When you\u2019re embarking on a new business venture, paperwork has a tendency to pile up quickly. Going paperless will not only keep your files organized (and even searchable, depending on what software you use), but also frees up office storage space and even saves trees. Here are a few tips to kick things off:\n1. Purchase a document scanner\nIf you plan to be paperless from the beginning and want to keep things that way, investing in a quality scanner should be your first step. You\u2019ll be digitizing documents every step of the way as you get your business off the ground, so this is one thing you don\u2019t want to skimp on. Ideally your important documents will be just a click away, rather than buried under a box in the corner of your home office. Two highly reviewed options are Neat and the Fujitsu Scan Snap.\nFor on-the-go users, there are plenty of phone and tablet options to choose from as well. Check out highly reviewed CamScanner or Genius Scan, both available for Android and iOS. Scannable is another great option- especially for Evernote users.\n2. Make the cloud work for you\nIf you\u2019re scanning and tossing all your hard copies, you don\u2019t want to make the mistake of solely trusting your computer to keep them secure. Since there\u2019s always a risk of loss or damage to back-up drives, it might be worth looking into the cloud when it comes to your most important files. Cloud services like Dropbox\u00a0and Box.com\u00a0are extremely flexible and offer business plans for scalability. Another option is\u00a0Evernote, which\u00a0integrates note taking with file management and is very popular among paperless experts. Finally, even if you use these other cloud services, creating a second backup using a service like iDrive or Carbonite will ensure that your setup is disaster-proof.\nIf you\u2019re worried about security, most cloud services offer basic encryption and\/or compatibility with more sophisticated third-party options. Keep in mind that the cloud offers an added bonus of accessibility \u2014 you\u2019ll now be able to access your documents remotely, via phone or laptop, rather than bemoaning the fact that you left a crucial document at the office.\n3. Set up a virtual mailroom\nThis tip gives you a professional business address and also saves you hours of time spent monotonously sorting through mail. A virtual mailroom service will scan every envelope you receive at said address and then provide several options: open & scan, shred, forward, check deposit or bill-pay. Popular services include Traveling Mailbox and Earth Class Mail.\n4. Hire a third party to act as your registered agent\nRegistered agents often overlap with virtual mailroom services, and are especially important for startups lacking a physical office. Your third-party agent is responsible for storing organizational files, as well as receiving and scanning official mail on your company\u2019s behalf. As a result, you benefit from off-site file storage and a little help with the document digitization process.\n5. Cut down on business junk mail altogether\nIt\u2019s pretty safe to say that junk mail is simultaneously one of the biggest frustrations and paper-wasters of the 21st century. If you\u2019re finally fed up, a time-saving app like PaperKarma can prove useful. Simply take a picture of the offending mail and the company will act on your behalf, requesting that the sender remove your name from their mailing list.\n6. Find an online fax service that meets your needs\nThere\u2019s a paperless way to complete most office tasks at this point, and faxing is now on that list. If you have clients or vendors with fax machines, there are still ways to keep those interactions paper-free. Consider a pay-as-you-go service like GreenFax to start out, or a subscription service such as eFax\u00a0or Nextiva if you know you\u2019ll be faxing frequently. As always, there are mobile options to supplement your faxing needs\u2014take a look at Breezy Print and Fax and JotNot Fax, available for Android and iOS. If you deal with the medical industry here is a list of HIPAA compliant fax services.\u00a0(Disclosure: my company owns FindAFax.com, the site on which this list resides).\n7. Set up e-billing for all applicable services\nIn this day and age, most services offer an email-only billing option. E-billing cuts down the time spent scanning mailed documents, reduces paper waste, and simplifies the bill-pay process. Conversely, if your own company\u2019s services include invoicing, use electronic options such as PayPal or FreshBooks rather than sending a physical slip.\n8. Sign documents electronically\nGone are the days of printing a document only to sign, scan and send. The electronic signature method saves time and paper, with popular services including\u00a0Adobe Sign to DocuSign. Additional features may include form templates, document archiving and integration with other cloud services.\nMany established companies have their work cut out for them when it comes to making the transition (or assessing whether such an extreme change is even possible). If you\u2019re just getting started with your business, though, you\u2019re in luck. Choosing to go paperless now will save a lot of time, hassle, file cabinet costs, trees and even real estate in the long run.