Going Paperless in Your ELICOS College

Embrace the Future: Going Paperless in Your ELICOS College

Going paperless is something that requires some time and effort initially, but once the systems are in place, embracing this approach will not only save your ELICOS college time and money but will also contribute to a greener, more sustainable environment.

Administrative Efficiency:

Going paperless can make administrative tasks effortless. Contacts, leave forms, and employee onboarding documents can all be transformed from a hardcopy format to a digital form. Tools like Adobe Acrobat Pro and Microsoft Forms (or Google Forms) enable managers to create fillable documents that can all be stored electronically, not only saving space but also saving time when it comes to the need to locate information about a particular staff member.

Environmentally Friendly:

Reducing the amount of paper being used is not only cost-effective; it is environmentally friendly; an area which is of particular importance in most ELICOS colleges in Australia.

Enhanced Accessibility:

Whether you are onsite or working remotely, digital documents and books make it easy to get work done wherever you are. Academic managers needn’t be on-site to complete tasks, and teachers can prepare for lessons off-campus, rather than being chained to a desk in a physical classroom or office. Furthermore, tools such as Google Drive and OneDrive, as well as other digital forms stored on a cloud-based system, lend themselves to a collaborative work environment.

Paperless Assessments:

ELICOS colleges have in the past done placement tests on-campus and have done progress tests on printouts. Placement tests can now be done prior to students arriving in the country or at the college, and yes, this does include the speaking component. Progress tests for General English, Cambridge, and IELTS can be transformed into digital tests using MS Forms or Google Forms, making marking quicker and easier for teachers. Students benefit from timely feedback as a result.

Employee Onboarding:

Onboarding employees needn’t be a long and arduous paper trail. Tax file number declarations and other necessary documents can be electronically signed using Acrobat Pro. The above simplifies and expedites the process as well as ensures the documents are completed accurately and securely.

Digital Attendance Records:

Attendance input can be an arduous task for both teachers and administrative staff. Why not leverage your student management system to kill two birds with one stone and leverage the teachers to record attendance electronically directly into your student management system? My student management system does not have this feature! No worries, just leverage Excel or Google Sheets and do away with paper rolls. Use checkboxes on a spreadsheet to automate the weekly totals. Automate, automate, automate.

Overcoming Resistance:

Start by training the Luddites of your ELICOS college – those who are not comfortable with technology and those who resist the implementation of a paperless ELICOS college. The reason for this is simple; if you can get the Luddites to ‘buy into’ the idea of paperless testing, for example, then the rest will be a breeze.


A stitch in time really does save nine when it comes to implementing a paperless system at your college. It is important to focus on the positives of leveraging digital technology both in the classroom and in the administrative area of ELICOS colleges. The most challenging thing is the implementation of change in an organization that is attached to using paper and filing cabinets; it is much easier if you are in charge of rebuilding a team or a startup. However, in both cases, it is important to celebrate the small wins and trust in the process despite any bumps along the way.