- 21 Aug 2023
- 2 Minutes to read
Document Management won't happen on its own
- Updated on 21 Aug 2023
- 2 Minutes to read
Many companies and government agencies have moved to a paperless environment, which is excellent. But having a document in an electronic format doesn't necessarily mean it is better than when it was on paper.
Here are some tips for making sure the efforts of moving to a paperless office pay off.
- Procedures and Guidelines: In the paper world, the file cabinets have some sense of order - alphabetical, chronological folder names. But, in the electronic world, if there is no structured file naming structure or directory structures, you may have to resort to a broad search and struggle to get what you need when needed.
- Document versions: How will you know if what you find is the latest version of a document? Saving electronic documents is easy now, but that also creates problems. Invest in a document management/records management solution that has version control. Or set up strict guidelines for how electronic files get saved and who has access.
- Document Conversion: If you undertake a document conversion project, ensure the scope of work includes rotating all pages and removing blank pages. And make sure there are file naming and metadata requirements.
- Engage End-users: Departments have different needs. Meet with your end users to build the best environment for them versus trying to push out a company-wide or agency-wide solution/process.
- Training: It doesn't matter if you invest in a software application or save files to drives; with training, your document repository will retain its value and usefulness.
If you do decide to invest in a document or records management solution, here are some of my recommended items to include on your vendor questionnaire checklist.
- Searching and retrieval - How easy is the software to use for basic search and retrieval? Does IT have to install software for each user? How is the software licensed? For example, do they have basic user and power user options?
- Document Capture - what tools are there for scanning and importing? Are these tools included with the purchase or extra?
- Design and configuration - how complicated is the system to set up? Will it require months of professional services from the software vendor or their reseller to get the solution live?
- Cloud or On-premise - What is the pricing model? (Most solutions offer subscription-only pricing). What is the process for getting your data if you discontinue usage?
- Ongoing support - Software support can walk a thin line, especially in the document management world. You may call for help but be told this falls out of the break/fix annual support you pay. Your request for help gets delayed as you get transferred to the professional services group.
I have worked with many solutions over the years. If you want to reach out for my feedback on the following solutions, feel free to do so.
- PSICapture (now Kofax)
- Hyland OnBase
Thank you for taking the time to read.