7 steps to go paperless at your office

11 September 2020

With COVID-19, most businesses have had to change and adapt to a “new normal” way of operating over the past few months. Whilst these changes may have been disruptive, they can also be a catalyst to reinvent your office space and investigate the online programs available to reduce paper usage.

The volume of paper and documentation that clutters many office spaces can have a profound effect on the way we work and how we undertake administration tasks. Having a clear, paperless space can help workers become more efficient and productive.

Moving to a paperless office may seem daunting, and whilst you may not be able to eliminate all forms of paper, by implementing some of the seven steps below, you will be able to start making positive changes to the way you work.

  1. Set up a process to deal with paperwork currently on hand, e.g. scanning and saving into a document system. Digital documents are easier to store and search for than paper ones.
  2. Take advantage of integrated systems – accounting software can save source documents, e.g. invoices scanned to the corresponding payment, so you can discard the paper version. There is also the ability to email invoices directly to some software such as Xero.
  3. Investigate programs that enable signing documents electronically to reduce the amount of printing and paperwork.
  4. Use online banking. There is help available on how to use and integrate online banking with your everyday business needs.
  5. Backup everything regularly as part of your contingency plan for your online records.
  6. Index your online records to make it easier to locate your documents.
  7. Think before printing e.g. using double sided to reduce paper and save on costs.

In line with current trends, the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) requirement of maintaining paper records is also being phased out. The same seven-year rule for tax records applies for paper or electronic forms, making it important that your records are retrievable and readable, so a good backup system is recommended.

Going paperless or digital has many advantages, including allowing you the flexibility to run your business from anywhere and access whatever you need whenever you need it. You just need to take the first step!

Take a look at the Go Paperless toolkit Findex uses to connect digitally with employees and clients or get in touch with the Business Advisory team for more information.

Findex NZ Limited, trading as Findex

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