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    KYOCERA Enterprise Content Management FAQ's

    Here are some FAQ's around Enterprise Content Management.
    people discussing

    Digitally managing all your content.

    Enterprise Content Management (ECM or otherwise called Content Services) allows for instant, digital access to information; enhanced operational efficiencies; decreased cost of compliance; and improved customer service. Our Q&A will answer your questions

    • Enterprise Content Management (Content Services) FAQs

    1. What is the ROI of an ECM Solution?

    By implementing an ECM solution, companies gain a shortcut to greater profitability without the complications and costs of other approaches.

    Identifying clear workflows, enables organisations to reap the rewards of ECM (Content Services). These technologies allow companies to automate workflows, leaving the most laborious, time-consuming and monotonous tasks to be carried out almost instantaneously and automatically, while enabling employees to better apply their time to more profitable activities. 

    2. What are the benefits of ECM (Content Services)?

    • Improved workflow and productivity
    • Minimised paper, office supplies, storage space and fees
    • Secure storage, backup, and transmission of content
    • Regulatory compliance
    • Secure access via multiple devices, including mobile 
    • Remote employee access
    • Increased access to current and correct resources
    • User-specific clearance preferences
    • Vertical-industry specific software
    • Centrally stored data is integrated with other crucial systems

    3. How do you find the right ECM for your business?

    ECM enables your organisation to become smarter and more efficient than your competitors. Instead of thinking of ECM as just a document storage solution that makes searching and finding them quick and easy, think of it as a way to manage documents throughout their entire workflow cycle – from creation to disposal.

    Here are some questions to consider before making a decision on the right solution for your business:

    • What are your organisation’s needs?
    • Is the ECM solution aligned with your company’s objectives?
    • What ECM solutions are similar businesses using?
    • Is it easy to use?
    • Is it easy to integrate with your existing systems and applications?
    • Is the ECM solution flexible enough for any future changes?
    • Is it cloud-based?
    • Can staff easily access files and documents when working remotely?
    • Is the solution secure?
    • Does the solution fulfil the necessary regulatory requirements?
    • Will the ECM provider offer specialised training and support during and after the implementation?

    4. Where do you start with an ECM solution?

    It is advisable to start with a smaller and simpler process. Dip your toe in the water, so to speak. It is highly probable that an existing packaged solution for this process exists. Implement it with your solutions provider and then evaluate the efficiencies and productivity that this one process has brought to your organisation. From there, you will having learnings and insights into the process to enable you to automate and create workflows for more complex processes.

    Additionally,the COVID-19 pandemic has revealed the importance of having access to business-critical information regardless of location, whether that is in the office or working remotely.

    Organisations can then take advantage of dynamic ECM solutions to solve a variety of content management challenges. Eliminating obstacles will reduce manual processes, minimise content errors, automate access classification, and provide additional benefits to organisations to allow them to focus their time and resources on high priority areas.

    5. Can ECM be customised to my requirements?

    Each solution can be customised according to the customer’s needs. The ECM solution provider will provide your business with trained document management specialists to create a customised ECM strategy to solve your specific document challenges.

    6. Does ECM development take long to perform?

    This depends on the requirements of the customer. If you need an end-to-end solution – including integration, and highly complex routing rules and database queries – the development may take longer to implement. Alternatively, if you just want to take a simple, paper-based process and make it digital, the implementation will be much shorter.

    Your ECM consultant will provide guidance, but it’s still important to understand the process to ensure a smooth transition. Ask your ECM solution provider for guidance and more information on the duration of the project, based on the areas you have identified for improvement and the expected benefits.

    The process of implementing an ECM project can be challenging, but the rewards are well worth the effort.

    7. Is ECM implementation an expensive exercise?

    Cost is related to development time required. The bigger the requirement, the greater the scope, and the higher the cost.

    Vendors will all have different cost and quoting structures, making it difficult to compare products directly. There are initial set-up costs, ongoing charges, sometimes a per-user charge, technical support fees and update charges.

    Some may be all-in-one pricing models, while others are modular in their pricing, which can make it challenging to compare.

    Basic business critical functions include:

    • Installation costs
    • Annual/ongoing license fees for X number of users
    • Annual support packages

    8. Can employees' tasks be tracked?

    The implementation of technology into a workflow process can revolutionise the way in which organisations work. Throughout every step of the process, management can maintain control and perform analysis in order to guarantee that it is progressing on track.

    Team members also gain far greater oversight on projects. If employees want to check in on an order or project, they can. Even better, they can do so quickly and easily, in just a few clicks. Gone are the days of detailed emails and chasing different staff members. ECM allows management to check in on a specific workflows and see the exact times and dates that employees have marked their part of their process as complete, or when they have viewed files. This provides businesses with far greater scope to achieve efficiencies and leads to a rounded oversight.

    9. Does ECM have audit trails for compliance?

    POPIA applies to any person or organisation that stores any type of records relating to personal information, unless those records are subject to other legislation which protects such information more stringently. The POPI Act therefore sets the minimum standards for the protection of personal information.

    The Act regulates the ‘processing’ of personal information, which includes collecting, receiving, recording, organising, retrieving, or using the information; or disseminating, distributing or making personal information available. The Act also relates to records which are already in the possession of the entity or person doing the processing.  

    With the enforcement of the Protection of Personal Information Act (POPIA) having come into effect on 1 July 2021, every business is required to comply with the standards as prescribed in the Act.

    ECM solutions have a comprehensive compliant range of print and document security features, many of which are standard. More 

    10. Can ECM solutions integrate with other systems?

    Built with an open architecture and designed for integration and interoperability, ECM integrates seamlessly with existing core business systems to manage the flow of documents and information used, ensuring the challenges specific to the industry and department are solved. ECM systems are completely customisable to business and industry needs and offer enterprise-level functionality to enhance workflows company-wide. 

    Users can easily develop integrations with any non-proprietary software, providing information on demand, as well as document collaboration and movement capabilities. However, not all ECM solutions are created equal; before committing to a brand, be sure to obtain a guarantee that the system will integrate with existing infrastructure. This will save the team time and money in the long run.

    ECM integrates seamlessly with existing core business systems to manage the flow of documents and information used, ensuring the challenges specific to the industry and department are solved. Once data has been input into a business system, such as an enterprise resource planning (ERP) tool or similar, professionals can clearly access the most up to date information and in a compatible format for their needs and their own computer systems. This avoids unnecessary delays and guarantees that professionals are not left waiting for clarification, or are unable to get started on their tasks with the right information, which would effectively be time thrown down the drain. 

    11. Why do I need an ECM (Content Services) solution?

    Many organisations face significant challenges when it comes to storing, managing and accessing company information and content. The global COVID-19 pandemic has only accentuated the value of instant, digital access to information. ECM can solve these challenges.

    ECM refers to the tools, technology and processes that enable organisations to digitally manage all their content, centrally and securely. This eliminates information silos and provides employees with timeous access to relevant information, while still offering individual business units the flexibility to react quickly to changing conditions.

    Organisations across a variety of industries are reaping the considerable benefits of ECM, including enhanced operational efficiencies, decreased cost of compliance and improved customer service. The significant impact on a company’s bottom line comes from automating the back-office processes that keep staff from focusing on customer-facing opportunities. 

    12. Will everyone in my organisation have to use ECM?

    ECM (Content Services) is made up of various components that all work together holistically to improve the way your organisation manages content. It will affect the way documents are managed right across your organisation, so it will change the way people work.

    If your organisation is new to ECM or slow to adapt to new technologies, tools, and processes, it may be a challenge to get buy-in across the company. Doing so, however, is critical. That’s why, before you start to look for an ECM solution, you should understand what this involves.

    Making the switch from manual to automated processes requires a significant change in employee behaviour, brought about through appropriate investments in training, adoption marketing and change management.

    Some of the engaging tools companies can use to smooth the transition include:

    • Classroom training, tailored to the needs of different classes of users
    • Online instructional videos
    • Interactive online learning
    • User group meetings 

    13. What can I expect from an ECM roll-out?

    To use ECM effectively, you first need to understand how the solution works.

    ECM solutions help businesses capture, store, manage, edit, route, retrieve and share electronic content in a fast and secure manner. They simplify the entry and search functions of an organisation’s digital archive to provide users with easy access to an organised content library from any device. 

    By centralising content and data, businesses can run smoothly and efficiently regardless of where employees are working from.

    An effective ECM solution will combine software, hardware, and support services in a comprehensive, end-to-end approach to provide businesses with a powerful, scalable solution tailored to their specific requirements. The right managed services provider will work with your business to create a customisable ECM strategy.

    14. How long does an ECM solution take to implement?

    There is no standard time frame for an ECM solution to be implemented. It all depends on the customer’s requirement. Only after a thorough workshop will clarity be available on what would be required to complete the implementation, giving some insight into the time frame needed.

    15. Why are corporates investing in ECM?

    An ECM solution can increase profitability, streamline workflows and simplify regulatory compliance. Companies can gain efficiency, increased productivity, and reduced overhead costs. Large public and private organisations are investing in ECM systems to reduce the time and cost related to records management and document storage and retrieval, while also ensuring that paper and electronic documents can be easily retrieved in the event of a compliance audit.

    Also, ECM offers several opportunities for ROI. Currently, the vast majority of business records exist on paper; with an ECM solution companies can eliminate paper from the organisation. The result is huge cost reductions, as the need for physical storage of documents is removed. There is a simultaneous reduction in labour costs as manual data entry is eliminated. An ECM solution also leads to increased productivity as mundane document handling tasks are done away with.

    16. How do I get my current content into a ECM Solution?

    While most electronic records are backed up in some format, paper records are often forgotten – and once they are gone, they are gone forever. With an ECM solution, a digital image of paper records is captured and preserved in an unalterable format, guaranteeing its integrity.

    17. Does ECM benefit all aspects of the business?

    Record-keeping activities impact an organisation beyond just the employees directly working with these documents daily. Records management – the supervision and administration of digital or paper records, regardless of format – requires that every employee at every level be responsible for following retention requirements. No department is immune, and every department will benefit.

    18. Can clients and suppliers also benefit from ECM?

    Technology can revolutionise the way in which organisations operate, and the revenues and profits that they generate. Without the use of Content Services, ECM, and other similar solutions, inefficiencies remain intertwined with operations. The introduction of these tools can help catapult organisations to all new levels of productivity, which will inevitably lead to greater profitability through the streamlining of workflows. These improvements have an impact on everyone in the organisation’s ecosystem, including customers and suppliers.

    ECM can provide the key to speeding up processes and getting more done. The system can be designed to develop roles which are automatically deployed in workflows. This cuts out time-consuming tasks in decision-making. ECM, however, delegates separate stages of each workflow directly to a department, team, or even a specific individual.

    When working in analogue environments, it is practically impossible to keep track of who can access a document or make changes to it. There is nothing to stop anybody in the team, or even a visitor, from passing by a desk and picking up a sheet of paper from an in-tray. In a digital world where ECM can automatically allocate documentation and ensure strict access requirements and tracking, companies have a much tighter control.

    Importantly, this builds customer and supplier trust and confidence, and demonstrates that the organisation has their best interests in mind.

    19. Is ECM a difficult system to use?

    An ECM system is a flexible, easy-to-use tool for automating and optimising business processes, organisation-wide. Companies can design a system that both fits existing IT infrastructure and optimises system performance, and it is just as easy to deploy and maintain as it is to use.

    A fully integrated component of the workflow enables users to map, model and manage business processes to efficiently achieve business goals. With its ability to integrate with a wide variety of enterprise applications, Content Services’ workflow can be used to run repeatable processes in a consistent manner across the organisation, optimising resource efficiency, cost and service delivery. 

    20. Do users need lots of training to use ECM?

    User training is not lengthy, however both user training and communication are essential when a new system is deployed and regular training and communication is necessary once the system is established.

    As new features and processes are rolled out, updating users on their usage, or even just giving them refresher training, will keep users engaged and skilled in using the ECM solution.

    Once users understand that ECM enables a smarter and more efficient organisation and that searching and finding documents will be quick and easy, they will want to be regularly updated and trained on the system.

    21. Is ECM secure enough to be uses from anywhere?

    In a digital world where Content Services can automatically allocate documentation and ensure strict access requirements and tracking, companies possess much tighter control.

    Organisations are increasingly using ECM systems to optimise records management practices and to ensure protection against any risk. An ECM system can restrict access to folders, documents, fields, annotations and other granular document properties as needed; monitor system login and logout, document creation and destruction, password changes and more; and protect sensitive metadata by controlling information access down to user access levels, individual folders, templates and fields.

    22. Does ECM offer reporting capabilities?

    Reporting tools provide information about workflows, including the average time taken to run, in a table or chart. The Workflow Administration Console supplies advanced performance options to ensure that the system’s resources are taken full advantage of and allows users to send e-mail notifications to others who have pending or overdue business process tasks. In this way, the system not only helps to automate business processes, but also makes them more transparent, giving a single location from which to monitor the organisation’s operations.

    23. Can ECM reduce the cost of compliance?

    ECM enables the management of the entire document lifecycle from data import to usage, archiving, and disposal. Users can browse imported documents and edit attribute information. Security is ensured by enabling access control.

    ECM can reduce the cost of compliance by:

    • Automating document retention and destruction.
    • Reducing the costs of long-term data preservation.
    • Managing compliance processes without interfering with lines of business.
    • Lowering the costs of supervising branch offices.
    • Eliminating the costs of offsite storage and lowering the costs of in-house storage.

    24. What kind of automation does ECM offer?

    Advanced scanning and uploading features: Allow for the import of paper and electronic records in any format from any source. When switching to a digital records system, the organisation will need to efficiently move everything to the new system. Regardless of the form of the record, the system will capture it at the earliest point of entry without additional steps. Importing via scanner, fax, and print features are critical.

    • Real-time indexing and data capture: Allows a broad range of information to be retained for easy searching, retrieval and filing.
    • Secure user-access controls: Prevent unauthorised viewing, alteration, and deletion of documents. Staff have access only to their documents they need to perform their tasks. This ensures privacy across the organisation by only allowing staff access to what they need. Authorities can be adjusted as management sees fit on a needs basis to ensure effective collaboration.
    • Sophisticated search capabilities: Users can search for a record based on content, file name, text, metadata, relation to other documents, and more. This eliminates the need to search through files and hard drives.
    • Audit trails: When it comes to important records, ECM can centralise all important documents for easy and fast retrieval. This ensures that no matter what industry the business operates in, it can adhere to the required standards to maintain compliance. This also ensures that defensibility in cases where auditors need proof of compliance.
    • Data backups: ECM protects against accidental loss due to natural disasters, human error, cyber-attacks and more by ensuring data is securely backed up.

    25. Will ECM enable my company to go paperless?

    Implementing an ECM system can remove a company’s dependency on paper. It does not necessarily mean that there is not a sheet of paper anywhere to be found, but rather that the company is making a concerted effort to reduce its use of paperwork and the risks that go with manual processes. 

    A company can share, utilise, and manage information across all departments with ECM, which manages all the content in an organisation, resulting in reduced costs, improved efficiency, and enhanced security.

    26. How does robotic process automation work in ECM?

    Many current work activities are being automated. One technology that will become increasingly more popular is robotic process automation. RPA enables organisations to automate business processes at a fraction of the cost and time normally involved, freeing up employees from doing repetitive, routine tasks, so they can focus on more higher-value strategic and creative tasks. This is especially useful in high-volume environments, where large number of transactions have to be processed, such as accounts payable invoices, sales orders, and medical claims.

    27. Can digital transformation happen without ECM?

    Digital transformation is the use of digital technologies to have a fundamental impact on all aspects of business and society. Companies often have disparate collaboration services, document sharing solutions and workflow products that are neither interconnected nor integrated. So yes, digital transformation can be done without an ECM system.

    Having said this, with an increasing focus on mobility, advanced workflow and integration and analytics, there is no question that ECM is digitally transforming, helping organisations to embrace and empower the demands of the digital enterprise. Moreover, content is at the heart of digital transformation, not only because it comprises of the information resources that need to be managed, but because it supports advanced functions associated with transformation, such as personalisation and AI-driven chatbots.

    28. Where will my information sit on an ECM system?

    On-premise, cloud, or hybrid: management can choose which ECM solution is right for the business. Traditionally, document and content management was done using an on-premise ECM solution, but cloud technologies expand the ECM offering to cloud or hybrid, combining the best of both worlds – it really depends on the business requirements.

    29. Can suppliers/customers access documents on ECM?

    Yes they can. There are two ways of accomplising this. Firstly, you can have a puplic portal where you can share these forms for public use. Secondly, you can have a secure portal where a username and password is required to access the forms.

    30. Where and how would I get the most value from ECM??

    Many organisations face significant challenges when it comes to storing, managing and accessing company information and content. ECM can solve these challenges.

    Digital documents are centrally managed so that the relevant information can be readily retrieved as required by people needing it.

    Digitisation prevents lost paper documents, and an alert function reduces the frequency of failures in conducting documentation work and processing.

    Predefining a workflow best suited to each company's approval process will preclude complicated exchanges of documents, thereby achieving more rapid document circulation and approval activities.

    ECM can improve security by enabling management to set access rights for specific employees, as well as record a log of who accessed the information and when.

    ECM integrates seamlessly with existing core business systems to manage the flow of documents and information used, ensuring the challenges specific to the industry and department are solved. Once data has been input into a business system, such as an enterprise resource planning (ERP) tool or similar, professionals can clearly access the most up to date information and in a compatible format for their needs and their own computer systems. This avoids unnecessary delays and guarantees that professionals are not left waiting for clarification, or are unable to get started on their tasks with the right information, which would effectively be time thrown down the drain.

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