The Paperless Office in the Cloud: The Future of Business? - Part 3: The Top 3 Business Drivers of the Movement to the Cloud and the Paperless Office

The Top 3 Business Drivers of the Movement to the Cloud and the Paperless Office

(#3 in a series.)

So, what do you think the top 3 drivers of cloud computing are?  Interestingly, they are the same as the top 3 drivers of the paperless office:  Cost, Speed and Security.

Companies are looking to cut costs, and improve speed to market, and they need to lock down security to prevent identity theft, fraud, corporate espionage, and also to meet regulatory compliance mandates.

So, let's look at the parallels between the drivers of the Paperless Office and the move to Cloud Computing.

Cloud Computing:

Cloud computing dramatically reduces the cost of implementing a new capability.  There's no capital expenditure, and rather than having to acquire sufficient hardware to provide for peak demands you pay as you go, and for only the capacity and bandwidth that you actually use.  

Provisioning a solution is much faster in the cloud because the resources are already available, and you simply have to enroll to begin using them.  

Security is enhanced because documents and data are not stored in file cabinets and on local hard drives.  Cloud data centers are secure, hardened facilities with power and communication redundancies and layers of encryption to ensure the protection of sensitive information.

Paperless Document Solutions:

Paperless document solutions save the costs of hardware and consumables needed to produce high-volume print documents like checks, invoices, purchase orders, statements, reports, confirmations, etc.  Electronic form applications eliminate the need of printing the forms and the time and labor required to enter the information collected on the forms.  Handling and distribution costs are also eliminated.  

Inbound paper documents can be captured by scanning, and documents can be automatically extracted from fax and email.  Intelligent capture can extract key content from inbound documents, and digital documents can speed through an approval and posting process because you're moving "bits vs. atoms" to quote a phrase coined by Nicholas Negroponte, head of the MIT Media Lab, in his book, Being Digital.

Security is enhanced because many of the touch points associated with producing and distributing paper documents are eliminated.  Pre-printed check stock doesn’t have to be secured, and sensitive documents are protected from being misplaced and accessed in file storage by unauthorized individuals.

These factors are accelerating the adoption rate of both Cloud Computing and The Paperless (or "Less Paper") Office.  In our next installments we’ll take a closer look at each of these key business drivers.

Until next time,

John Queen