3 tips on shutting down snail mail

Monday, July 21, 2014

Cleaning around the office can be made more difficult the day the snail mail arrives. The issue with paper is not only that it is expensive, or even that using too much of it can be harmful to the environment. One of the most bothersome things about paper is that it takes up space and makes offices seem as though they had recently been hit by a tornado.

While getting rid of paper is important in order to create a more efficient business, keeping the clutter out of the office is just as essential to saving money. This means that you will have to find ways to prevent paper from piling up. There are several simple methods that can be used at the office in order to ensure that paper documents stop coming into the office, including:

1. Identify all of the sources, and cut them off
The first thing to do in order to eliminate the penetration of paper in your office space is to find out where document streams are coming from, and cut them off. There are a number of ways in which files can stack up around the office. Mail, magazines, catalogues, receipts or newspapers could be making their way into your office weekly, or even daily, according to HGTV. All of these can be cut off, which would eliminate a significant portion of the paper that makes its way to your business.

2. Request electronic statements
One likely source of paper clutter is statements. Whether they be from the bank, from the utilities company or elsewhere, it is probably simple to get rid of them, and definitely a great way to eliminate the paper mess. According to ABE Federal Credit Union e-statements hold a number of advantages over their physical counterparts. One especially important benefit is that e-statements are faster –  in the case of those who use ABE banking, two to three days faster. This means you have more time to respond quickly and appropriately to bank statements or utility bills – a good way to avoid trouble.

Other things to consider when switching over to e-statements are the fact that you can likely save them to your computer, they conserve energy and save trees and reduce greenhouse emissions from deliveries.

3. Make junk mail a thing of the past
While the chance to get rid of even a portion of your junk mail may seem like nothing more than a dream, it is actually very much a reality. According to the Consumer Protection Division of the Office of the Attorney General, it is possible to eliminate junk mail, although it will initially take some work. Junk mail is sent by companies seeking to promote a product through direct marketing campaigns. Often they will capture a name and address through initial interactions. There are a few ways you can end this bothersome stream of clutter.

First is through the Direct Marketing Association. If you register for their Mail Preference Service – which must be redone every three years –  you should see a reduction in the volume of mail you receive within three months. Also, you can contact the irksome company directly and request an opt-out from their mailing service. When contacting the business, make sure you are removed from it's mailing list and ask that your contact information not be shared.

You can get rid of all the paper in the office, that doesn't mean it will stop coming in unless you take preventative efforts. Try these three in order to make a notable dent in the paper bedlam strewn about.