Rekall previously posted articles on the importance of investing in both a good scanner and a solid backup process for your articles. The next step in moving toward a paperless office is developing a workflow. This is the process through which you’re going to take all the paper you need to deal with and find it a home.
We recommend that you develop a practice of keeping documents in your inbox until they’ve been scanned, no exceptions. Lawyerist.com adheres to this rule as the backbone of their workflow structure. After all, if you move to a paperless system, you’ll need to know that your digital files include everything they need to include.
Next, set up your workflow so that anything not in your inbox or in your filing cabinet is safe to shred. Once a document moves from your inbox to your scanner to your digital file, that document will likely need to be saved (if it is an original you need to keep), mailed to your client, or shredded. Get rid of whatever you can!
Remember that going paperless is meant to be efficient and helpful. Some firms don’t digitize files until they’re ready to be archived. While this helps get rid of paper piles that are no longer needed, it ignores all of the other advantages to going paperless, such as the ability to pull up files from multiple devices and the fact that anything digitized will be (better be!) archived.
There are many considerations when it comes to going paperless. The workflow is an important one. If you need help figuring out the best way to design your process, Rekall can help.