Crudely, the use of less paper within our corporate or institutional operations can help to protect forests, especially old-growth forests. This article is written by Reynold Leming of Mint Business Solutions to provide some hints and tips on how digital information management technology can help use less paper.
This is intended as a discussion piece to trigger debate and contributions. Other ideas or experiences are most welcome; we will be delighted to attribute any published within the list below.
- All too often the paper file is seen as the single, integrated place to find a trustworthy audit trail, given the many internal and external sources from which information is generated. A document and records management system could be used to integrate email, fax, (scanned) paper correspondence, word processesed output, computer reports etc.
- You could assess the cost:benefits of introducing electronic faxing.
- Incoming paper-based information which needs to be circulated can be scanned (rather than photocopied) and distibuted electronically, either by email or publication on an intranet.
- Equally, the corporate information you publish to staff can be posted as a document file or web content within an intranet in order to avoid printing.
- Equally, the information you publish to customers can be provided to them electronically or published via your web site (or extranet) in order to avoid printing.
- The second 'copy' report you print for your own retention from a business system can be automatically captured electronically via COLD or Enterprise Report Management systems.
- Investigate electronic messaging and internet methods for issuing invoices, purchase orders, statements etc. Please see this BSI link for informaiton on 'Electronic Documents and e-Commerce Transactions as Legally Admissible Evidence': the BSI code of practice, PD 5000:1999.
Locally to our Bristol and Bath region, a recycling scheme for used printer, fax and copier cartridges is being run by Lasertech North Bristol. Participants are credited with up to £10 for each cartridge donated and they can opt to donate a percentage of this credit to the Greater Bristol Foundation, Lasertech's charity partner. Companies interested in taking part should call the number below.
(Neil Paget on 0870 112 3594)
Please also see our complementary information resource, The Document Site
all too often the paper file is seen as the single, integrated place