The concept of going paperless can be quite a scary thought and for some of our clients was a huge no. However, with the technology available to us today and the various apps that we can provide that link into your accounting software, it is actually an extremely easy process and can help to save you time and money!
Part of my role with Revis & Co is business development and digital transformation. What this means is to look at what technology is available to us and what technology will help our business and our client's businesses. The first logical step is to start with our business and test what technology is there before getting our clients to use it.
Our journey to start to go paperless started in May 2017, when we moved our accounting software into the cloud and adopted QuickBooks Online. This was a big move for the company and was the first time any cloud software had been used. There were plenty of advantages to moving to the cloud (which will be covered in a later video/ blog) but the one we will cover today is the built-in auto email system that can be used for sending out our monthly invoices. Previously, to send our monthly invoices we would manually create them all, print them on headed paper, and then send them out in the post. Moving to QuickBooks Online meant that we could set up auto invoicing and email all of our invoices each month without having to do anything. This saved us time and money as we were no longer printing and sending invoices. This was our first step in moving to a paperless office.
Now that our sales invoices were paperless, it was time to start looking at our purchases. Jump forward to October 2018 and we started to trial HubDoc. HubDoc is a document and data capture software that can be used to extract data from your invoices and receipts and post these to QuickBooks Online. This was a great starting point for us to start experimenting with what receipt capture software there is available to us.
Move forward a few months to February 2019 and we had moved over to using Receipt Bank (now Dext). This was a huge step for the business as it was at this time we decided to adopt this for all of our clients. Receipt Bank was very similar to HubDoc, but in our opinion was more refined and easier to use. From this point, we were no longer printing and filing purchases invoices and all receipts were being captured using the mobile app and then being binned as Receipt Bank is fully HMRC compliant. Gone were also the days of having to dig out receipts as everything is available easily within QuickBooks to be downloaded if needs be.
With both our purchases and our sales now being paperless, we have found big time and money savings, the money savings mainly being in printing and stationery.
With it now being 2022, the company is completely paperless with the only things being printed are our letters to HMRC as all accounts are now digitally signed with clients receiving a PDF copy of their accounts so they too have easy access to them whenever they need them. All post received is now scanned in and saved in the cloud and working papers are no longer printed but saved in the cloud.
So what benefits have we seen? The obvious ones are time benefits and cost savings. This is very easy to see how anyone could benefit from time and cost savings but one of the other benefits we have seen is our eco-impact. We have not ordered paper for more than 2 years now (covid also impacting this) which also means that our impact on the environment is less which is a big area which we would like to improve on.
So all in all, going paperless may be a scary thought but the benefits of doing it outweigh any negatives you may have. We have a lot of technology available to us now which can help you and we can also help you to get started.