How the education sector can benefit from going paperless

Arjit Bhargava– Arjit Bhargava, VP-Global Business Development, MSB Docs

The education sector is considered the backbone of any country, for it strives to make the future better for society as well as the economy. With Covid-19 the world came to a screeching halt and we witnessed the education sector rising up to the occasion and enabling learning effectively through remote mechanisms. Schools, colleges and other educational institutions took the digital route to maintain the status quo. However, much more can be achieved through the digital mode by the Indian education sector, which holds an important place in the global education industry.

If there’s one direction that the Indian education sector needs to head now is towards going paperless, i.e. replacing all paper-based processes with smart document solutions. The most immediate and significant benefit of going paperless would be establishing an effortless communication network among teachers, students and school or college administrations. The digitisation of documents provides all stakeholders easier and quicker access to large and different sets of data, including a massive bank of User Generated Content. This is crucial as we cannot rely on machine-generated content for education processes. Undoubtedly, the transfer of notes and other documents between students and teachers, and also among peers, would become fast and simple.

At the institutional level, the boons of smart document solution are endless. The educational institutions can streamline and improvise their admissions, enrolments, registrations and other similar operations. By going paperless, schools and colleges can carry out these paper-based processes in an agile and error-free manner. For instance, the institutions can leverage new-age tools like Web Forms for such purposes. Smart document solutions can result in saving costs and investing in lesser manpower.

Educational institutions undertake many paperwork every year to comply with various policies and legalities across multiple matters. Institutes with many branches and board members spread across the country also spend a massive amount of money transferring the papers to get signatures or approvals. Therefore, embracing paperless process and approvals will empower institutes to execute work swiftly and cost-effectively. It will also make the entire process of initiating and concluding the approval work hassle-free.

Schools and colleges often go for partnerships, participation or associations at different levels with varied entities. Executing communication, signing partnership deeds, etc online would make the process faster and secure. Similarly, digitisation of various agreements, NDAs, confidential documents, and more will limit people’s participation, giving more control to the institute in keeping these documents secure. The agreements and documents can be signed using Electronic, Digital or Hybrid signatures, and moreover, sealed with a tamper-proof system for added security.

Furthermore, many educational institutes have huge space dedicated to storing archived information on paper. Irrespective of a paper’s importance, it is well maintained to avoid any issues that may arise in the future. Digitising the archived documents will allow institutes to utilise their space for more productive work.

The road to document digitisation may not seem easy, but it is certainly worth it as well as cost-effective. By releasing the pressure of maintaining the “correct format” of documentations via automating it, education institutes can focus and flourish in imparting Education, making it more valuable for teachers and the students.

Also read: Why schools must prepare for a shift to online learning in 2021

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