It’s no surprise that no two businesses are exactly alike and certainly no two employees are either. Our differences, along with the options provided by technology and changing circumstances, create a tremendous number of possible outcomes as it relates to information creation. This is especially true of information in the form of documents.
Every day in every business, employees are creating documents, searching for documents, receiving new documents and sharing documents with others. It’s imperative that the information makes sense, otherwise errors are made and time is wasted. But since we are all different, don’t be surprised at how someone else defines what a document is and in what form it’s delivered.
Document management systems (“DMS”) have to be about more than just finding documents, they have to be tools to help organize and make sense of the information. In that respect these systems need to be able to help users collect, organize and share information, regardless of the variety of formats and user defined “documents”.
When working with scanned documents, you really don’t know what to expect and it could be complicated. In the interests of time, some users will take the stack of mortgage documents to the scanner, place the whole stack in the feeder and press go – one giant PDF emerges. Or maybe the scanner can only take 25 pages at a time so the 75 page report comes out as three 25 page PDFs and all three go into the DMS.
Use Adobe Acrobat and all its capabilities for splitting, merging and organizing documents before adding the documents to the DMS. Or ideally use the functionality in the DMS to split or assemble the files into actual documents; a contract, a letter, a report, etc. before uploading. Controls in place when adding documents will help keep information in a consistent useable format- easy to find, understand and share.
Try to avoid short cuts. Users may not want to take the extra minute or two to follow procedures. Not following those procedures will most certainly lead to wasted time and possibly poor decisions. Train users on the capabilities of the DMS and on the reasons for the controls. Show them the benefits of