Infographic: The paperless office remains elusive

Survey finds 42 percent still use a fax
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We have been hearing about the idea of a paperless office since the 1970s, but a new survey of 511 American workers found that we are in fact still a long way away from achieving that goal.

It's worth noting that the survey was conducted by Nitro, makers of Nitro PDF software. Nitro is a company that wants you to stop using paper and use their software to distribute documents as PDFs. While the self-serving nature of the survey is clear, the results are still interesting nonetheless.

Consider for example that a full third of respondents said they didn't want to go paperless because basically it's not a priority. Perhaps it's not surprising then that 41.9 percent of respondents reported reading paper documents all the time, or another 28.8 percent relied on paper documents at least some of the time. Only one percent claimed they never worked from hard copies.

Meanwhile, 42.3 percent reported sending faxes most of the time or always. 

I hardly ever print hard copies anymore, so I'm in the minority. I only recently gave up faxing, and it took a concerted effort on my part to do that. I had to find some scanning software compatible with my scanner (part of my HP J4680 All in one printer), then I had to figure out how to make the scanner work. It turns out, I need to disconnect the printer from my network and connect it directly to my computer. When that's done, I scan the documents, save them to Dropbox, then email the attachment to the recipient. 

It's slow, but I've committed to the awkward workflow because it beats using 1960s technology for the job (which is also slow, frequently jams or drops in the middle of a call).

The Infographic below illustrates some of the other key findings in the survey:

For more information:
- see the Nitro press release

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