With the trend moving toward completely eliminating paper documents, it is essential to begin transferring your company’s physical files online. If you have a smart phone, scanning machine, and computer, you are already equipped with all the tools you need to organize your life. Records and receipts are now being digitized, along with paper bills and financial statements. It has become easier than ever to banish paper clutter and keep your files, photos, and miscellaneous papers in one area. Let’s look at some quick tips to help you switch from paper to computer.
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Opt for Paperless Billing
When you check your mailbox every day, the bulk of it includes bills in some form. Luckily, many banks, financial institutions, and utility services offer online bill-payment options. This not only allows you to track statements, but automatic payments can be set up from your bank accounts. For the documents you currently have in your possession, they can easily be uploaded to your computer utilizing a scanner and stored on secure sites encrypted for ultimate privacy and protection.
Archive Records Electronically
This can be difficult for many who turn towards the traditional route of storing paperwork in file cabinets, but even major divisions within the country have begun converting files. For example, the IRS not only has digital files, but they also accept digital copies of tax returns. Most documents such as letters, mortgage records, and financial documents can be scanned and converted. These archives can be saved indefinitely and are easily accessible with the click of a mouse. If you have sensitive documents you no longer need after this process use a service like Vital Records Control to shred or destroy them so you don’t have to worry about extra copies getting loose.
Organize Digital Documents
Once you have uploaded all your documents, you may wonder what to do with them. There are plenty of online programs available, such as Evernote, which allow users to import e-mails, photographs, files, and PDFs. Subsequently, individuals can categorize their files, type out notes, and add tags in order to quickly find what they are looking for. While Evernote’s basic version is free, there are additional features for an added fee of $5 per month.
Back Up and Store Files
Along with saving and organizing your documents to your computer, it is essential to back up files on both an external hard drive as well as a secure online database. Online storage services such as Google Drive, Dropbox, and iCloud enable individuals to gain access to files anywhere that they have an internet connection. Essentially, it is a hard drive that exists on the internet with top-notch security features. Back-ups can be scheduled so you can rest assured that your files are always protected.
There are an abundance of ways to move your physical files online while still keeping their integrity and confidentiality. The number of programs available to store, organize, and back up your records continues to grow. With technological advances, society is moving away from the traditional paper copies and converting to digital.
By Brooke Chaplan