10 ways paperless meetings can benefit your organisation

Going paperless with a meeting management portal can save time and money as well as increase your organisation’s productivity and be better for the environment.

1. Greater document security

Replacing your existing method of distributing meeting documents, whether it be post or email, with a paperless meeting management solution will greatly increase your document security of meeting papers.

A meeting management portal offers a secure way to store and distribute meeting documents. All content published on these portals is password secured, usually with strong password policy management and two-factor authentication as an optional security extension. Plus, all transmission of content (between website and user) is encrypted by a digital security certificate.

In contrast, sending meeting papers via email is inherently insecure.

When an email is sent, its content (text and attachments) is kept on the sending and receiving mail servers. You have little or no control over what the IT staff with access to these servers, does with this content. 

Most email users also tend to be lazy with their security practices. Weak passwords used on other services, user account details left on insecure documents (eg an Excel spreadsheet on your PC) and passwords remembered via browser cookies or even post-it notes(!) are all typical behaviours.

Using email to distribute and discuss meeting papers encourages further insecure practices such as downloading files onto multiple devices (which may be insecure) and forwarding emails on to 3rd parties.

Post is an even a more insecure method, relying on humans to not leave documents lying around where other people can see them.

2. Easier document access

By publishing all your meeting documents online in one place with a meeting management portal, you provide meeting participants with universal access to documents. Anywhere, anytime. Meeting documents no longer get lost or not updated.

Plus, with a meeting management portal, users get browse and search tools to easily find the documents they are looking for. This eliminates the common problem of participants not being able to find meeting documents in their email account.

3. Increased collaboration

A good meeting management portal will provide collaboration tools where meeting participants can post and share comments on agenda items and documents. These tools increase collaboration between meeting participants because they enable participants to work together virtually, regardless of their location or time.

But without a meeting management portal collaboration between meeting participants would usually be limited to times where participants are all available to meet. In response to this limitation, a byproduct of is the use of inefficient and insecure tools such as email.

The end result here is usually less collaboration and more inefficiency.

4. Better decision making

Easier access to meeting documents and increased collaboration of participants between meetings will inevitably lead to better decision making on issues. 

Enabling more consideration of issues between meetings will provide more informed and efficient discussion of issues at meetings. This means better decisions can be arrived earlier at meetings.

5. Reduced administrative load

A meeting management portal will automate the distribution of meeting documents to participants. Once a meeting is published on a portal, participants can be automatically notified that documents for the meeting are available for viewing.

By removing the need for administrators to manually distribute documents to each participant for each meeting, the administrative load of your staff can be significantly reduced.

A typical scenario would be a meeting administrator spending only 3 hours per meeting organising and distributing meeting documents via a meeting management portal versus 12 hours via print and post.

6. Increased productivity

A meeting management portal will free up the time of meeting organisers and participants. This can then increase the productivity of your organisation.

Less time spent distributing and trying to find meeting documents means more time spent on higher-value work.

7. Reduced meeting costs

Switching to a meeting management portal from post can significantly reduce the distribution cost of meeting documents.

A typical scenario of 10 participants having 13 meetings per year with 8 meeting documents per meeting, can produce a cost saving of more than $4,700 per annum using a meeting management portal such as Sympose instead of post (see a cost analysis of this scenario).

8. Greater workplace flexibility

Having universal access to meeting documents and the ability to collaborate online, anywhere anytime, provides greater workplace flexibility for your meeting participants. Being also able to vote on meeting resolutions online furthers this workplace flexibility.

Paper-based meetings with no online collaboration or voting tools usually anchor participants to particular times and spaces, making their work less flexible

9. Reduced environmental footprint

By printing and posting less paper with a meeting management portal you can reduce your organisation’s environmental footprint. 

A meeting management portal means less consumption of paper, less use of electricity and less fuel burnt on delivering documents. All of which will benefit our environment.

10. More office space

A paperless meeting management solution can remove the need for storing meeting documents. This, over time, can provide your organisation with more office space.

Documents for one meeting may not take up much shelf space. But with one meeting a month over several years, archived meeting documents can consume a lot of valuable office space. 

Sympose delivers these benefits

Sympose is a paperless meeting management solution that delivers all of these benefits. To learn more about Sympose:

•    Explore features
•    View pricing
•    Request a demonstration or free trial

Last updated: 28 March 2020

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