To paper or not to paper . . .

I have a love-hate relationship with paper. I am an avid reader and while I own an e-reader I am too cheap to buy books regularly for download. So I frequent my Bridgenorth library and while borrowing a book uses less paper than purchasing it, well, it still promotes the use of paper. I love the feel of a book in my hands . . . physically turning a page instead of swiping or clicking. When I studied for my CPA exams, I found I retained information better if it was a printed copy rather than a computer document. I have a theory that your brain remembers things better when it can associate the information with a spot on the page . . . . “it was just below that diagram on the left side at the top . . . I can picture it”. There is nothing medical or scientific about that . . . just a hunch based on how my brain works.

That being said, paper stresses me out. When my inbox is overflowing and my purse is cluttered with receipts I start to feel a little anxious. I worry about misplaced documents . . . unpaid bills . . . the house looks messier . . . now I have to make multiple little decisions: file it, shred it, recycle it . . . scratch that . . . maybe I should just have a glass of wine!

So I googled going paperless . . . and found out a whole bunch of cool things about how it helps the environment. Things like more trees = more oxygen; less ink and toner = reducing the use of fossil fuels and chemicals harmful to the environment; less delivery trucks = less fuel usage and all the good things related to that.

It can also mean a more efficient office with more physical storage space . . . and less stuff lying around which means less stress for me.

So we are committing to an ongoing initiative in our office to reduce paper usage. We are committed to printing less and storing more documents either on our computers or in the cloud.

Safe and secure: while there are risks with storing documents on a computer hard drive or the cloud, there are also risks to paper documents from fire, flood, theft and loss due to human error (mis-filing). We have purchased storage on the cloud through Onvio which is a file storage and sharing system created by Thomson Reuters. We were impressed with not only the security of the system (documents are uploaded/downloaded through a Virtual Private Network) but the multiple backup servers they have in place. Thompson Reuters is a company that has been around for a long time and their main product is information.

How can you help?

  • By using our client portal to share documents with our office. We can store your tax return on the cloud so you have less in your physical filing cabinet. See our Client Portal.
  • By signing up to receive office correspondence (for example, year-end checklists and reminders, personal tax checklists, copy of your tax return, etc.) through email instead of snail mail. Contact us by email to let us know.
Marsha MacLean Professional Corporation