How To Set Up A Paperless Office System in 2021

Monday, 7 Jun 2021

The environmental impact of wasting paper in offices is a massive back step from the narrative of sustainability. Climate change is a sad reality, and there is a dire need to reverse its influence.

The least bit of contribution that businesses in Melbourne can make towards the movement is to set up a paperless system in their offices. It is the smartest way to get things organised, reduce spending on stationery, and decrease the footprint of the organisation.

Other benefits include higher efficiency, less wastage of time in sorting through files and availability of more space in the office due to the absence of cabinets. Most bookkeepers in Melbourne have been promoting paperless office set-ups to help businesses systematise their documents and safeguard sensitive data.

The advent of cloud storage has created an affordable, synchronised, and safe way of going paperless. Here is how you can create a paperless office system in 2021 to reduce dependency on hard copies of documents.

1. Create A Digital Working Environment

Going digital is the need of the hour. The recent pandemic made many businesses in Melbourne take the online route to manage their work and supply goods and services to their customers. Thus, it is highly desirable to make the transition as soon as possible.

However, do not expect everything to change overnight. You need to give time to your workers to acclimatise to the new working processes and train them in the proper utilisation of the tools. The first step should be to get rid of the photocopier, printer, and fax machine.

It would automatically reduce the usage of paper. If you do not want to remove them, you can limit their usage by keeping their access restricted or password protected. Reduce spending on cartridges and ink so that the available resources are used judiciously and only in the case of extreme need.

2. Use Cloud-Sharing and Accounting Software

Traditional bookkeeping utilised scores of papers for recordkeeping, billing, invoicing, and financial reporting. The latest technological advancements have made bookkeeping automated and less cumbersome.

The use of cloud-based accounting software allows businesses to reduce bookkeeping errors, save time and effort spent in data crunching and get real-time updates about financial transactions and reports.

Software like FreshBooks, Xero and QuickBooks are some of the leading names in the industry and offer customisable systems for all types of businesses in Melbourne. All the data is secured in the cloud and can be accessed only by the authorised employees and the bookkeeper.

3. Make Employees Responsible

The entire team at the workplace must work towards creating a paperless organisation, which means that they must avoid the use of personal diaries and notebooks for writing the minutes of the meeting.

It is much easier to type the memos and notes and arrange them carefully with the desired classification in the files. The technology makes the workstations more organised with the help of apps, such as Evernote, Microsoft OneNote, Apple Notes, Google Keep, etc.

These apps can be used on all digital devices and allow the addition of editors and have features to organise and arrange data meticulously. The orchestrated and well-presented files can be shared with others without the problem of confusion associated with handwriting.

4. Switch to Digital Signatures

Many significant documents and agreements get printed for getting the signatures of the management and the clients, suppliers, vendors, partners, etc. It can lead to a lot of wastage of paper every month in the company.

Thus, businesses in Melbourne must opt for e-signatures for all types of documents that require the sign of the management. Tools such as Adobe signature and DocuSign help in the digitisation of documents and reduce the dependency on paper.

The soft copies can be shared with others with the help of file sharing systems and can be protected with passwords. A few other tools for using e-signatures include You sign and HelloSign. Many bookkeepers use these for the signing of important financial documents in Melbourne.

5. Switch To Paperless Invoicing

Every Melbourne-based business generates tons of invoices and bills that lead to the accumulation of papers. Bookkeeping companies allow you to do away with this wasteful activity that can also compromise with the safety of confidential documents.

The most experienced bookkeepers recommend using online invoicing systems, which have helped in automation and bookkeeping. Some of the best systems available for businesses in Melbourne include Zoho Invoice and FreshBooks.

These systems help in generating invoices as soon as the project is completed and sending follow-up reminders to get the payments on time.

6. Opt For Online Fax Systems

The traditional fax machines consume a lot of paper. Thus, it makes sense to opt for online fax services that can be connected to the office software to allow inbound and outbound faxing without printing the documents first.

The fax services utilised by businesses in Melbourne include eFax, SR Fax, Hello Fax, Fax Better, RingCentral Fax, etc. Also, emailing is the best way to reduce the use of the outdated technology of faxing.

However, if you have to use the fax due to the imposition of the technology by some vendor or client, you must transition to the online system.

7. Document Management Software

Say goodbye to the filing cabinet and bring self-hosted or cloud-hosted document management software into the picture. Project management tools improve the productivity of the employees and reduce their workload.

The centralised system allows the use of the files by selected people who are working on the project and keeps the data safe from theft or breach. Apps such as Trello, Microsoft Project, Basecamp, etc., can help in creating files, storing, editing, and sharing them over a secure network.

The enterprise content management system is another advantageous tool that helps in managing the business content of the organisation.


The cost incurred by a paperless office has reduced considerably over the years and remote working has made the adoption of these technologies inevitable. Thus, entrepreneurs must listen to the recommendations of their bookkeepers in Melbourne and opt for the desired tools to go paperless.





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