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The Real Cost of Paper

Papers CostsMake the break with paper. It is costing you time, money and energy.

Are you one of those people who is clinging to the archaic tradition of leaving a literal paper trail behind? With all the technological advances in document scanning services these days, there is really no good reason for leaving such a trail. In fact, there are a number of reasons for ditching this habit.

Did you know that your habit of holding on to paper is actually costing you money, year after year? Unlike the one time cost of, say a simple USB device, paper is the bad habit that costs you money as well as time without being obvious about it.

Time: Using and maintaining paper takes a great deal of time. Each time you must find, re-file a piece of paper, you are using up valuable time that can be used for other purposes. On average, about ten minutes per paper is used.

Brain cells: No one likes to admit it but paper is easily lost in the shuffle of life and files. In fact, research has shown that about one in every 20 pieces of paper is lost while about three percent is misfiled. Given the amount of paper that is often involved, this is not surprising.

Exercise: Is this an advantage or disadvantage? You be the judge of this one. An office worker, on average, makes more than 50 trips each week to the printer, copier and fax machine. Depending on where your office machines are located, you could develop this into an exercise routine, if they are across the building, or a stretching routine, if they are next to your desk.

Money: You might not think about the cost of using paper beyond complaining about the cost of the printer ink that your printer seems to go through. For every inch of paper that you do use, though, you spend about $11. In order to store those papers in a five drawer filing cabinet, it will cost you an average of about $880 in maintenance costs per year.