No announcement yet.

Paperless Office

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Paperless Office

    Sometime during the month of July or August, can there be a discussion on how to take the step to convert to a paperless office.

    Of particular note would be those of us that are on a limited budget and can not afford to integrate with an expensive software like Creative Solutions, CCH, Lacerte, etc.

    How to approach the conversion, acquiring the hardware, finding the software, accomplish the task.

    I guess the question is where in the world do we start??? What do we look for?




    I have been paperless for 2 years and I find it great. I have remote access to my computers and can access all client documents from anywhere. But then I have CS's filecabinet.

    But I didn't always have it. Before that I had a program called Paper Master and it did a fine job of anything I wanted to scan or print into it. Paper Master was eventually bought out by PPC (CS) and they now sell it in single pc version. To buy an network version cost extra.

    I kept my '98 version which allows full networking and did not upgrade with the later versions. Are you a single pc user or network user? By the way, my '98 version works with XP even though it warns me of possibly not being compatible with XP.

    When you buy a scanner you will probably get a free version of "Paper Port" which does an OK job in scanning. I have not used it very much and can't really comment on how it will classify client documents, but I know that you can manually scan or print to the program. It does have files and folders so you could accomplish what you want very low cost.

    The advantage of Creative Solutions' File Cabinet is the automatic storage of any printed document from CS's programs.

    Scanners are another whole topic. I have not had much luck with the multi purpose scanners, ( printer - scanner- copier) inkjets. Stay with the laser type. I like the flat bead with ADF (Auto Document Feeder). The flat bed I use for those small pieces of paper like the old style W-2s, post-its, and 1099 w/witholdings. The ADF I use with regular paper, one or multi-page scanning. You do not want a flat bed only scanner. The real cheap ones are very slow with poor quality. I use the HP5550c and I like it. But there are others that like other types of ADF scanners. Be ready to spend $300 for a decent scanner and more for some. My scanner runs about $300 list, street price is slightly less.

    I don't know what stage you are in in your search for a paperless office but the above may be helpful if you are at the beggining phase.
    Last edited by BOB W; 07-02-2005, 05:59 AM.
    This post is for discussion purposes only and should be verified with other sources before actual use.

    Many times I post additional info on the post, Click on "message board" for updated content.


      Paperless Office

      I haven't seen it yet, but Drake has told its users that the tools to go paperless will be included in this years software.


        Less Paper

        To address the question of where to start:

        My office has started with our 1040 returns and reduced what we keep on them. Number one be sure to have a solid back up of the computer files as they become essential. Eliminate those client files sitting in your filing cabinets.
        Retain one copy of the W2 and the 8879/8453. Retain any 'odd' or unique documents.

        We do not scan in the W2s or other source documents as the vast majority are never viewed again. Rather when we need to get one we go to a bankers box that has the "kit" for each 1040 which includes the W2s and 8879. Once in a while there will be a unique document we may retain or scan into the system.

        We found this to be a cost effective starting point and have not kept a paper copy of a 1040 tax return since 1998 while at the same time we don't spent countless hours scanning in source documents on returns that are likely never to be viewed again.

        For our "major" clients we scan in everything. For those in between we keep a small number of paper files as needed until we can truly get to no paper!

        Others will certainly have different opinions.