Much has been said about the demise of paper in the digital workplace, one that relies solely on digital documents and processes to get the job done, from serving customers to taking meeting notes.

While more companies are digitising their business processes, paper remains an effective communication medium that’s hard to wean off completely. Some workers still find that it’s easier on the eye to read off a piece of paper than on a screen, while others prefer to annotate on physical documents rather than use digital annotation tools.

Indeed, demand for paper documents is set to rise, especially in the Asia-Pacific region. In India, consumption of paper is expected to double to 20 million tonnes each year by 2020. A similar trend is also playing out in China, where paper production has been growing steadily.

Managing the growing use of paper, and integrating paper-based documents into digital workflows, however, can challenging to organisations with limited IT resources.

A quick and easy way to start would be to look to scanning solutions in the form of multi-functional devices (MFDs), a class of printing devices with the ability to digitise physical documents and pushing them through digital workflows. Once scanned and stored on an organisation’s cloud document management service, the documents can be easily searched, retrieved and reprinted if necessary.

Increasingly, more MFPs can connect to a variety of industry-leading cloud services, enabling workers to print their documents on-demand, wherever they are. They can also hook up to business applications, letting organisations orchestrate business workflows, such as scanning a physical copy of a customer feedback form, extracting the data in the form, and routeing the information to a customer service representative within the company.

Many MFDs also come with a strong suite of scanning capabilities that are useful to an organisation.

For example, paper invoices can be scanned into PDF files, which can be sent to the finance manager’s e-mail account and filed automatically in designated folders in the company’s file server. The same invoice can also be routed to a finance system for further processing.

Print mobility and security features can also be included in the MFDs to provide a more holistic solution to digitising your workflows. Thus enabling a more mobile workforce in a secured environment whilst supporting your enterprise’s sustainability initiatives.

Learn how Fuji Xerox Smart Work Innovation can help you embark into a mobile workforce through the integration of your paper and digital documents. Email us for more information at now!

The opinions expressed by the writers and those providing comments are theirs alone and do not reflect the opinions of Fuji Xerox Smart Work Innovation, or the management. Fuji Xerox Smart Work Innovation is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writers.