The promise of a “paperless” office has teased those of us responsible for managing the seemingly endless stacks of information delivered to us daily. Technology increasingly offers many excellent solutions. Those who have adopted these techniques have not only been able to tame the “paper tiger”, they have reduced storage costs, streamlined workflows, and eased accessibility to what previously had been centered around metal filing cabinets and missing folders and files. In this article, I discuss some of the concepts that may help you to deal with less paper.
One way to help with paper overwhelm is to REDUCE the amount of paper entering your work space. First, we must think about the different ways that paper actually arrives at our desk. If we can attack and deal with the source of paper BEFORE it comes into our work space, we will eliminate the need to do more with it. This means checking with Vendors and requesting “Paperless Billing” and communications when possible. A free service that helps manage, consolidate and communicate all of your incoming Paperless Billing activities is Manilla™. (Visit https://www.manilla.com/ for details.) While we have become accustomed to “touching” paper and being “reminded” of bills by “seeing” the actual paper statements arriving in our Snail Mail boxes, it is surprising how easy it is to digitize this process with Paperless Billing Statements and a service such as Manilla along with e-mail there to do the reminding for us.
Once we eliminate all the paper sources from entering our space that we can, we next deal with the paper we MUST handle on a daily basis. This is where a quality scanner and/or the camera on our smart phone help us work wonders. I routinely recommend a good quality scanner that can efficiently process receipts, business cards, and documents of all types. Combined with an intelligent software program that can store, organize, help us retrieve, report and share the information as we need it. I use several and recommend different products and services to accomplish this, depending on the volume and the demands of a specific business type. Entrepreneurs working in a small business may find solutions from NEAT™ appropriate.
Visit my Digital Imaging http://www.askavie.com/boutique/digital-imaging/ and Software http://www.askavie.com/boutique/software/ pages in my Boutique at www.askavie.com for details. You will learn about Neat Desk and Neat Cloud as well as Nuance Paperport™. Many APPS are available that help turn your Smart Phone Camera into a scanner. If you are a Neat user, their free App integrates with Neat Cloud providing a mobile solution. Also consider Scanner Pro by Readdle, CamScanner Free, and Genius Scan-PDF Scanner. iPhone and Android versions are available. I am also a fan for those seeking a high-quality desktop scanner, those offered in the ScanSnap™ brand by Fujitsu. Search keyword “ScanSnap” via the Amazon banner in my hardware boutique page: http://www.askavie.com/boutique/hardware/ for a number of models both mobile and stationary.
Beginning to store and organize digitized PDF versions of documents can be a daunting task, though easiest when we mimic the analog versions of the same. Just as we utilize old fashioned filing cabinets to store hanging file folders labeled alphabetically or numerically depending upon application, we can create digital folders on our magnetic storage locally or in the Cloud for easy retrieval. Naming files, tagging their content and using search features to retrieve them later makes the digital versions even easier to access and use. In traditional offices, when paper files were removed from their storage, it was often a challenge tracking them down. Today, sharing digital files with others is simple and no longer requires the need for multiple copies to be had.
As a bonus to those reading this article today, I am offering a FREE DIGITAL FILING CABINET that has gotten rave reviews from my clients that put it to work, and it is compatible with both Windows, Mac and Cloud Storage systems. If you’d like to have it, request a copy via the Contact form at: http://www.askavie.com/contact/ and mention FREE DIGITAL FILING CABINET in the Comment section. I’ll be certain to e-mail it right out to you.
This is 8th in a series of aSKaVIE articles devoted to your productivity, digital privacy and protection. In future articles, you can look forward to tips and tricks that you can use to make sense out of your digital investments as well as reviews of new and exciting things that will likely provide value to your home and business. I invite you to write me with your questions and feedback. We’ll also be helping and inspiring others by answering your questions and that’s what makes my job so much fun! So stay tuned. Please send your questions to TheRosyReport@askavie.com.
About Avie Uniglicht: For over 30-years, Avie Uniglicht – “Your Tech Concierge™” has provided technology support and solutions to entrepreneurs who don’t have time to worry about the details. Specializing in “White-Glove Remote Room-Service,” Avie’s concept of giving you, his client, virtual “house calls” is cited regularly as invaluable and many of Avie’s clients say they couldn’t live without him on speed dial. Avie graduated Summa Cum Laude from Temple University with a BS in Business Administration. A former auditor for Price Waterhouse and past President of Ace Computer Center Inc., he is also the author of the e-Book, “Your Personal Computer Driver’s License.” Avie’s extensive business background and strong experience in accounting enhances his natural talent for helping his clients see the bigger picture regarding their business. “Your Tech Concierge” helps clients evaluate strategy so that together, they create an action plan with the end in mind. For more information or to “Ask Avie,” please call him at (888)-374-3712, and visit www.askavie.com.