Creating Dynamic Document Management with Microsoft SharePoint
The goal of document management is not merely to provide an organizational system, but to create a system that is both intuitive and immersive. Information must be retrievable with a minimum of fuss, and users must have complete confidence that they will be able to find the most up-to-date version of the documents they require.
If a business chooses a document management system that meets all of these criteria, then employees will embrace it as a time saver rather than viewing it as a hindrance and finding ways to avoid using it. In turn, their consistent use will make system even more effective.
Microsoft’s SharePoint brings these key qualities to the table, and allows companies to begin implementing its structure and best practices right out of the box.
An Intuitive User Experience, An Immersive Environment
Creating a document management system is easy. Ensuring that people will actually use it is hard.
SharePoint succeeds by helping to make users’ lives easier on the front end, when data and documents are being created. By making sure that the act of adding information to the system is intuitive, SharePoint allows users to conform to best practices without having to think about it.
In addition to creating an intuitive user interface, SharePoint also creates an immersive environment. Most document management systems rely on employees to self-police their behaviors. That works in theory, but as soon as the demands and distractions of a real world environment intrude, it’s all too easy to fall out of the best practices required for proper document management.
One of SharePoint’s great strengths is that it doesn’t exist in a vacuum, but is a fully integrated component of Microsoft’s business solutions. By incorporating data management into an overall solution that includes elements such as Office, Project, and OneDrive, SharePoint makes it easy for users to contribute to document management, rather than placing a perceived burden on them. For those organizations not interested in fully embracing the Microsoft environment, SharePoint also has excellent interoperability with many legacy systems. In either scenario, SharePoint is able to create the immersive environment needed to help users commit to the chosen system.
What Document Management Means to the Bottom Line
Effective document management allows users to contribute to the company’s wealth of data resources, and discourages them from taking files outside of the company’s reach. This translates to less time and expense spent determining who has needed data or emailing files back and forth, all of which leads to increased efficiencies across the board. SharePoint allows users to locate their desired document quickly and painlessly, creating an environment that reduces second-guessing and prevents resources from being spent on ‘re-inventing the wheel’.
Industries that operate under some degree of regulation can benefit dramatically from a SharePoint solution. Tracking all compliance documents is a time-intensive process, one that many businesses struggle with on an almost daily basis. A properly deployed document management system can save time, money, and compliance headaches by delivering required documents upon request.
Of course, not all companies are heavily regulated, but they do all have customers. When a customer makes contact with a business, he or she is looking for some kind of information, whether it’s a potential sale or a customer service issue. When employees are able to access the information that customer requires, the result is a satisfied customer and an employee who is ready to move on to the next task.
Whether looking at legal compliance or payroll savings, the bottom line is that a good document management system translates directly to time saved, more efficient employees, and happier customers. Microsoft SharePoint provides an intuitive environment for users, and makes setup and deployment of document management easy for any size business.