Companies today have reduced their reliance on paper, but even as documents become digital files, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re securely and conveniently organized and managed. Unstructured, unsecured documentation will cost your organization time and money.
Enterprise content management (ECM) is a valuable solution that can help businesses organize and manage digitized documents to improve operational efficiency.
What is enterprise content management?
Enterprise content management is a general term used to describe the technology and strategy behind modernized document capture, access, and storage.
Organizations rely on a variety of documents and data types to function. Invoices, resumes, contracts, emails, research reports, slide presentations, spreadsheets, and more all need to be managed effectively. This means they’re right where you need them when you need them, so you can collaborate effectively with coworkers—and ECM makes it possible.
Why is ECM important for your organization?
ECM can help you improve your operations in a number of ways. Some of the most notable benefits include the ways ECM can:
- Streamline operations: ECM can serve a critical role in workflow automation as it helps to eliminate confusion and complexity that can otherwise lead to inefficient business processes.
- Reduce operating costs: Eliminating wasted time and effort also means reducing wasted costs. ECM software can also help you avoid costs related to mishaps like missing documents or security breaches.
- Improve customer service: The right ECM solution can also help you provide a more seamless customer service experience. For example, customers may be able to view the current status of requests and transactions. You should also be able to quickly call up the exact information you need to assist customers.
Which features should you look for in ECM software?
Enterprise content management software comes in a variety of forms, with a variety of features and options available. Take stock of your organization’s content management needs, and then keep an eye out for some or all of the following features when you’re shopping for the best fit for your company.
1. Digital Forms
Rather than continuing to scan in paper forms and manually enter information from them, why not digitize your forms from the start? The right ECM software can help you do that.
2. Secure Data Storage
Security should be a top priority for any organization. Especially if you’re storing sensitive information, you need an ECM solution that helps you keep files secure. Even within your organization, you should be able to allow different levels of access for various employees.
3. Tracking History
An audit trail log can help you monitor who has accessed documents and when and what changes the document has undergone throughout its lifecycle.
4. Built-In Workflow Analytics
A variety of issues can impact a company’s success with document workflow. Advanced ECM software can provide high-level analytics regarding the way documents are processed to reveal possible bottlenecks and room for improvement.
5. Software Integration
For an even more efficient and seamless experience with document management, you should see whether your ECM software integrates with other types of software your business relies on, such as Salesforce®, QuickBooks®, or Microsoft Dynamics™. Some ECM software will also work with your office multi-functional printer.
Half of all corporate data today is stored in the cloud. Especially as organizations adopt more flexible working arrangements, being able to access documents from anywhere with an internet connection is an important feature.
You want an ECM solution that will scale with your company. Having access to a variety of tools and configuration options can help you tailor your ECM software to your current needs.
Why implement ECM software through a document management partner?
You can purchase ECM software directly from the software creator. However, there are some advantages to adopting an ECM solution through a reseller of ECM software who can provide their services, as well. A company like CPI can come alongside your organization to offer a more comprehensive solution and add value to your ECM approach. For example, when you implement ECM software through a partner, you can receive the following perks.
The ECM software market was valued at $43.4 billion in 2020, and that value is projected to increase at a compound annual growth rate of 13.8 percent through 2026. Needless to say, the number of software solutions available to choose from can be overwhelming. Having a partner who understands what’s available and can endorse a specific product is a helpful way of knowing you’re choosing the right solution for you.
Personalized Customer Service and Advice
A trusted partner can also serve as a knowledgeable advisor. The customer service you receive from a document management company like CPI will likely be far more robust than the personalized attention you can expect from a software company.
Other Related Services
A document management company can also be a one-stop shop for a variety of solutions. In addition to implementing your ECM solution through the company, you may also be able to take advantage of other offerings from the same company, such as managed print and IT services.
Implementing new software can always feel a bit daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. A document management partner can help you throughout the process as you adopt your new ECM solution so you ensure you’re making the most of the technology.
Partner with CPI to start managing your company’s content effectively.
For a total solution for your company’s enterprise content management, trust CPI—an independent document management company that delivers a total solution. We can help your company manage and centralize documentation so you can cut costs while increasing production and operational efficiency.