An enterprise content management system streamlines and optimizes content from data capture through delivery. It can make life easier for your organization. Read on to learn what an enterprise content management system can do for your workflow.
1. Capturing Information
The process of data capture converts paper documents to electronic files by digitizing them, and ensures that existing files are compatible with the system. It also creates metadata for each document, which makes the documents searchable.
Paper documents are first scanned, images are cleaned and processed, and then information is extracted through technologies such as optical character recognition, handwriting recognition, intelligent character recognition, optical mark recognition, and/or barcode recognition, as applicable. The documents and files are then indexed for storage.
2. Managing Information
This is really the heart of a good enterprise content management system. After the data capture and index process is completed, the information needs to be managed throughout its life cycle. This includes functions such as:
- Document management: This controls documents from creation to archiving, including version management, search and navigation, and organization. Document management may incorporate office software suites and library services.
- Collaboration: This allows employees to work together on the documents, and includes database management, knowledge management, administration, and communications. It may integrate information from other enterprise applications.
- Web content management: This includes web portals and the ECM repository.
- Records management: This includes indexing files, managing retention and deletion schedules, and protecting information as appropriate. Metadata may be standardized across the organization or across the industry.
- Workflow and business process management: This includes data capture, administrative functions, monitoring of process status and outcomes, and tool design. Business process management is part of controlling production workflow and organizational processes.
3. Storing Information
An enterprise content management system needs to store information that is not yet ready for long-term preservation. Information can be stored in file systems, data repositories, online or nearline libraries, warehouses, or other storage technologies such as magnetic tape, magnetic online media, digital optical media, or cloud containers. More information is made available at the Adlib website.
4. Preserving Information
Preserving information in this context refers to safe storage and backup of information that is not going to change. Some industries require this for compliance or regulatory reasons. This static information, including metadata, may be migrated from older systems to newer ones as needed. Information may be preserved on optical disks, magnetic tapes, microforms, or storage networks.
5. Delivering Information
In an enterprise content management system, output management is the process of presenting usable information from the capture, management, storage, and preservation components of the system. Output management includes transformation, security, and distribution technologies. The primary functions are layout, design, and electronic publishing.
Transformations should be controlled and trackable, and may include conversions to XML and PDF format. Security management includes electronic signature functions, public key infrastructure to manage certificates and authenticity, digital rights management, and electronic watermarking. Distribution targets may include extranets and intranets, internal and external portals, email, mobile devices, data transfer, and print or digital publishing.