How To Achieve A Paperless Office


The challenge with eliminating paperwork is two-fold. A) Most companies have found it difficult to assess the cost savings that can be recouped. B) The technology for automating paperwork is not obvious to most and often implemented poorly.
The solution to going paperless is three steps:

  1. Recognize your cost savings and revenue gains from eliminating paper. Without the right incentive, no organization will choose to evolve.
  2. Look for systems that can eliminate the paper or reduce the need for paper in the first place (e.g. customer relationship management – CRM, human resource systems, etc).
  3. Partner with a company who can provide the infrastructure, technology and service to deliver on the promise of a paperless office.

As you approach implementing a plan to go paperless consider the methodologies and technologies discussed below.


Would you agree that if going paperless were easy everyone would have already done it? The tools and methods have been around for years but few people have built the expertise in using these tools and methods. More importantly, few companies have the resources to attempt automation with their own resources. There are three main methods to going paperless.

Systemic Approach

Any system that fully automates a process and displaces the paper originally used will take you paperless for that specific process. To ensure you remain fully paperless, also seek to eliminate the need to print documents that are output by the new system.

Forms Platform Approach

If your process requires print-perfect documents (even if you are not going to print them) then the best method for automating forms is to use a platform technology that integrates the data to and from your system with the forms in use. This approach is the most effective and easy to maintain when multiple documents need to be automated.

Forms Programming Approach

If you only have one form to automate, you can implement form-level programs that will make the form itself intelligent and fully-integrated with your system. This approach is the most costly to build and maintain if multiple forms must be integrated with your system.


The best thing to happen to paper is the Adobe® PDF standard. PDF, which stands for Portable Document Format, has become the de-facto standard for displaying documents that display and print the same on virtually every computer. Since the early 1990's Adobe has evangelized the Adobe Reader product to ensure that the majority of computers have a PDF-reader on it. As a standard, PDF enables companies to secure their documents and enable features such as interactivity, form fields for data capture, dynamic links to external systems and digital signatures (plus many more features).
Leveraging PDF to display the documents, ETI has built the industry standard for how data moves to and from the PDF document, resulting in a platform for automation. The Quik! Field Definition allows virtually any system to communicate with a PDF form for the purpose of sending data to, receiving data from and managing a process that traditionally relies upon paper forms.
Quik! is the only SaaS (Software as a Service) model that enables companies to use an existing and hosted platform technology to go paperless. The Quik! service includes building and maintaining the documents, delivering the documents in real-time, enabling process-driven rules and delivery of the digitally signed and completed document.
The only other means to go paperless with paper-based forms and applications is to purchase PDF-manipulation tools and build a custom solution. While definitely possible, the cost of building a custom system is typically too expensive to justify with the savings that result from the paperless system (which is why the world still runs on paper).

For help regarding Quik! Forms and the Quik! API
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