Face it, printing costs money. Depending on your printer, toner, paper and other consumables, it can be really expensive to print hardcopies unless they are absolutely necessary. While commercial real estate simply can not operate in a completely paperless environment due to required legal contracts and required reporting, the days of printing without forethought have passed.
Business as a whole has become leaner and more streamlined and the commercial real estate arena is no exception. Printing requires file cabinets for all those needless papers while printing only those legally required permits smaller file rooms with fewer expensive file cabinets and manpower to file, pull and re-file paper.
Every email doesn’t need to be printed. Key facts from emails such as contact numbers, website URLs, and lead information can be stored electronically in your email contacts and the actual email can be archived to your hard drive, thumb drive, or placed in a centralized storage location if you feel it really must be saved for reference.
Because so many projects require two or more people to access files, storage on centralized data banks either online or as part of your intranet can reduce the need for excess printing. Dropbox.com allows large files to be stored in shared directories for access by those users given permission to access and edit them. Google Docs provides a very viable solution for smaller files to be shared, accessed from any computer with internet access by the file owner, as well as others given permission by the owner to edit or view the spreadsheets, presentations or documents. Cloud storage is the latest means of sharing documents. The term simply refers to the cyber cloud of data stored on the internet for access by those given permission.
Receipt scanning devices permit storage of those tiny pieces of paper as electronic data. These inexpensive portable devices easily fit inside a briefcase and connect to a computer via an available USB port so that important business cards and important tax receipts can be stored in an organized manner rather than misplaced or stuffed into a flimsy folder until needed again.
Companies focused on saving environmental resources as well as printing costs no longer allow employees to print and pass around jokes and other non-business data. When something truly needs to be printed, recycled toner and ink cartridges reduce the cost. Using recycled bond paper makes yet another dent in the expenses associated with printing.
It may seem as if paper printing expenses in the office are not a large expensive, but if you focus on printing responsibly, you will find the savings add up and up quite quickly. You’ll realize time savings and reduction in the tedious task of filing hard copy information that may not be needed again.