For every organisation, efficiently managing documents and data is crucial. So, when assessing the most effective Document Management Solution to use, there is a range of key features and capabilities to consider. We have put together a 7-point checklist to help you identify the solution that best suits your business.
Transitioning from a paper-based, hardcopy system to a digital one requires some careful planning, of course, with important regulations to consider. Not least amongst them is GDPR, which is designed to ensure the highest levels of data protection. But, with the right Document Management Solution, costs can be reduced and productivity increased, making the effort more than worthwhile.
So, here are 7 of the most significant considerations that you should look to check when zeroing in on the right document management system to adopt.
Our 7-Point Checklist
Collaboration is critical if a project team or departmental team is to maximize its efficiency. With a Document Management system, collaboration can become all that smoother because documents can be viewed from anywhere and shared between colleagues. It’s a matter of functionality between multiple devices – be they smartphones, laptops, tablets. Access is, of course, controlled and auditable as per the customer’s requirement.
The most effective Document Management Solution will be effective in both cost and time. With documents digitised and stored in the Cloud, the costs normally associated with hard-copy document management and storage are removed. No capital expenditure is required as there’s no need to set up any internal servers or any kind of internal infrastructure. Furthermore, cloud-based DM solutions only need a browser interface to access the technology.
Data privacy remains a hot term in data storage, so it is essential that your chosen Document Management Solution restricts access and permissions to the documents and data you have stored. An automated DM solution will have inbuilt customisable access restrictions, ensuring only those who should have access to sensitive material will be permitted to access that material.
Most national data privacy legislation has specified minimum retention periods for documents and other forms of data. It depends on the type of information (workplace accidents 10 years, tax records 6 years, parental leave 8 years etc) but failure to have the necessary documents can result in serious legal consequences. Interestingly, Europe’s own GDPR does not. Instead, it states that data should be retained ‘for no longer than is necessary for the purposes for which it was processed’. But whether it is national or EU legislation, keeping on top of retention periods so as to know when to discard specific documents is a key part of an efficient Document Management Solution.
File Sharing is a key component in the modern working model. But the very act of sharing documents and data brings with it a security risk, so any automated Document Management Solution you chose must be able to guarantee documents will only be shared with who they should be. Emailing is not secure enough, so an alternative is necessary. Document management systems that include a secure, access-controlled Cloud-based portal is one such alternative.
For every organisation, auditing is critical. So it stands to reason that is should be a critical part of an effective Document Management Solution. Every action within the system has to be tracked to ensure audit compliance. An efficient automated document management system must provide accurate audit trail records, allowing you to demonstrate to auditors full compliance with strict regulations.
Unmanaged information from general emails, Excel spreadsheets and word documents might not seem important. But over weeks and months, this work done by employees’ own devices can build into a considerable amount of unstructured data. Being able to manage this data is important. It ensures the most up-to-date version of a document is to the fore – and everyone is working on the same page, so the speak.
If you would like to talk to a Kefron’s team member about our Document Management Solutions, click here.