed of paper” will not be acceptable in 5 years.
- 43%: have seen an increase in customer service, productivity and compliance, as the major benefits of less-paper projects.
- 84%: state achieving a payback in less than 18 months from their less-paper projects.
The efficiency, effectiveness and resilience of any office could be greatly improved by streamlining paper-centric processes that still cause paper to pile up on desks. The early movers into the less-paper environment have captured a strong competitive advantage.