Two Hands Shaking, One Drowning In Paper

What ever happened to the paperless office?

The paperless office. In the 1970s, it was a prophecy of the impending tech boom, up there with predictions that every home would one day have a computer. In 1975, Businessweek published an article about The Office of the Future. “The use of paper in business for records and correspondence should be declining by 1980 and by 1990, most record-handling will be electronic,” it read.

Flash forward to 2016. And a student filling out a paper financial aid application with pen in hand.

We’re definitely not paperless just yet. But is it time to finally send paper to the shredder, even in regulated application-based industries like banking, healthcare and financial aid? We think so. Considering people can apply for loans, access medical records via Apps, and fill out the FAFSA online, we’re not sure why resistance to paperless remains.

Paperless Is Best

Why go paperless? There’s no shortage of reasons. Chief among them:

  • Productivity: Digital records reduce duplication. Less data entry is involved, and they are much easier to file, organize, track, and manage.
  • Security: Paper can be destroyed. Easily. Digital files are simply and safely stored and backed-up.
  • Environmental friendliness: We don’t have to tell you: using paper is an environmental faux pas. Don’t be pacified by the thought of recycling: paper is still one of the biggest sources of solid waste at our landfills. Not to mention the public is increasingly wary of un-green business practices.
  • Space savings: A hard drive’s a lot smaller than a wall of filing cabinets. And cloud-based solutions eliminate storage needs completely.
  • Productivity: Digital records reduce duplication. Less data entry is involved, and they are much easier to file, organize, track, and manage.

Why the time is now

These benefits have been common knowledge for years, yet the paperless office hasn’t fully caught on. But the time wasn’t right. It is now. The public is now ready for it. They want to do away with paper.

It’s true that we’ve been a world that works on computers for a couple of decades now. But our PCs were wired to printers. Making a paper copy of something was as simple as pressing Control-P.

Today, ownership of mobile technology like smartphones and tablets is at an all-time high. More web searches originate from mobile devices than from PCs. We’re in the midst of a technological revolution. A revolution that will allow us to fully do away with paper—even forms.

Lead The Charge, Higher Ed

Higher education is a prime place for this final paperless wave to start—CampusLogic has been advocating for a paperless FinAid office for years. Millennials have the highest mobile device ownership rate. Use of paper has been declining in the U.S. as of late. Why? Some have pointed to a younger generation less likely to print out pages and more likely to read them on-screen.

Millennials are the most likely to be using a mobile device to navigate their life decisions – including education and financial aid. They don’t want to be filling out a hardcopy application. So why are we forcing them to? Paperless can make your life easier, and your students happier.

Let’s do our part to fulfill the paperless office prophecy.

 Free your FinAid office from paper weight >