Reducing paper


The MD at the company I work for would like us to reduce the amount of paper we produce and subsequently have to store in accounts.

I can see some immediate changes we can make, in simply saving things to PDF and not printing, but I was hoping for some advice on how to make further changes.

The main issues are -
We currently print non purchase invoices for signature on the hard copy - this is then considered authorised. What's the easiest way of adding signature (and other notes) to a PDF file? Are we going to need a system to manage these invoices to make sure non get missed / filed into the wrong place, or should we be able to use a simple file directory / structure to manage it?

The biggest paper use is for purchase invoices, currently we receive the delivery note from the supplier with the goods, use our MPR system to generate a Goods Received Note, and print it, and also print the invoice which come through primarily via email. The GRN and invoice can easily be saved electronically, the main issue I foresee is with matching the GRN to the invoice. This takes place outside of the accounts department so we will need to see an whole company shift towards paperless, but I generally feel that it is much easier to lay out pieces of paper to match them than it is to try and do it on the screen by opening several files. If they can be matched it is then a case of combining the files together, to then be processed by accounts.

I am open to changes, and it is obviously important to be considerate of our paper usage, but I have concerns of creating extra work and faff to get things done electronically, there are probably some really simple solutions, so any experiences anyone can share would be gratefully received.

Many thanks


  • hellsb19
    hellsb19 AAT Student Posts: 2
    Is anyone able to offer any tips please?
  • MarieNoelle
    MarieNoelle Trusted Regular Hampshire/Surrey borderModerator, MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 1,433
    Hi Helen
    For adding signature on PDF for authorisation have a look at Adobe sign.
    Sorry can't help with your other query, maybe the whole process would need to be looked at?
  • CSan89
    CSan89 MAAT Posts: 207
    I agree with @MarieNoelle , you would need to work out the whole process (flowchart?) and then work out how to make the whole process paperless. This should highlight where the issue will be and what systems or processes may need to be changed (an example would be the warehouse worker having pda/tablet to process goods coming in).

    Depending on the size of the company, it could be a few easy steps to get it done or a complete overhaul of the whole process.
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