Have you ever thought your company should go paperless? We’ve seen the potential of a paperless office grow over recent years, but you’d be hard pressed to find an office that is truly paper-free. Is a paperless office even possible? The simple answer? No. We're moving that direction, but it is going to take us a long time.
The advantages of paper
There's a reason why paper hasn't yet vanished from most offices: It's useful. Employees at even the greenest of offices—those workspaces most dedicated to reducing the level of paper they consume—have uses for paper. Paper is portable. Employees can easily scrawl notes on it. They can fold it up and slip it into their wallets or shirt pockets. Many employees prefer proofreading crucial documents in hard-copy form. There's something about proofreading a document on the computer screen that causes some employees to miss important errors or typos.
Less paper than ever
Paper isn't disappearing, it is becoming steadily less important. While we still need paper for certain tasks, most offices are using less paper than ever before. Most writing is performed on a word-processor and communication is done via email or Skype as opposed to fax or letters. Meeting notes, company schedules, and whole marketing campaigns are stored digitally on our computers and smartphones. So while paper is not yet obsolete, the sticky note is no longer king of the workplace.
It’s obvious that offices of the future will rely on less paper than even we do now, but will paper ever really go the way of the milkman? Maybe. Some people still prefer having their milk delivered from a local dairy but most are content to pick it up from the store when they need it.
Paper will most likely go the same route and it will be a personal preference as to how much paper is consumed in the office. As many of our business processes rely on digital solutions, there will always be a select few who prefer good old-fashioned pen and paper.