Once upon a time, not so long ago, paper was king in business. We used it to print documents, we used it in tonnes, and sadly, we wasted quite a lot of it. We may be more aware of deforestation now, and ‘Eco-friendly’ is certainly a prevalent buzzword in the 21st century, but how do you create a more sustainable workplace or business? How do you create documents without wasting time, money and energy? The answer may just lie in investing in tablets for the workplace.
Printing uses up time and energy, and to use the example of professional printers, it takes seven gallons of water to print an average book. However, digital publications use up only two cups of water. But since tablet use has become more widespread, a 2011 Morgan Stanley survey of 700 people found that an impressive 46% of respondents decreased their printing habits after starting to use a tablet.
When questioned, 79% of the survey’s respondents stated that the reduction in printing was the main benefit of owning a tablet. In addition, its been estimated that tablets are directly responsible for a 16% decrease in printing habits in the workplace, which has led to less paper being wasted in business and lowered costs for all involved.
In addition, there are numerous case studies from businesses around the world that have slashed their printing costs due to the use of tablets. For example, the Hampton Virginia City Council started using tablets to view meeting documents, instead of printing out documents, as they had done previously. This led to a saving of $18,000 on printing costs by the end of the first year, a figure that not only impressed the faculty, but also ensured that the use of tablets in university meetings would continue for the time being.
Much-needed time and energy are also saved by using a tablet. As one example, the University of Cincinnati uses tablets when conducting surveys, as this saves turnaround time on collecting results. What’s more, it also saves space, as papers and used surveys are no longer taking up much-needed space within the university’s archive.
While tablet adoption has undoubtedly grown in the business world, tablets have also grown increasingly popular in everyday life as well. For example, another survey has revealed that in 2010, just 4% of adults in the US owned a tablet, but just two years later, in 2012, that figure had grown massively to 25%; a full quarter of adults in the US now own a tablet.
With tablet use in the US and around the world rising fast, these devices are offering users a lot more than accessibility and ease of use. Economy and sustainability are increasingly on the agenda in our daily lives and it’s essential to monitor the effect our working practices have on the Earth’s forestry and water resources. What tablets have to offer is the chance to do our part to save the planet, by erasing the need for excess printed paper, one sheet at a time.