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After the opening and seconding speeches, out latest Great Debate on the paperless office is now open to
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I would agree with pretty much all the above but one instance where I find paper still useful, even essential, is proof reading complex documents.
However hard I try, I miss things when I proof read on screen. So important documents I will print out on scrap paper to proof read and then shred. It is also easier if there is a lot of cross checking to be done (does that paragraph make sense in the light of this paragraph?) as well.
My firm installed Invu earlier in the year. There have been several teething problems with the program and not all end user problems. When the programme works it works really well. The benefits that the paperless salesmen make appear to be true and when it runs well I would recommend it to anyone.
However, there are downsides which are glossed over. If anyone is considering installing a paperless office my comments would be as follows:
1. Pick your quiet time before installing it. We chose February - March, after the tax return rush. If you are busy with tax returns no one should attempt to install it before 31 January.2. Be prepared for a lot of non chargeable time, if your organisation is ruled by the clock, for the person or people who are responsible for queries and installation within your organisation.3. Ensure that all computers are up to standard, you will need at least two screens on every computer in the office, at least 1 gig of RAM per machine and a server with at least 4 gig of RAM. Without the RAM Invu can have a tendency to run slowly.4. Be thick skinned., at times staff will call you and your paperless system every name under the sun due to an issue that was unforeseen. That will also include the ones who think it is a fantastic idea.5. Be prepared for a lot of updates. We have had about 6 updates to the programme so far, however, saying that we have not had one for about 6 weeks now.6. Really think about the structure that you want within the programme and do not necessarily use the one that you first thought of or the system that you currently have.7. Prior to installing the programme have a thorough review and tidy up of your existing system. You will be amazed at how much information you have on your server that you do not need.
As mentioned earlier, paperless is good and provided the upfront cost is not to terrifying in the current economic climate I would recommend people to use a paperless system.
The myth is only in the minds of those who don't want to go paperless. At Lindenhouse we have progressed over 1400 businesses to the less paper environment. These businesses themselves have realised and will confirm that the massive benefits they have accumulated completely outweigh any negatives spoken of in this article. Yes software can lead you towards the goal but it cannot get you all the way. For that you need a business partner with experienced staff who will organise your procedures and training as well as the software and hardware. If you would like to speak to our customers to find out why they would never go back to a paper based system please do not hesitate to contact us.
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