How Customer Migrations to Digital Workflows Could Be Impacting Your Bottom Line

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Everywhere we look there is evidence that the way people work and live their lives is changing and fast.  From Amazon Prime offering free next day delivery to Uber and Lyft changing the way we move around, there is no denying that technology and business models are becoming much more streamlined and efficient.

For those making money in the Office Equipment Channel, it is becoming clear that our industry is being impacted as well.  The days of people having to print everything in order to get work done are under pressure. The culprit? Digitization of workflows.  If we ignore the changes in how people are getting work done on a daily basis we stand to do a lot of damage to our bottom line.

In a recent study by Print Audit, pages per user continue to decline rapidly. 2015, 2016 and 2017 all saw declines.  People are still working, so where are these pages going? They are still being produced just in purely digital domains.  Here are 3 ways this is happening:

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Invoices

Now paper free

Digital workflows: Companies are making their invoicing processes entirely paper-free.  Do a google search on “Invoice Software” or “Cloud Invoicing” and you’ll find no shortage of providers who are doing their best to accelerate this new paper-free invoicing reality.  Any process that requires paper moving from one department to another or from one company to another is at risk of being completely disrupted.

Document management:  If you still keep all of your documents stored locally on your hard drive you are becoming a minority.  Google Drive, Amazon and Microsoft Azure are the three biggest threats to paper today. “The Cloud” is no longer a dirty word, nobody is scared of it anymore and people are moving and sharing documents virtually with no reason to print them.  Attachments in emails are a thing of the past as well! Why use valuable bandwidth to share a document when you do it via a share hyperlink?

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Digital Collaboration:  Video conferencing via Skype and Google Hangouts, document creation via teams through SharePoint and Google Drive, Task and team collaboration through ASANA, to name a few.  I remember when the “Inter-office Envelope” was passed around to share documents and allow for team editing. Anybody under 30 will have no idea what I’m talking about. You’re lucky, believe me. ;)

Each of the above areas are advancing and being adopted at a speed beyond anybody’s wildest imaginings.  As each of them continue to find ways to make work easier, more and more pages disappear. The more pages that disappear, the less money we make.  The value of paper also becomes less. Monochrome pages for 7/10ths of a cent and color at 5 cents per page and falling every year. Digitization of workflows is already impacting our industry and it’s only going to get worse.  At DOCassess we can’t afford to ignore this reality either and that’s why we’ve created the business-level assessment.  It’s been designed to help you get right to the core of how business processes and digital initiatives are transforming at your customers places of businesses.

It doesn’t have to be doom and gloom.  All an office equipment dealer needs to do is start adding digital workflow solutions to their portfolios and start making money on the new ways that people are working.  Simple, right? Ha! I know, this is a lot more difficult that just deciding to do it. But what other choice do you have? It’s either get with the times and modernize how you help your customers or get out of the business.  The third option is to just sit back and let your business die a death by a thousand cuts. So, the first option, to adopt and deliver digital workflow solutions although hard is really the best option for those looking to thrive and grow.

Have you already made the jump over the digital divide? Is your company making better than 50% of your revenue from digital workflows and other solution-based services? We’d love to hear your own stories and thoughts!

 

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