How a Mac Office goes paperless

When it comes to the environment we all want to do our part as entrepreneurs and startups to reduce waste, one aspect is to go paperless. Here are some of the issues:

  • Hardware: Scanner
  • Hardware: Storage
  • Hardware: Shredder
  • Software: Paperless Office Software
  • Software: Productivity Tools
  • Analog tools: Paper Organizers for when you HAVE to have real paper.

So here are the sequential steps to go paperless:

  1. Analog and Digital Analysis. Here is where you need to look at your business processes and see what analog processes can be digitized. See page 201 of my book How to Start a Business: Mac Version for a more detailed analysis.
  2. Digital Workflow. Here is where you purposely use software that will do things digitally, such as signing contracts online, see the next section to understand some of these solutions.
  3. Never Print, Print to PDF. The first part of going paperless is never print anything out, unless you have to. In this case, send a Print > Print to PDF (lower left hand corner button) and send the document as a PDF to someone if all they need is a copy of a document, not something which needs to be edited and collaborated on.
  4. Save Online Web Receipts as PDFs. Under the Print to PDF menu button you choose to send a PDF to a previously set up folder, such as a default one called “Web Receipts” (Or, make a new PDF folder somewhere and then Print > Print to PDF > Edit Menu to edit the menu and add your new folder to the list).
  5. Request Digital Copies/Bills. Nowadays, most companies want to be green so they’re asking us if they can send us bills and other documents as digital version of the paper ones.
  6. Scan to Mac. If you do get paper documents, have a scanner scan them as PDFs onto your Mac.
  7. Outsource. You can outsource some of your paper documents, such as tax information and receipts to CPA firms, that will create digital files of your papers for you.
  8. Go to the Cloud. Having digital files off site, upload to a backup directory on your web site, or sent to Google Mail as a “backup” in case of the need to access them.
  9. Archive your digital files. This is a huge aspect of going paperless, since you may NOT have the paper versions of your documents, and I would recommend you DO have critical documents in paper form, preferably wrapped in plastic (to prevent water damage), and in a fireproof container.

Here is a list of potential products and processes that will help you clean out your wastepaper basket.

  • Mariner Paperless software ($50) – digital document filing system.
  • iDocument ($50) – for going paperless.
  • Evernote (Free + Premium) – captures just about anything digitally.
  • DEVONthink ($150) – captures more than just papers and can be used with ScanSnap scanners below.
  • PDFpen ($60) – is Mac software that allows for annotating PDFs.
  • Yojimbo ($100) – a digital organizer.
  • FormulatePro software – allows you to annotate PDFs by being able to sign contracts, etc.
  • Docusign – can be used by an iPhone or iPad
  • Scanners – see any number of Mac hardware scanners (preferably ADF, Automatic Document Feeder capable) that scan documents into PDF.
  • Fijitsu ScanSnap scanners – check out these small business scanners for offices that require more digital document volume.

Here’s some reviews or links of others ways of going paperless using a Mac:

There you have it, what are your thoughts about going paperless? Do you have any solutions that you like?

 

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BlogTalkRadio, Hollis Chapman Show, Feb 25th

Hollis Chapman

If you’re interested in hearing me explain how entrepreneurs and startups can use the Mac in their business, check out the Hollis Chapman Show and my interview with Hollis discussing Macs used in startups. I had a great time talking with him and his listeners about Macs in startups. You’ll get a great feel for what it takes to get started in your own business. I discuss why use a Mac, how to make money using a Mac, how to set up your business and get your first customer, how to use the Mac’s built-in software to advertise using a Mac, and other questions. Check it out.

Here’s what we were discussing for about 45 minutes:

  • Tell us a little about yourself,and your new book.
  • Why Mac?
  • Why do you think more people do not use Macs?
  • Pros and Cons of Macs
  • How to make money with your Mac?
  • How to set up your business the right way the first time.
  • How to implement your business plan and get your first customer.
  • How to use your Mac’s built-in software to affordably advertise your business and attract new customers.
  • What are a few steps for using Mac for startups?
  • For what do you want to be remembered professionally?

 

Listen to internet radio with hollischapmanshow on Blog Talk Radio
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