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What to do with my existing paper notes?

Tips on the best way to transition your paper files and notes into the cloud.

We've helped thousands of people and organisations transition from paper to the cloud. Through this engagement with our community, we have learned about the different approaches organisations have taken and the processes they've used on their journey going paperless. Below are the three most common approaches organisations have used to deal with their existing paper notes.

Please note: Notud has a feature for attaching various types of digital files eg. PDF, scan etc to a contact. Here is more information on how to add an attachment to a contact in Notud. 

Paper to digital

1. Digitise new notes (or ‘line in the sand’)

The simplest way to reconcile your existing paper files is to use Notud for new notes with active and new clients, while leaving your paper notes as-is for easy reference as you go. Some organisations draw a line in the sand with their old paper notes and only take digital notes moving forward. This allows users to refer to previous paper notes as needed without needing to scan and digitise these paper notes. This is working in parallel with your current note taking system for reference and using Notud to take new notes. This option is suitable for smaller organisations or those that might not have the administration staff to support the process involved in immediately digitising paper notes. Once you are comfortable with your active clients on Notud, you can make the choice to digitise their paper notes as needed. 

2. Digitise new notes and scan as needed (or the ‘middle ground’)

This approach has been favoured by medium size organisations as it allows them to make a transition to the cloud with only a few workflow adjustments. Administration staff scan and upload past histories or previous notes as their client base interact with your team over a period of time. If a client or contact creates an appointment, the administration staff can pull their previous paper notes to scan and upload to Notud. This allows the current and active client records to be available in Notud, while minimising the overhead on administration staff. Once the majority of your active client database is in the cloud, you can make the choice to digitise your inactive clients as needed. 

3. Digitise all paper notes (or ‘all in’)

Digitise all your paper notes and upload to the attachments section. Organisations bulk scan and upload all their existing paper notes. The usual approach is to complete this alphabetically. This has the benefit of all notes in one system. This process can take longer as notes are manually scanned and attached, but results in your organisation being fully electronic with your existing paper notes. Some organisations have used document scanning services to digitise their paper notes for a cost.


Notud lets you go electronic in any way that you choose. You can scan none, some or all of your existing paper notes – it’s up to you. And you don’t have to decide immediately – just get started with what makes sense initially, take all your new notes in Notud, and you can gradually work out which method of handling your existing paper notes suits you as you go. Please reach out to us if you need any advice or have any questions.