With the rapid uptake of computing devices since the beginning of the current digital age, it’s becoming increasingly clear that traditional document use and storage is something of a relic for some organisations. For those who need to keep a large amount of customer or member information on hand and accessible, for instance, the days of filing cabinets and manila folders are becoming a thing of the past.
From a cost, accessibility and organisational standpoint, transitioning to a digital document solution makes sense. An entire room’s worth of papers can now easily be stored on hard drives smaller than a deck of cards – or more commonly nowadays in the cloud, meaning physical storage is essentially non-existent. Also the ability to use search terms to find whatever you are looking for means sifting through stacks of paperwork is no longer a concern.
For some Australian education providers, taking the initiative to go digital has solved a number of problems. Let’s take a look at a couple of examples.
Keeping student information up to date
According to PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), the year 2020 will mark the first moment where a whole generation of people have grown up entirely in the digital age. With the modern education system responsible for preparing these young people for their future, it makes sense that schools would need to adapt themselves.
Keeping track of essential student information through traditional means was presenting a great challenge for Canberra Grammar School, with a cumbersome workflow potentially affecting the accuracy of their records.
“People just don’t like filling in paper forms anymore; they prefer to do these things by email or online,” says Sally Gates, operations manager for the school.
Through collaboration with Fuji Xerox, a more effective system for updating information was put in place, making it easier for not only school staff, but parents as well.
“We’ve had a brilliant response to it – absolutely incredible,” says Gates.
Cutting costs through reduced paper use
Beyond the administrative benefits of digitalisation, there are also attractive financial savings to be had. The large volume of paper use at Trinity College in Perth was leading to many thousands of dollars in printing expenses every year, but by cutting their reliance on physical documents, they experienced significant savings.
“The College is down from five million to about four million pieces of paper a year, and probably saving about $25,000 annually,” says bursar Michael Burgess.