Eliminating paper from daily business tasks might be impossible, but even if you can’t go entirely paperless, you can still put practices in place to reduce the volume of paper files your business accumulates.
Start by establishing a records management program that incorporates best practices. Two key best practices include identifying the types of records each department creates and recognizing the appropriate retention periods for all records. Your retention periods are based on how long records must be kept to meet state and federal regulations. In addition, establishing an effective retention schedule can help your business reduce its paper footprint as you detail exactly what records you need to keep and for how long.
These steps put you in control of the growth of paper files because document destruction at the correct time is better than never disposing of information and without retention periods, everything might be kept, which can, unfortunately, hurt your business.
After files have met their retention period, do not toss the information in the trash. Instead, securely destroy the documents by shredding and recycling all paper waste. Small amounts of paper can normally be handled in house. For larger shredding jobs, you may consider seeking out a third party that will provide you with a certificate of destruction.
It’s obvious that there are ways to reduce your paper footprint. What practices are you implementing at your business?
Photo by Wolfgang Lonien