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Mar 1, 2024 · 6 min read

The paperless advantage: transform business into digital format

Discover the types of digital transformations, and how going paperless streamlines workflows. Make use of best practices too!

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Any business that aims for long-term success is constantly seeking ways to enhance their operations and stay ahead of the competition. One of the most significant digital transformations taking place is the shift towards a paperless office. By digitizing processes and reducing reliance on physical documents, organizations can streamline workflows, improve efficiency, and unlock a range of benefits. In this article, we will explore the concept of digital transformation, its various types, and the advantages of going paperless.

What is Digital Transformation?

Digital transformation refers to the process of leveraging digital technologies to improve business processes, enhance customer experiences, and drive innovation. It involves the integration of digital tools and strategies into all aspects of an organization, leading to improved efficiency, productivity, and competitiveness. Rather than being a one-time event, digital transformation is an ongoing journey that requires continuous adaptation.

The four types of digital transformation

Digital transformation can manifest in different ways, depending on the specific goals and needs of an organization. There are four primary types of digital transformation:
  • Process transformation: this type focuses on leveraging technology to optimize existing business processes, improve efficiency, and reduce costs. It involves automating repetitive tasks, streamlining workflows, and minimizing manual data entry. By implementing process transformation, organizations can eliminate bottlenecks, increase operational agility, and enhance overall productivity.
  • Business model transformation: business model transformation involves using technology to fundamentally change how products or services are delivered to customers. It may involve creating new revenue streams, exploring innovative distribution channels, or developing digital products and services. By embracing business model transformation, organizations can adapt to evolving customer preferences and market trends, opening up new growth opportunities.
  • Domain transformation: domain transformation entails expanding into new markets or industries by leveraging digital tools and platforms. It involves using technology to reach a broader customer base, target new segments, or enter previously untapped territories. By embracing domain transformation, organizations can extend their reach, enhance customer engagement, and drive business expansion.
  • Cultural/organizational transformation: cultural or organizational transformation focuses on leveraging digital tools to reshape the way people work and collaborate within an organization. It involves fostering a digital-first culture, promoting remote work capabilities, and implementing collaboration platforms. By embracing cultural transformation, organizations can enhance employee satisfaction, improve communication and collaboration, and drive innovation.
Each type of digital transformation offers unique opportunities for businesses to enhance their operations, meet evolving customer demands, and gain a competitive edge in the market.

Examples of digital transformation

Numerous well-known brands have successfully undergone significant transformations by leveraging new technologies:
  • Disney revolutionized the customer experience at its parks and resorts with its MagicBand digital wristbands, enabling guests to unlock their hotel rooms, pay for meals, and book tickets.
  • Domino’s Pizza has emerged as a leading example of digital transformation, introducing digital ordering via a mobile app, voice-activated ordering, and a pizza tracker.
  • Porsche is focusing on three core areas: products and services, customers and trade, and the company itself. They are developing a Porsche ecosystem integrating all digital services, extending beyond just driving. They are also focusing on digitalisation in sales and aiming to have state-of-the-art workplaces and efficient processes.
  • The Austin Company, a firm offering architectural, engineering, design-build, and construction management services used to rely heavily on paper forms for their inspections. This made the process longer and created room for human error, making document management difficult. They implemented the process transformation - leveraged technology to optimize their existing business process (inspections), thereby improving efficiency and reducing costs. The move to a paperless system helped automate the data entry task, streamlined the workflow, and minimized manual errors, all of which are key aspects of process transformation.

How to go paperless: best practices

As we can see from the Austin Company example above, going paperless is a key aspect in process transformation. We will talk about the advantages of doing so later in the article, but for now - let’s explore how a business can turn into one.
To successfully transition to a paperless office, a company should follow a structured approach and consider the following best practices.

Assess current processes

Conduct a thorough assessment of existing paper-based processes and identify areas that can be digitized or streamlined. This includes analyzing document flows, storage requirements, and associated costs.

Invest in document management systems

Implement robust document management systems or software that enable secure storage, retrieval, and collaboration of digital documents. Choose a system that aligns with your business needs, offers advanced search capabilities, and ensures data security - for instance, Enty. It can help you to manage key back-office processes related to document and contract management, as well as deal with finances and hiring.

Digitize existing paper documents

Scan and convert physical documents into digital formats using document scanners or outsourcing services. Ensure that the scanned documents are properly indexed, tagged, and organized for easy retrieval.

Implement digital workflows

Digitize workflows and automate processes to reduce manual intervention and improve efficiency. Use workflow automation tools to streamline approval processes, reduce bottlenecks, and enhance productivity.

Train employees

Provide comprehensive training to employees on digital tools, document management systems, and best practices for working with digital documents. Encourage adoption and address any concerns or resistance to change.

Establish document retention policies

Develop and enforce document retention policies to ensure compliance with legal and regulatory requirements. Determine document retention periods, establish protocols for document disposal, and regularly review and update policies as needed.

Ensure data security

Implement robust security measures to protect digital documents from unauthorized access or data breaches. This includes encryption, access controls, secure backups, and regular security audits.

Promote a paperless culture

Foster a culture of digitalization and sustainability within the organization. Encourage employees to embrace digital tools, discourage printing unnecessary documents, and promote eco-friendly practices.
By following these best practices, businesses can successfully transition to a paperless office and harness the full potential of digital transformation.

The advantages of going paperless

It’s now time to discuss a few of the key advantages of a paperless approach.

Improved efficiency and productivity

By digitizing processes and reducing reliance on paper-based documents, organizations can streamline workflows and improve overall efficiency. Digital documents can be easily accessed, searched, and shared, saving time spent on manual document handling and retrieval. For instance, with Enty’s contract management service you can easily open and share any signed document at any time, as well as sign them right inside the control panel. This allows employees to focus on value-added tasks, leading to increased productivity and operational effectiveness.

Cost savings

Going paperless can result in substantial cost savings for businesses. By eliminating the need for physical storage space, businesses can reduce expenses associated with file cabinets, storage facilities, and document management systems. Additionally, the costs of paper, ink, printing equipment, and maintenance are eliminated or significantly reduced. Over time, these cost savings can be redirected towards other strategic initiatives or invested in growing the business.

Enhanced data security and compliance

Digital documents offer improved data security and compliance compared to their physical counterparts. With proper encryption, access controls, and data backup measures, organizations can protect sensitive information from unauthorized access, loss, or damage. Digital documents also facilitate compliance with data protection regulations, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), by enabling secure storage, access controls, and audit trails.

Streamlined collaboration and communication

Digital documents and collaboration tools enable seamless communication and collaboration among team members, regardless of their physical location. With cloud-based storage and collaboration platforms, multiple users can simultaneously access, edit, and comment on documents, fostering real-time collaboration and increasing productivity. This eliminates the need for physical document transfers, reduces communication delays, and enhances overall teamwork.

Environmental sustainability

Of course, going paperless contributes to environmental sustainability by reducing paper consumption and minimizing the carbon footprint associated. By embracing digital documents, businesses can reduce deforestation, water consumption, and energy usage, thereby minimizing their impact on the environment. This aligns with corporate social responsibility goals and enhances the brand's reputation as an environmentally conscious organization.

Improved disaster recovery and business continuity

Physical documents are vulnerable to various risks, such as fire, floods, or theft. By digitizing documents and storing them on platforms like Enty, businesses can ensure data resilience and improved disaster recovery capabilities. In the event of a physical disaster or data loss, digital documents can be easily restored, minimizing downtime and ensuring business continuity.

Scalability and flexibility

Digital documents offer scalability and flexibility for growing businesses. As organizations expand, the need for additional physical storage space and resources can be eliminated - more and more organizations are choosing digital offices over physical ones. Digital documents can be easily scaled to accommodate increasing data volumes without the need for physical infrastructure upgrades. Additionally, documents can be accessed from anywhere, enabling remote work capabilities and facilitating flexible work arrangements.


Digital transformation is reshaping the business landscape, and going paperless is a crucial aspect of this transformation. By embracing digital tools and virtual offices, organizations can unlock a range of benefits: efficiency, cost savings, environmental sustainability and more. With careful planning and investment in the right technologies, you can successfully transition to a paperless office. In the meantime, Enty will always be here to support your journey and help move towards a digital future.
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