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How Can Our Business Benefit From Enterprise Content Management (ECM)?

Your organization can expect effective results such as reduced costs, improved work efficiency, and enhanced security by implementing ECM. Learn more about Enterprise Content Management and why you should be using it.

What Is ECM?

“Enterprise Content Management” or “ECM” is a holistic approach to information management that uses sharing, utilization, and management of all information across departments within an organization. It’s designed for complete content life cycle management.

ECM is a strategy for maximizing how you use your content. It extends the concept of content management by creating timelines for each content item and using processes to create, approve, and distribute them. ECM content includes things like documents, graphics, emails, and videos.

ECM solutions offer strategies, methods, technologies, and tools for centrally storing, managing, and sharing all content (paper documents, digital documents, images, and audio files, etc.) in an organization. Furthermore, ECM realizes efficient integration and management of both unstructured information (e.g., paper documents) and structured information (e.g., data in the core system such as ERP) in an organization.

According to the Association for Intelligent Information Management:

“Enterprise Content Management is the systematic collection and organization of information that is to be used by a designated audience – business executives, customers, etc. Neither a single technology nor a methodology nor a process, it is a dynamic combination of strategies, methods, and tools used to capture, manage, store, preserve, and deliver information supporting key organizational processes through its entire lifecycle.

  • Capture: boils down to entering content into the system.
  • Manage: what you do next to it so that it can be found and used by the intended individual.
  • Storing: finding it an appropriate home in your infrastructure, be it a formal content management system or other information solution.
  • Preserve: refers to long-term care – archiving, if you will – the practice of protecting it for utilization purposes; however, far into the future, the organization needs it to be available.
  • Deliver: putting the information in the right people’s hands right when they need it to be there.

Why Do We Need To Use Enterprise Content Management?

You know that you need to manage your content to achieve your business goals, but you also must be able to access the version of a document quickly and easily. This requires processes that are focused on using content to make accurate decisions and appropriate actions. ECM helps you do this.

How Can Our Business Benefit From ECM?

In five key ways:

  1. You can reduce costs through decreased supply resources, storage space, supply resources, and postal requirements.
  2. You’ll benefit from more cost-effective and efficient document management and control.
  3. It ensures integrated compliance with government and industry regulations.
  4. You’ll benefit from increased security with functions that filter sensitive data masked with redaction features. This facilitates document-sharing without compromising an individual’s identity or other confidential data.
  5. You can reduce your IT resources by using Software-as-a-Service solutions.

How Does ECM Provide Business Value?

Many organizations face significant challenges when it comes to storing, managing, and accessing company information and content. ECM can solve these challenges.

Here are four examples to show you how your business gains value from Enterprise Content Management.

Example 1.

The Challenge: Several paper documents comprising a mixture of documents of different types slow down the work efficiency.

The Solution: Digital documents are centrally managed so that the relevant information can be readily retrieved as required by persons needing it.

Example 2. 

The Challenge: The loss of paper documents results in missed information and failure to process data.

The Solution: Digitization prevents lost paper documents, and an alert function reduces the frequency of failures in conducting documentation work and processing.

Example 3. 

The Challenge: Physical document exchanges accompanying the processes of circulation and approval are made complicated.

The Solution: Predefining a workflow best suited to each company’s approval process will preclude complicated exchanges of documents, thereby achieving more rapid document circulation and approval activities.

Example 4.

The Challenge: Concerns about security and data protection.

The Solution: Improving security by utilizing the ECM to set access rights for specific employees as well as record a log of who accessed the information and when.

ECM integrates seamlessly with existing core business systems to manage the flow of documents and information used, ensuring the challenges specific to the industry and department are solved.

Does ECM Work In Different Industries?

Yes. Here are some examples of industries that use ECM:

Finance: Improving the speed of various manual processes in the financial industry, which depend on paper documents, from loan composition systems to payment processing, by digitization and automation.

Healthcare: Integrating seamlessly with the medical information system, realizing fast and reliable information sharing such as electronic medical records among medical staff without problems.

Government: Improved administration services, and waste-less workflows can be attained by the digitization of various paper documents used by government organizations and integrating this with the core application used by every department and organization.

Does ECM Work In Various Departments?

Yes. These are examples of how you can use ECM in your various departments.

Sales: Promoting the efficiency of sales activity by digitally storing customer information, proposals, contracts, etc. in the latest and complete state and sharing it among designated employees.

Procurements: Increasing the efficiency of the procurement operation by automatic storage and management of various data related to purchasing, such as price information and a final contract in addition to the latest details of each supplier, in individual files per supplier.

Human Resources: Improving processing speed by simplifying the management of employee information. Documents can be found easily and retrieved in minutes by HR staff who have been given access authority.

Contract Management: Along with the digitization of contract documents and managed access control, contract management can be further improved by implementing optimized contract management, which will prevent contracts expiring through the use of an alert function.

Accounting and Finance: Exclusion of paper documents by the digitization of invoices and the implementation of optimized workflows help to accelerate processing and approvals between many departments.

Is A Workflow Manager Considered An ECM?

Yes. A Workflow Manager makes short work of your document management. It automates procedures, enables simultaneous work, and makes operations more comprehensible, which leads to optimum control.

The software is implemented quickly and simply, and its intuitive interface ensures the highest user satisfaction. Despite a high level of standardization, a Workflow Manager is flexibly scalable and easily adaptable to your procedures and requirements without elaborate customization.

The Workflow Manager can be easily individualized. At the same time, it offers pre-configured standard modules for procurement, sales, human resources, and contracts, which can be used separately or in combination.

  • The Workflow Manager can be implemented within a few days and provides you with the many advantages of a Document Management Solution (DMS) without long-term customizing.
  • Drafting company-typical workflows reduces processing times, supports teamwork, and facilitates control.
  • Thanks to the intuitive user interface and the high-performing full-text search function, all documents and information can be found quickly and conveniently.
  • Our flexible, scalable Workflow Manager is based upon the ECM platform “nscale,” developed by Ceyoniq, (a KYOCERA Group Company).

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