Paperless Office

Definition - What does Paperless Office mean?

A paperless office is a concept in which usage of paper is greatly reduced or eliminated totally in a office environment.

This is achieved by converting document into digital form. According to the proponents, a paperless office is not only environmentally friendly, but also helps in boosting the productivity and efficiency of an office while also saving money and making work processes easier and more convenient as digital documents can be easily shared between users.

Techopedia explains Paperless Office

Advantages of Paperless office:
  • Documents can be found and retrieved with ease using paperless office. This can save a signficant amount of time during the work day.
  • The same document can be duplicated, faxed, manipulated or combined at the same time.
  • The paperless office helps multiple users to access the same document at the same time with more ease and convenience.
  • With respect to storage and space involved, the paperless office provides bigger and more efficient storage. Large amounts of documents can be stored in a single computer. Bulky file cabinets can be eliminated.
  • A document can be retrieved without having to move physically from one location in the office to another.
  • There are greater communication capabilities involved, particularly with employees working in different locations.

Disadvantages of paperless office:
  • Reading of a long document is tough on a computer screen. It is easier to read a long document on a paper, and many people prefer reading on paper in general.
  • Security measures needs to be strengthened in a paperless office. User access control must be monitored.
  • Legal implications of digital work processing are involved.
  • The process of converting existing documents into digital form takes time and sometimes comes at great costs.
  • Continual upgrading of hardware and software can be essential.
  • Computer viruses, power outages, network crashes and the like can effectively shut down an entire company if it relies solely on digital information.
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