Identifying critical capabilities of an effective document management system is imperative for a successful business, no matter what its size, complexity or maturity. Here’s what to consider.
Do you find yourself asking these questions about document management?
Where is the document? Is this the latest version of the document? Has this document been approved? Has this document been circulated?
When you have to ask any of these questions you know only too well the associated costs and inefficiencies. When running your business all you want is to be able to find a document, when and where it is needed. A simple document requirement for Document Management surely?!
Does your business work efficiently while on the move?
Does your business provide accurate, timely information to your customer and instill confidence in your capabilities to the Customer? Can you provide proof of insurances, licences, qualifications and examples of previous work? Or when trying to submit a tender or quote are you able to find all the information you need?
If your laptop was stolen or the hard drive died would you still be able to manage your business without disruption? A lot of cloud based external hard drives portray themselves as a document management solution but really are just an external hard drive which is on the cloud.
Do you have full document storage and record control?
Does your business run smoothly, able to store and preserve, provide access, and organise your documents?
Can your employees access the right document from anywhere at any time? And, can your Customers get secure access when required to specific documents?
A true solution for a business will be able to provide a positive response to these and will incorporate functionality such as supersede, authorise, read understand and agree and version control.
Can you quickly and efficiently send jobs to workers?
Are you able to update your workers with new jobs and sign-off completed jobs?
It should be an integral component of an effective document management system to use technology such as tablets or smart phones to provide the correct documents when your workers are away from the office.
Managing Licence and training requirements
Managing the currency of your workers licensing and training can be a drain on your administrative resources. Simple functionality within your document management solution should allow you to define the requirements for different customers and work activities, then at a glance you can see your compliance against these requirements.
Are you confident that you only assign workers to a task they are trained, licensed and competent to undertake with all appropriate documentation? Does your document management system notify you of qualification expiry with an alert? These are the essential features that enable the smooth and effective running of a successful business, that reduce the administrative burden and potential for error created by a manual system.
Stop relying on your memory
Are the core requirements for your business embedded into your business systems? A document management system that would benefit your business would provide functionality to make sure core requirements of your business, like insurance, equipment servicing, contract renewals are never forgotten. Using the memory of individuals or ad-hoc systems will not provide you consistent results on which you can rely.
Your success relies on reliable and scalable business management based around document management. This foundation is the basis on which greatness can be built.
There are so many elements of a business that are undeniably more interesting but a fully integrated management system built with consideration to all of the above will ensure that your document management system is more than just a hard drive.
Contributed by Richard Chappell, Creative Director, Apps 101. Specialists in the design, development and deployment of Business Apps for SMEs through to Corporations of varying size, complexity and maturity.
Built by Apps101, Library 101 is the document management application that keeps all documentation on people, equipment and your workplace available at all times. Qualifications, licences, service reports and certificates on equipment, along with procedures and risk assessments, all at your fingertips.