“I still like the pen and paper feel, so how can I be paperless?”

When you’re answering a phone call, particularly if it’s a client, is your first instinct to pick up a pen?

It is for most of us!

And that’s one of the main reasons people think going paperless isn’t the right path for them.

But there are paperless options, and we’ll have a look at three of them right now…

1. Rocketbook.

So this isn’t 100% paperless, as it’s essentially a notebook with laminated pages. But those pages wipe clean and can potentially be reused an unlimited number of times. (I’ve had mine for about 15 months and it’s still going strong after lots of use.)

Each page has a QR code and seven icons, each of which can be assigned to a different destination for you to send the images once they’ve been uploaded. So you could have destinations set up to save images into a specific Dropbox or Google Drive folder, as well as sending them directly into Trello, Slack or Evernote.

The notebook is used alongside a smartphone app, where you snap an image of the page and it’s whisked off to its chosen destination. (Which you pick by simply drawing an X through the relevant icon.)

It has its down sides – it needs to be written on with Pilot Frixion pens, which are plastic (although refillable…but with plastic cartridges) and don’t hold a huge amount of ink, so there’s still some single-use plastic to consider, as well as having to remember to keep a decent supply of refills in stock.

If you do decide to go down this route, look up your local Terracycle scheme here, where you’ll be able to drop off your used pens for recycling.

2. ReMarkable

This is a tablet that’s been specifically designed for capturing hand-written notes. The display looks and feels like paper, giving you an experience that feels very much like using the “real thing”. All your notes are converted to PDF and synced to the Cloud, where you can organise them however you want to. And it converts your handwriting into text, so you can turn your rough outline into a document or social media post without the need for typing.

At £399 for the latest model, plus at least £49 for the pen, there’s a bit of a financial investment for this. But I know people who are completely in love with theirs, so if you’re a regular note-taker, it will most likely pay for itself.

3. Your Tablet

If, like me, you don’t want to add another gadget to your collection, your existing tablet may do the job for you.

Using an iPad and stylus, along with the Goodnotes app, you get a similar experience to a ReMarkable. Obviously it’s not quite as slick as using the custom-designed tablet, but it does the job pretty well. With the iPad screen, it doesn’t feel quite as authentically “pen and paper”, although there is the option of adding a Paperlike screen protector. That basically does what it says – it adds more of a matt feel to the tablet screen, making it feel more like paper.

Goodnotes only works on Apple products, but if you’re an Android user, there are plenty alternatives such as MetaMoJi Note.

So you can ditch the paper and still keep scribbling away!

If you’d like more information on switching to paperless and automating your admin and bookkeeping, get in touch here or follow me on LinkedIn or Facebook.

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