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Office with shredded paper in a bin

Bob Martin, Sales Executive

Why On-Site Shredding Has The Advantage Over In-House Shredding

Document destruction is a critical way you can secure information within your office. We all have information floating around at work. Documents are left on desks, on copier trays, and in trash cans. Simply throwing away your documents brings problems in two ways:

  1. It could end up in the wrong hands, potentially bringing challenge to your business.
  2. Throwing away paper is bad for the environment.

Bring peace of mind to your office by either shredding in-house or on-site. If you’re having challenges deciding which route to take with your shredding, we’ve compared in-house shredding and on-site shredding for you.

What’s the difference between on-site shredding and in-house shredding?

When comparing the difference between on-site and in house shredding, it’s easy to see the convenience of shredding documents immediately is the largest benefit. However, a personal document shredder you can pick up at the store typically isn’t robust enough to keep up with the number of sensitive documents needing shredding.  On the surface they seem convenient and can fit underneath your desk. Unfortunately, with identity theft and business fraud increasing every year, proper document shredding is more important than it has ever been. On-site shredding with a shredding company is much more efficient, secure, and flexible. In addition, a shredding provider can grow with your company while hitting your recycling goals.

Disadvantages Of In-House Shredding


Personal shredders can become expensive if you use them a lot and they require frequent maintenance. Documents can easily become stuck, causing you to manually pick each piece out in hopes it will resolve the problem and begin working again.


Shredding takes time and effort that could be better used on other tasks. Most employees shred documents in bundles, rather than one at a time. This can result in employees stuck in front of a shredder for hours on end, instead of spending time on more strategic tasks. An option would be to pay an employee to be the designated “shredder.” Furthermore, this can add unnecessary cost to your payroll and will ultimately cost more than an on-site option.

Indecisive Behavior

If employees know they have to shred themselves, documents can sit on their desks for longer amounts of time. This opens your company up to security breaches. Shred or not shred, there should never be an option.

Non-Compliance Risk

If you shred in-house, where does the paper go? It doesn’t magically disappear into thin air, so where does it go?  On-site shredding companies are certified and can prove your sensitive information is being destroyed and recycled. There are several government regulations and shredding laws in place. In-house office shredders are not known to meet or exceed these regulations, nor are the people actually disposing the shredded pieces.

How does On-site Shredding Work?

When you partner with a company that’s certified and specializes in document destruction, your office will already feel more secure and eco-friendly. Locked office consoles will be strategically placed throughout your organization. Additionally, an on-site shredding company will come to your facility, collect the paper, shred it, and then take it away for recycling. There is no transit period where the paper is not secure. This is because specialized shred trucks are the physical shredders.  During the entire process, your paper is never directly handled. A wheeled cart is securely fastened to the chute of the shredding truck and automatically lifted inside the truck to shred your material into tiny pieces.  These are mixed with other shredded materials that cannot be reconstructed.  Lastly, you are presented with a Certificate of Destruction that ends the ownership of documents.

Benefits of On-Site Shredding

Routine Schedule

Bin pickups can be scheduled directly with your document shredding provider. They can work with your schedule and needs to ensure convenience, flexibility, and safety.

Increase Security

Everything is handled for you and nothing is missed. The locked shred bins are tamper proof and once documents, credit cards, invoices, etc go in – they can’t come out until the shredding company destroys it.


Because your bins are routinely picked up, you have a structured cost that’s predictable. This cost can be scaled up or down depending on your business needs. It also eliminates purchasing your own costly, personal desktop shredders. In addition, it relieves you of self-maintenance and labor hours.

Convenient & Environmentally Conscious

The shred team takes the destructed materials to a recycling center. It’s separated, de-inked, refined, and made into new paper products. This new paper will save thousands of trees from being cut down per year.

Meets or Exceeds Government Regulations

Most industries have compliancy regulations to meet. Some of the most common regulations that deal with sensitive information are FACTA (Fair And Accurate Credit Transaction Act), HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act), and DOD Compliance (Department of Defense Compliance). If you partner with a reputable company that is certified, they will ensure all regulations are met and provide you with an Official Certification of Destruction that confirms all privacy laws were followed.

While in-house shredding might seem convenient, it can cost time, money, and security in the long run.  Evaluating providers for secure document destruction is important. There are different types of services available through these companies. This includes scheduled routine service, one-time purges, and hard drive destruction. You owe your business, customers, and employees the luxury of maximum security. If you haven’t implemented a shred policy yet, now is the time to do so.

We’re always available to support your shredding needs. Applied Innovation experts are just a call, click, or visit away with offices in Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, and Tampa, Florida.

Get a Free Shred Quote