Businesses have been encouraged for years – if not decades – to go paperless. But while there is still a sustained push for a paperless business world, many companies, organizations, and industries continue to need certain printed materials and documents. Of course, implementing a digital workflow is often preferable. Paper documents (and waste) are a burden on the environment, and take up physical space that might have better uses. Digital documents eliminate a possible point of contact for transfer of contagions such as Covid. And, with so many people now working from home, digitized documents often make sense for easier access from anywhere.

Paperless Documents Won’t Go Away Any Time Soon

But paper is not going to go away entirely – at least for the foreseeable future. For example, many government contracts and paperwork still require a physical signature (sometimes called a “wet” signature) on certain documents. Also, many government application processes require physical signature along with notarization – in the form of an in-person witness – for important legal matters such as birth, death, and marriage certificates, some business affidavits (such as an application to be a state-accredited education provider, as well as wills, proxy statements, and healthcare directives. While this is changing with the advent of e-signatures and online documents, print still has its place.

When You Should Go Physical Vs. Digitized Documents

Digitizing documents that can be easily managed virtually is definitely a good option. But sometimes physical collateral is necessary. This is especially true when it comes to marketing and branding. For example, eye-catching business cards, glossy annual reports, and thoughtful greeting cards can have a positive impact on consumers, clients, board members, and other strategic partners. Restaurant menus, medication instructions, and other consumer pamphlets are also important to offer in a paper form. Sure, email and online information can be helpful, but paper is still often best.

What about those documents that could go either way? Let’s say you are doing an important presentation for the entire office. Should you go paperless, and send the handouts via a PDF file in an email? Or should you provide pre-collated and stapled documents to your listeners in advance of the talk? What about a document collaboration? Should it be digitized, or is your team stuck on the idea that it’s easier to pass around a document that everyone has marked up and noted on by hand?

As you can see, there are certain documents, like business cards or posters, that need to be on paper. Other materials can go either way, and depend on what works best for each individual company. So, while some businesses might be able to get away with going 100% completely paperless, paperless isn’t for everybody.

How a Document Management Solution Can Help

The right document management solution can help transition your team to paperless when it is warranted and needed, while helping manage your physical assets that may still be necessary. One of the best uses for a document management solution is collaboration. This is especially important in the modern era of remote or hybrid work. With document management, your team can collaborate securely to comment, modify, and share documents – all with a streamlined, easy-to-follow workflow. Gone will be the days where a document might get left on a desk – or lost in a bevy of emails. With a cloud-based solution, your team can access important documents securely, no matter where they are, whether from the remote office or even their car. Document management also helps with proper digitization and indexing of paper documents.

Need to complement your document management with improved workflows for your print documents? Managed print services is a solution enabling professional management and remote monitoring for your entire printer fleet. This is the perfect companion to document management, as it also includes the management of devices such as scanners, copiers, and MFPs (multifunction printers). With the best, top-of-the-line MFPs, you can create professional printed documents for those times you really can’t go paperless. With wide-format MFPs and others with options for collation, high quality printing, and even stapling, your company can print those necessary glossy annual reports on-site.

Your Document Management and Print Solutions Provider

Whether you want to go fully paperless with document management, or also need managed print services, Mac Copy can help. Our expert consultants can help determine the best solutions for your particular business needs. Then, our team will help you implement your best solution for maximum productivity.

Need document management or print solutions? Mac Copy is your trusted document and print solutions provider. Contact us today! And, follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter to stay up to date on all our latest blog posts.