Chances are someone has traipsed through your cubicle recently, spouting off about become a paperless office. Trust me, in the scheme of pitches, paperless office initiatives are reaching the same hype-cycle in my inbox that telepresence and videoconferencing technologies as a green tool did maybe six months ago. You can at least partially credit all the regulatory compliance initiatives that have made companies of every size reflect within about their document and content management strategies.
But there definitely is a very good reason for getting grips on your printing habits. Did you know the average document is printed five times? And then probably thrown out after being skimmed by some speed-reading colleague that you felt had to be copied on the information. The cover-your-ass (CYA) mindset has definitely been bad for wasteful paper consumption, and for your e-mail inbox clutter.
Where can you turn for some "light" background reading on how to get started taming the paper beast? Well, pretty much any printer vendor or content management software provider has got you covered with their particular twist on the topic, but there are two organizations who have been focusing more practical resources on this topic lately. Yes, they are industry associations that have a vested interested in selling technology that fits in the paperless office masterplan. So, the information on the two links I'm about to provide is definitely self-interested. But it could provide a starting point for your own questions.
The first is the Paperless Project Coalition, which is a group of vendors involved with document management including Square 9 Softworks and its systems integration unit, InfiNet Business Systems, as well as Microsoft, Kofax, Westbrook Fortis, BISCOM and Paradatec.
Second, I'd suggest peeking over at the site for the Association for Information and Image Management (AIIM), where you'll find more information about how changes in your business' document processing habits could save you money and help your environmental messaging. Here's a sample article.