The Paperless Office in the Cloud: The Future of Business? - Part 9: Our Mobile Society will be Powered by Digital Documents in the Cloud

Our Mobile Society will be Powered by Digital Documents in the Cloud

(#9 in a series.)


Last time we discussed why we need to simplify in order to break through to the next level of business performance and how digital document management and cloud computing make that possible.  Now let's consider an exploding trend being enabled by the paperless office in the cloud:  Mobility Computing.

It is estimated that 75% of us will be mobile workers by 2011.  That seems like a high percentage, but think about how you work now.  Even if you spend forty hours a week at the office, you also probably now have a smartphone capable of handling email when you are away from your desk.  Recent breakthroughs to more powerful tablet computing increased bandwidth make a mobile flexible work style even more practical.  More and more of us are spending some portion of prime office hours visiting clients, working in satellite offices or telecommuting from home.  Many of our clients have instituted flexible work-from-home schedules to conserve gas as prices have risen - working from home one day a week saves 20% of commuting costs, and that can save time and money as well as make a significant impact in reducing our dependence on oil.  

As we interface with our offices remotely and with co-workers who are off-site, it's becoming obvious that the challenge is being able to work as efficiently and productively when you are away from the office as you can when you are there.  A key component of this equation is access to business documents which contain the 80% of business content that is unstructured and not available in databases.  

We're getting used to finding anything we need by just searching with Google or Bing, anything, that is, except the business documents we need to be productive in our jobs.  But why shouldn't it be just that easy?  Certainly, the next generation of knowledge workers entering the workforce will expect that kind of instant access to all work-related content to be a fundamental capability.  Digital business document solutions and cloud computing are making that a practical reality now.  The cost, speed and security advantages of cloud-based enterprise document management systems are accelerating the pace of deployment of mobile capabilities.

One of our customers, an international media giant, reports that one of the things that their knowledge workers like best about their paperless accounts payable vendor invoice workflow solution is the ability to perform their jobs effectively when they are away from the office.  We all have had the experience in which we are suddenly called away from the office to deal with a personal issue.  It's a relief to know that we can still handle that important issue that must be resolved today while we're away.  The increased flexibility and freedom made possible by paperless office solutions and cloud computing will continue to drive the rapid adoption of these technologies in the future.

Next time, we'll take a look at why the green movement is business is gaining traction and the green advantages of the paperless office and cloud computing.

Until then,

John Queen