A Comprehensive Guide to Going Paperless (2023)

Submitted by Karla Metzler on Fri, 03/17/2023 - 12:43
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Did you know that people lose 7.5% of all paper documents?

Although 7.5% may not sound like a lot, it accounts for a huge number of lost documents.

According to the International Data Corporation, 4.4 million pages will be printed every minute in 2025. 

So, if we do the math, that means more than 300,000 documents will be lost every minute of every day in 2025.

This is a big problem, especially for small businesses because it costs at least $125 to pay for the labor to recover one misfiled paper document. Paper waste needs to be managed because losing paper means your business is losing money.

So, how do we solve this problem?

One way to solve the problem is going paperless. 

Going paperless can offset the business expenses of losing paper documents. It also has the added benefit of being good for the environment, and environmentally conscious workplaces tend to make green by being green

This means that having the reputation of being an eco friendly paperless office can help increase your sales and make your company more appealing to customers.  

But going paperless can be daunting. Luckily, as a top-rated print vendor in the North Texas and DFW area, STPT has helped many small businesses support their missions to go green by practicing environmentally friendly printing and scanning. 

We want to use our expertise to help you figure out how to go paperless by putting together this easy-to-read guide that covers: 
•    how to check your office’s paperless capability with MPS 
•    set-up for the paperless office 
•    document organization and management software options 
•    using cloud programs to back up digital documents 
•    scanners and multifunction printer options  
•    Going paperless: our role at STPT 

After reading this comprehensive article, you will know how to go paperless, which tools your company will need to go paperless, and how STPT can help your office accomplish your paperless goals. 

Going Paperless at Work: Where Do We Start? 

First: is your office as paperless as it could be? 

The best way to determine your company’s paperless capabilities is through Managed Print Services (MPS). MPS allows you to easily identify obsolete and ineffective printers, and it also helps figure out which prints are unnecessary. 

MPS makes going paperless easy because it pinpoints areas where you need to cut down on printing and its associated costs.  
It is important to assess your office’s current printing practices before going paperless. You need to determine how much paper you use and how much of that paper is needed for the operation of your business. 

Using Managed Print Services to Check Your Paperless Capabilities 

Managed Print Services (MPS) makes your office more functional by helping you easily track and control how much you use your printers and scanners. 

MPS can vary based upon which print vendor you choose to use. For example, at STPT we use eValet, which offers several benefits for companies, including an easy-to-access app where you can view all your devices at once. 

MPS also offers helpful tools for checking and increasing your company’s environmental sustainability. Your MPS provider can tell you if your printers are effective or ineffective, and they can also point out which printers use the most energy. 

MPS Saves Money and Energy 

MPS also uses strategies to save energy, like auto-shut off features that tell the machine to turn off automatically when not in use. This saves energy by reducing how much power printers and scanners use during the day. 

Still weighing the pros and cons of Managed Print Services with STPT? Check out our blog Is Managed Print Services Right for Your Business? (Pros and Cons) for more information. 

Document Organization Software is a Must  

The next step to going paperless involves organization. 

Going digital doesn’t mean your files disappear. You still need to organize your documents.  

Document organization software works like the old filing cabinet you use to store paper documents—only it is much more efficient, easier to navigate, and it doesn’t take up prime office space. 

While it is easy to learn how to use document organization software, it can be difficult choosing which software works best for your office, so to make the process simpler, here are our top recommendations for document organization software for going paperless: 

Going digital requires your documents to be organized in two ways: information needs to be put into a storage repository, and it also needs special software that manages document creation and print usage. 

1.    Xerox DocuShare 

DocuShare is a cloud-enabled service that can help you manage digital documents. It is called an enterprise content management (ECM) platform because it gives you easy-to-use tools for digitizing your office documents.  

DocuShare provides many benefits for its users, including a mobile-friendly system that lets you tailor the features to match your company’s brand. It also allows access from many kinds of devices, like computers, phones, and copiers. 

2.    Microsoft SharePoint 

Microsoft SharePoint, like Xerox DocuShare, serves as a repository for team documents. Like an infinite digital filing cabinet, SharePoint works by creating a secure and organized space for document storage that can be accessed by members of your company’s team from any device with a web browser. 

SharePoint consists of several different types of applications, all designed with the same purpose in mind: organizing digital documents. 

SharePoint in Microsoft 365 is a cloud-based repository, but there are other options, like SharePoint Server, which launches its own server on-site for your business or uses Microsoft 365 Enterprise to perform the same function.  

There’s also OneDrive sync and the Designer 2013 versions, which offer the same capabilities in smaller, inexpensive packages.  

You Will Also Need Document Management Software

To further organize your business, you will also need document management software that controls print usage and functions, like Y-Soft or PaperCut (explained below):  

1. Y-Soft Enterprise Suite   

Y-Soft offers a variety of benefits to companies, including print authentication and reporting.  

The Y-Soft SafeQ Enterprise Suite allows companies to manage all machines in their entire fleet from one dashboard. Using this dashboard, you can control costs by tracking and analyzing your budget and data needs.  

Another great feature of Y-Soft is that it lets you analyze activity by department or individual, and the information is all included in one place. You can set individual or department print limits that control print overages and paper wasting. 

Y-Soft allows you to create rules that manage print activity, which decreases paper waste and reduces office printing expenses.  
Their American headquarters are conveniently located in the DFW metroplex so service support is also immediately available to local customers. 



2. PaperCut 

PaperCut is one of the more well-known document management systems in the industry.  

It allows you to print from any device whenever you want. And it secures all your devices so that you can cut costs and decrease your company’s negative impact on the environment.  

If you’re looking for a management system that is well-ranked, then PaperCut may be the one for you: it ranked first in print management in 2022.  

Check out our blog Print Management Software Y-Soft vs. PaperCut for a more thorough breakdown of the similarities and differences between the two software options. 

Backing Up Digital Data 

Backing up your data is important no matter what! But it is especially important for companies that rely mostly on digital documents.  

Losing a document that contains vital information can negatively impact your business and cost you money, so it is best to use multiple backups. 

When storing digital data, it is best to have at least one cloud-based backup and another physical copy backed up to a flash drive or hard drive in case a leak or cyber breach affects the cloud. 

So, what is the best cloud program service for small business going paperless? 

Some popular options for cloud storage include Apple iCloud, Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, and Dropbox. According to PC Magazine, there are also less well-known options, like Sync and IDrive, that perform well for some users. 

The Xerox ConnectApp for Cloud Storage is a good option for cloud-based document storage because it connects easily to your copier/printer and supports other cloud-based services, like Google Drive, Dropbox, and OneDrive. 

Using Scanners and Multifunction Printers to Reduce Paper Waste 

Once you’re ready to get serious about going paperless, the next step is finding a quality scanning device that suits your company’s needs.  

When a company we contract with tells us “we are digitizing our office and going paperless,” the first thing we suggest is investing in a quality scanner or a multifunctional device with scanning capabilities. 

However, Xerox offers a variety of multifunction printers and scanners for office use, so we have narrowed down a few good options for you to consider: 

For a small office or business, you will want to try a scanner from the workgroup and departmental category of Xerox products.  

One possible option is the Xerox N60w model, which offers USB, Ethernet and WIFI connectivity and is touchscreen operated.  

Another option is the production category of Xerox scanners, which is best for companies that scan significant amounts of paper every day or work with large documents regularly.  

In this category, a good option is the Xerox W130, which is the fastest scanner in Xerox’s entire collection. This kind of scanner is for a business that needs speed and efficiency.