As computers began to take over more and more tasks in companies in the 1960s and 1970s, it was expected that it would not take long before the paperless office would be created. The expectation was that the increasing automation would lead to a reduction in the amount of paper used in the office. This would then result in the disappearance of paper from the office environment.
However, the amount of paper in the business environment only increased, as automation allowed people to create and print documents themselves more often. Although the total amount of paper used in the office has been decreasing since this century, it is estimated that every employee in the office still consumes a kilo of paper every day.
The vision of Archive-IT
In our rapidly changing world, organisations need to be agile and flexible. In the view of technology company Archive-IT, the use of a digital archive as an information carrier is more efficient. It must be possible to access and edit information securely, interactively, anywhere and anytime.
That is why it is so important to digitise documents and to be able to work with them digitally as well. The difference between these two is explained in more detail below.
The need for digitisation
The ever-increasing amount of paper in the office environment is causing considerable problems. Think of this, for example:
- Employees who spend a lot of time finding physical documents;
- Information that belongs together is spread over different files;
- Important documents that are difficult or impossible to find;
- The high and increasing costs of document storage;
- The risk of paper documents being damaged or destroyed in the office, for example in the event of fire or by pests such as paper fishes;
- Information that has not been updated and therefore results in outdated and incomplete files;
- The limited possibilities to secure paper documents.
The benefits of digitisation
The solution to these problems is to digitise paper documents. Digitisation makes it much easier for companies to find their information. Files and subjects can be included in the business system and interconnected. This also ensures that, for example, no important information is missing from customer and patient files.
At a time when privacy and the protection of sensitive data are becoming more and more important, digitisation can provide extra security. For example, by storing information in a secure environment and providing sensitive files with authorisations. This also makes manipulation of documents considerably more difficult.
By digitising documents, the company can easily comply with the retention obligations demanded by the government and the tax authorities.
The importance of digital working
Once documents have been digitized, it is necessary that they can be accessed, viewed and adapted in a simple way. This is why a solution is needed that makes it easy to work with digitised documents digitally.
It is important that digitised documents can be retrieved at any time and on different devices. This means that a good IT solution is needed, which organises and manages all the digital information in the organisation centrally. In order to prevent incomplete files, this solution will have to make it possible to supplement existing documents or files. And if a physical document, such as an invoice or a receipt, does emerge, it must be easy to add it to the existing file. This is the only way to create a truly “paperless” office, with all the advantages that this brings.