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Who does not love paper? It’s value is clear – it’s versatile, mobile, lightweight, and can even be made into little planes and cranes.  However, since the advent and evolution of computing technology,  the dominance of paper has begun to wane, and one could argue that we’re well on our way towards an eventuality that sees the decline of paper-based information. We recognize that many within the facilities management cohort still depend on paper-based systems (work orders, RFP’s, and filing cabinets, for example) to keep records of the work they do, but the time is quickly approaching where digital records will become the standard way of doing business. We’d like to highlight how paper holds us back from optimal operational efficiency, and why digital information storage is the better option.

First of all, the way we use paper is wasteful. Despite being recyclable, paper is not really reusable. Each page printed with any error is no longer useful, and it often ends up in the trash anyway. If it is reused, it becomes scrap paper that gets one note scribbled on it before it too gets thrown into the garbage. And we haven’t even mentioned the amount of energy and deforestation that happens to make the paper in the first place. On digital systems, we don’t discard entire documents because of an error – we use the backspace key, and those documents remain editable for their entire life. Stop wasting money on paper and more importantly,the ink which gives paper its power.

Paper relies on copies. Paper is physical, meaning if only one version of a given document exists, a literal copy must be made for that information to be shared. Not only is this wasteful, but it handcuffs you to constantly needing multiple copies of a given document in order for everybody to get on the same page. With digital systems, documents can be copied instantly and without the need for additional resources. Information sharing is central to getting business done, and having that information digitally accessible will maximize the efficiency of your organization.

Finally, digital systems make accessing information significantly easier. Gone are the days of exclusively alphabetized and chronological ordering and filing systems. With digital systems, you can simply search for any terms related to what you’re looking for, or filter based on criteria, and get at all of your information instantly. Moreover, if you need to reference historical data when in the field, you can access it from cloud storage, whereas paper-based systems would leave you helpless. This is mobile business intelligence, delivered.

Paper has long been the driving medium for information recording and delivery, but with the advent of smaller, faster, more connected devices, paper is becoming more of a burden than an asset. As you think about how you handle your information, consider envVisual – it could save you time, money and energy by reducing or eliminating your reliance on paper.