Knowledge tree whitepaper   8 best practices for document management
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Knowledge tree whitepaper 8 best practices for document management

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  • 1. Best Practices for Document Management How many documents, spreadsheets, and presentations do you handle in a day? Two? Five? A dozen? Now multiply that across your entire organization. Thousands of proposals, invoices, contracts, and other documents are created, edited, and shared by your teams every 24 hours. With so many documents generated each day, how can you effectively work with colleagues to co-author a document? How can you be sure that a proposal has been validated? And how can you store, locate, and share the right document with your team? KnowledgeTree can help. Introduction  Ensuring compliance with regulatory regimes by securely storing and monitoring access to Document management solutions have arisen as documents. a way to address the challenge. Typically these tools are used to overcome the document chaos Regardless of your goal, by beginning the process that many legal, finance, HR, and operations here you can better understand your criteria for professionals feel when confronted with tens of selecting a tool. thousands of files. But how do you choose and implement the right 2. Identify Business Processes document management solution for your organization? Let’s walk through 8 steps that will The next stage is to determine which business help you select the tool that is right for you. processes would benefit from tooling. This helps to boost adoption and demonstrate value in your organization. Good processes for documents 1. Define Objectives management: Before embarking on a document management  Require reviews and approvals before a deployment, you should know what success document can be finalized. means. Some common goals for document management are:  Have periodic re-evaluations of documents, for instance for contracts that are renewed  Increasing efficiency by helping users to annually. quickly locate and share documents.  Involve a high-degree of collaboration across  Reducing paper consumption by connecting teams, with multiple team members document management tools with fax servers contributing or editing content. and scanners, keeping all documents electronic. Typically, you’ll find processes like contract management, employee on-boarding, sales  Promoting collaboration by allowing teams to proposal generation, and invoice payments are work together to co-author documents. This strong candidates for document management. can radically increase quality as colleagues’ insights can be included and managed.This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/3.0/ or send a letter to CreativeCommons, 171 Second Street, Suite 300, San Francisco, CA 94105, USA www.KnowledgeTree.com
  • 2. 3. Determine Your Delivery Model Document management has evolved significantly since it was first envisioned. Now, you can choose on-premise software that is installed on hardware you purchase, or cloud models that reside on secure servers off-premise. Which model you choose will be a factor of your organization’s structure and how it will use the technology. On premise technology gives you control over your physical infrastructure. It does not require an internet connection, and you generally customize Document alerts are a key attribute for many these installations heavily. decision-makers. There are drawbacks. The capital outlay and ongoing upgrade and maintenance costs drain IT 4. Identify requirements resources that could have been deployed toward innovation. Also, to access the repository Now, we can move into the evaluation of which generally requires access to a VPN, which can document management solution makes sense for complicate usage. your organization. There are many functional Cloud-based software has attributes beyond deployment models that you should consider: the advantage of a  If your team is a heavy user of Microsoft Office, integration into that suite makes sense. predictable, generally This typically allows you to download the latest version of a document, edit or co-author it, and check it back in without version lower, monthly cost. conflicts.  Documents that must be periodically reviewed can be better managed with alerts. Alerts can Cloud-based software has the advantage of a be set at specific times or for lengths of time to predictable, generally lower, monthly cost. These notify you or a team that a document must be tools tend to be easy to use, quick to deploy, reviewed. accessible from any internet connection, and intuitive for users. And since cloud infrastructure  Managing the lifecycle of a document so that is managed by a specialized team, there is a the correct people review, contribute, and strong regimentation of security and up-time authorize it before it is completed is a key protocols. attribute for many users. However, some perceive a loss of control when a  Finding a document among tens of thousands tool is run in the cloud. Further, there may be a is not easy. You need to be able to assign rich loss of customizability in some tools. And cloud- descriptions that help users locate what they based tools that lack desktop synchronization will need. be inaccessible when there is no internet  Your search capability should allow you to connection. look within a document and within metadataThis work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/3.0/ or send a letter to CreativeCommons, 171 Second Street, Suite 300, San Francisco, CA 94105, USA www.KnowledgeTree.com
  • 3. so you can quickly find what you and your folders; by setting a base model up-front, colleagues have stored. you’ll get a leg-up on organization.  Collaboration among team members has been  You can also organize documents using identified as one of the most critical elements descriptors and metadata. By determining of a document management tool. With activity which metadata is required, you can enforce feeds and the ability to share ideas, your policies and ensure that documents are easy documents are enriched. to group and locate.  You want to ensure that you have access to  Different users and groups will need access to your documents on a global basis, wherever certain documents, and some need to be you need them. Internet-powered tools allow restricted. You should assess which groups you to easily access documents from any will use the tool and what they should be connected device. permitted to access.  Security is always important. Are there tools to ensure user authentication? Are there Because many users will offline backups and other disaster recovery protocols? access the document management tool via With the right requirements identified you can better choose the right system for you. 5. Demonstrate candidate systems Microsoft Office, it’s important to integrate Now that you have defined the criteria that will lead to a decision, the next step is to evaluate which tool makes sense. A good step is to narrow the selection by trialing software. Some tools do offer the ability to try before you buy. Then, once with the suite. you have identified and weighted your criteria, you can contrast the various solutions and select your 7. Get started with the system winner. Now we’re ready to start rolling out the system to 6. Prepare the groundwork users. A thought-through plan will make rollout simple to complete. You want to ensure that your document management tool is well used and well structured.  Tools often have an email notification system Your aim is to overcome document chaos, and that allows you to invite users and provide that starts at this stage. You should look into them with a sign-up process. criteria like:  The more relevant documents in the  What kind of documents do you plan to store? document management tool, the more Will there be contracts? Invoices? incentive users have to use it. Some tools Understanding the types of documents will offer bulk upload functions that make it easy to affect how you group, name, and secure your add thousands of documents at once, documents. increasing momentum.  What is the taxonomy of your documents?  Many of your documents will be created via You can generally organize documents into scanning existing paper documents, or via a fax server. Integration with these technologiesThis work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/3.0/ or send a letter to CreativeCommons, 171 Second Street, Suite 300, San Francisco, CA 94105, USA www.KnowledgeTree.com
  • 4. can further simplify the addition of large Conclusion numbers of documents.  You should make sure that business When your organization depends on documents processes are tuned with your document to be well-controlled, you need to implement a management tooling. This could mean setting document management solution. Following these up workflows for approving or processing 8 steps and best practices, you can successfully documents that match your preferred lifecycle. choose and launch tooling and rein in document It could also mean creating pre-configured chaos. folder templates for standard activities, like all content needed for a new client. Get Started!  Because many users will access the With KnowledgeTree you can efficiently create, document management tool via Microsoft organize, and share documents with your team Office, it’s important to integrate with the suite. and authorized external parties. KnowledgeTree Generally, these tools are add-ons that can be makes document management simple. simply downloaded and installed as a supplement to a document management tool. You can even get started with a complimentary trial to see the power of the tool first hand. For 8. Ensure adoption more information, please visit KnowledgeTree.com. The proof is in the execution. You need to make sure that your teams are effectively using your document management solution. Typically, a network effect occurs with document management: as more people use the technology, more people are attracted to it. To ensure adoption:  Make training available through online training and discussion boards. That lets people get comfortable with using a tool. Of course, the more intuitive a tool is, the simpler this step becomes.  Communicate policies to co-workers so they understand the taxonomy and policies for your document management tool. That will ensure that proper organization gets off to a good start.  Start collaborating and sharing. The network effect will get going when you start including colleagues in your process. So, share your documents. Include them in the editing and content creation process. Make sure that the right people are incorporated into document lifecycles.This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/3.0/ or send a letter to CreativeCommons, 171 Second Street, Suite 300, San Francisco, CA 94105, USA www.KnowledgeTree.com