The Perils of Paper

perils of paper

The benefits of paperless (and the perils of paper) are starkly illustrated when you consider the impact that paper has on the operations of the average business. Here are some ‘fun’ (and ugly) facts from the USA.

  • On average, the labor cost to file one document is $20.
  • Between two percent and five percent of an organization’s files are lost or misfiled on any given day.
  • Companies, on average, spend $120 in labor to find one misfiled document.
  • One out of every 20 documents is lost.
  • Approximately 25 hours are spent recreating each lost document.
  • Approximately 10-12 percent of documents are not found on the first attempt.
  • 400 is the number of hours per year the average employee spends searching for documents.
  • More than 70 percent of today’s businesses would fail within three weeks if they suffered a catastrophic loss of paper based records due to fire or flood.
  • It takes an average of 10 minutes per paper document to retrieve, copy, and re-file.
  • The average document is copied 19 times.
  • The average worker makes 61 trips to the fax machine, copier and printer.
  • 60 percent of employee time is spent working with documents.
  • 90 percent of a business’s information is in documents
  • Each four-drawer file cabinet holds an average of 10-12,000 documents, takes up nine square feet of floor space and costs $1500 per year.

Sources: Gartner Group, AIIM, US Dept of Labor, Imaging Magazine

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