Paperless processes take hold in accountancy
Far from being technology hold-outs, UK accountants have taken to the paperless office according to feedback from AccountingWEB.co.uk members.
In a recent article on the site, practitioner Kevin Salter urged fellow accountants to “hurry up and get on with it!” Consultants Charles Verrier, Simon Hurst and Jon Milburn from ScanWorx have all made similar points in articles. Judging from the responses to the site’s paperless debates and our latest poll, AccountingWEB members have heeded the calls to ditch their filing cabinets and go electronic.
In a poll to gauge the profession’s adoption of paperless office tools, nearly one in seven respondents (70%) had first-hand electronic document management experience and 26% classed themselves as “Totally committed”.
More negative attitudes – reflecting the statements, “staff didn’t buy into it” and “you’ll never eradicate paper from accountancy” – prevailed among 40% of the poll respondents. Below are the latest results. Because members of our discussion group were aware of it first, the early results were even more favourably disposed towards paperless technologies.
To ensure that it accurately reflects the attitudes of the entire AccountingWEB.co.uk membership, please feel free to cast your vote for the poll option that most closely reflects your attitude to the paperless office.
The responses so far suggest that after going through the inflated expectations and subsequent disappointments aroused by early hype around the paperless office, the UK accountancy profession has entered what industry analyst Gartner calls the “slope of enlightenment”, a period of less widely trumpeted, but more commercially successful technology adoption.
In the next couple of months, AccountingWEB and its fellow Sift Media communities will continue to conduct interactive market research into the document management software and scanners that members use. Keep an eye out for these initiatives and the resulting Business Buyer’s Guide to the Paperless Office that will emerge later in the spring. If the topic is of immediate interest to you, be sure to join and participate in Charles Verrier’s Document management discussion group.