The paperless office has long been a dangling carrot for futurists and those in pursuit of the ultimate in orderly work spaces. After years of predicting when it would get here, we’re finally on the verge. Here are three big reasons why.
1) Cheap Storage Space - Only four years ago a terabyte hard drive was the size of a cantaloupe (albeit cubical in shape) and would run you upwards of $400. Today? That same amount of storage is the size of a wallet and can be as low as $79. This shrinkage in size and price will continue for some time, thanks to Moore’s Law.
2) Cloud Computing - With documents able to be stored online and accessed from anywhere, it’s far more convenient for businesses to digitize their office documents. Why have that file you need sitting on someone’s desk, when you can literally get to it on you iPad, laptop, or phone from anywhere you can snag an internet connection?
3) Mobile Technology - Between smartphones and iPads and all the communication tools that they bring with them, we now have the ability to send and share information like never before, which means everything about your business is more efficient - and easy - in the absence of physical documents.
One thing still holding us back from the paperless office is that the past ten years have brought monumental changes in technology, and the advances have been too fast to keep up with, in many cases.
Those who are used to file folders and fax machines sometimes prefer to stay with them.
That said, as the tools become more common - and easier to use (see: the iPad) - everyone will eventually come around. Being up on the latest and most efficient ways of dealing with your company’s documents will be essential to doing business, and for that reason, adaptation will be forced.
So as to the paperless office...we’re getting there.