What You Need to Know About Enterprise Content Management – Choosing the Right Solution
Good Enterprise Content Management (ECM) solutions can bring a return on investment (ROI) after seeing value within one department. The BEST solutions, however, bring that same ROI after the initial implementation within a single department, and then also have the ability to expand and be leveraged throughout your entire organization. It is important that when choosing an ECM solution, you think past both the costs and benefits of your initial project work and think further ahead to decide whether or not you can utilize your ECM system in other departments of your organization. More importantly, your ECM solution provider should be working with you to see when value exists elsewhere as well.
When choosing an ECM solution, ensure that functionalities of the software system are tailored to each department you are looking to implement it and that your document management system continues to be an enterprise-level investment. While each individual department will have unique needs and solutions, ECM software has evolved where you should only need to leverage one system across your entire enterprise.
Which Departments Benefit from an ECM Solution?
Accounting & Finance: ECM solutions are often implemented in accounting and finance departments first, as the impact that ECM can make in these areas often brings about the fastest ROI. ECM systems can:
- Maximize the benefits achieved by fast, efficient, and precise invoice processing in your accounts payable department
- Give you a linear approach to purchase requisitions and information handled by your procurement and purchasing team
- Streamline the process of managing information and documents associated with your AP vendors
- Allow you the visibility into what’s coming in and going out in real-time within your accounts receivable departments
Audit & Compliance: It is important that your ECM solution can help you comply with government and industry regulations by giving you visibility into the documentation of critical business processes and procedures. Paper-based processes in these areas usually cause difficulty in complying with local, state, federal, and non-governmental agencies, time and energy spent searching for documentation to prepare for audits, and a crippling inability to quickly find the most recent version and share required documentation when needed. Ensure that your enterprise document management system gives you the ability to manage documents electronically in a secure repository. You can then manage critical documentation and govern risk across your entire enterprise, speeding compliance and audit processes, while eliminating manual errors.
Case Management: Case Management solutions provide your employees with a 360-degree view of all case-related information, including data records, documents, forms, and history, and delivers it in the context of their specific roles. You can log phone calls, add updates, share insights, delegate tasks, schedule events, and ensure smooth hand-offs as cases flow toward desired outcomes. With all the information related to a case—notes, observations, data, email, and more—managed in one application, nothing is lost. Relevant information is instantly available to those who need it for the duration of the case, and you have the audit history to show for it. By choosing a solution that can combine capabilities from enterprise content management, business process management, and customer relationship management, you can ensure that your organization will have a system that delivers rich functionality for all of your needs.
Contract Management & Legal: An ECM solution used in contract management and legal can ensure that you are securely storing contracts while providing easy access to those who need it. Once these documents are in your system, all alterations or actions taken on a contract are tracked and recorded providing you with a full history of what was changed, when, and by whom. You also are granted the ability to electronically route completed contracts through the proper approvals automatically, giving the appropriate approver the use of a digital signature to execute the contract. This will increase visibility into the contract process, allowing you to instantly see the status of contracts, pinpointing bottlenecks and improving cycle times.
Human Resources: There are numerous areas within Human Resources that can benefit from an ECM solution. With an ECM solution in place, you can provide staff with a single secure electronic location to store all employee files, give them visibility into onboarding needs and processes, enable staff to automate the management of necessary activities for departing employees, validate that each staff member has read current policies and procedures to support compliance efforts, and capture, store, and route applicant files so staff can focus on finding the best candidates in recruiting efforts.
Learn more about the success of a Naviant client who was able to implement an ECM solution into numerous departments and obtaining a faster ROI.