August 15, 2012 - 10:43 AM
This is a statement being offered by many but is it really content management or merely storing documents that are linked to a database record? Questions that immediately arise in my mind when I hear this statement are:
Do you provide audit logs reflecting what happens to the content?
What levels of security do you support? (Repository, folder, document, element)
How do you capture information? (Imaging, Office applications, Outlook)
What capture devices are supported? (Scanners, multi-function peripherals, cameras)
Is there an ability to use workflow to automate some processes?
What is the approach to search? (Keyword, Boolean, full-text, parametric)
Does it support versioning?
The term content management is being used more and more by suppliers of all types and sizes and while there is some truth in their claims, the question is what does content management mean to you in relation to addressing your business requirements? Peel this back again and the real question becomes, what are your business requirements in relation to content and records management and does the application you are considering deliver what you need now and provide a way to grow in the future?
In my view, there are many good applications on the market today. Some of which are focused on content management and some that are focused on a business application with bolt on content management capabilities and some that combine a good degree of both. This does not mean they are bad or will not work for you, it means that you have to become more knowledgeable in order to make the right decisions and choices. The last thing you want to do is make an investment only to find out it does not provide what you thought it would.
Imagine that you make an investment to manage risk and when an audit comes, you cannot defend your information due to a lack of audit logs that would have presented a historical view of the information in question. When you are asked to show who accessed it, when they accessed it and what they did with it, could you answer these questions confidently? If you are brought to court and asked to provide all of the information related to the case which includes electronic files, emails and even metadata associated with the case, could you do so with a level of confidence that you have found everything or would you have a high level of doubt and uncertainty? In order to make the right choices, you need to identify and define your requirements, understand the technologies and assess what is available to you. It could be that the functionality being offered is suitable to meet your needs but wouldn’t you feel better knowing it for sure?
If you are ready to move forward and are finding yourself stuck or unfocused and are not sure where to begin or what to do next, seek professional assistance and/or training to get you started. Be sure to investigate AIIM's Enterprise Content Management training program.
And be sure to read the AIIM Training Briefing on ECM (authored by yours truly). Click on the image to download and read.
What say you? Do you have a story to tell? What are your thoughts on this topic? Do you have a topic of interest you would like discussed in this forum? Let me know.
Bob Larrivee, Director and Industry Advisor – AIIM
Email me: email@example.com
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