How Small Business Owners can go Paperless

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The conservation of finite natural resources is crucial for preserving the health of our planet. Small business owners can do their part by taking a few simple yet effective steps that will loan them not only a reduced carbon footprint, but also increased efficiency and management ability. Without further ado, here are some tips on easy ways business owners can reduce their waste and increase their pace.

1) Reduce paper based communications. The first step towards eliminating waste is identifying the main uses of paper in your office. Think of what you use paper for. Perhaps you use paper for applications or to send faxes, maybe it’s mostly used for memos or presentations. One solution for eliminating document clutter and reducing paper reliance is to invest in a document scanner. A document scanner can take your existing paper documents and upload them into an easily manipulable format. It’s a good first step towards going entirely paperless.

2) When you need to print, go double or nothing. Set your office printers to print double sided. If you must consume paper, make sure that you get the most mileage out of it you can. By printing double sided, you ensure that the fewest sheets get consumed per each printing job, stretching your resources further, and loaning you a boost in office material utility.

3) Develop a cloud presence. If you are using paper to share information with employees, consider creating a shared account on a cloud computing service. The cloud allows multiple computers to access a shared drive that is hosted on the internet, meaning all of your employees can access the documents stored in the cloud with no need to print them out and distribute them manually.

4) Use a whiteboard. Are you taking copious notes on paper which you wind up clearing off your desk every week? While a pile of post-its may not seem like much, in reality over time this kind of waste can loan itself to a much bigger usage of paper than one would think. Having a few whiteboards in the office to take and share notes on can be a great way to inspire communal creation of ideas, and all without wasting a single sheet of paper.

Hopefully these simple tips will help your small business increase efficiency and reduce paper usage. Our environment is a finite resource, but your creativity is infinite.

Photo Credit to Ben Britten on Flickr

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