What is enterprise content management (ECM) software?
Marketing materials, contracts, email messages, client presentations and pitches, spreadsheets, text files, .pdfs, photos, videos, forms, invoices, resumes from job applicants. Organizations small and large are content-creating machines. And while creating that content might come easily, keeping it organized is no small feat.
That’s where enterprise content management (ECM) solutions come in. They allow you to organize and manage your content throughout its life cycle – from creation to archive. But just like everything, all enterprise content management systems aren’t created equally – so let’s take a look at some of the features that can help keep your content organized (and accessible), while helping your team function more efficiently.
- A single repository for a diverse range of content types: By choosing an ECM service that allows you to store video, spreadsheets, images, text documents, and more in a single location, you can keep all of your files for a specific project or initiative together.
- Create main folders with a virtually endless number of subfolders: This way, if you have a project or initiative that’s ongoing or occurs annually, you can simply create one main folder for, say, Trails Cleanup, then create subfolders for every year that you work on the initiative. Within each of those subfolders, you could create additional subfolders for things like contracts, volunteer release forms, marketing materials, etc.
- Easily edit document properties or metadata: With the power to locate and edit a file’s metadata from within a document, you can save time and ensure that files are labeled correctly for future searches.
- Control access to information: Not everyone in an organization needs access to every document, and with an enterprise content management system that allows you to apply defined permissions to documents, groups of files, entire sections of the system, or to the system itself, you can tightly control who sees what.
- Work collaboratively: Some ECM solutions allow you to create document workflows that make it possible to track and collaborate with others on document-oriented processes using the programs that you already rely on.
- Play media content from within your enterprise content management system: For organizations that use video and audio files, the ability to play media from within the ECM can save your team time by reducing the number of steps required to view or listen to it.
- Store and protect business records and important legal files: With a secure repository, you can ensure that your records are not only stored in a locked, and final state but that they’re easy to locate and retrieve if they’re ever required in legal discovery. And, with convenient access to all of your documents, it can help reduce your overall discovery costs.
- Keyword search: An EMC service that allows users to search for documents and information by keyword can help your team locate files that they may not be aware of, but may that be relevant to a project they’re working on – which can help them save time and work more efficiently. Searchable areas should include the document text, metadata, annotations, etc. In addition, documents should also be searchable by creation date.
- Accessible on a range of devices: By choosing an enterprise content management solution that is designed for use on desktops, laptops, tablets and phones, users can access the files they need, when they need them – whether they’re at the office, working remotely, traveling, or at an off-site meeting
With the power to store, secure, locate, manipulate and create files and documents in a single location, enterprise content management services make it possible to streamline team communication, project work, and even legal discovery. And whether your organization has just a few employees in a single office or it consists of thousands of people worldwide, an enterprise content management system can help you stay organized.
The Growth Center does not constitute professional tax or financial advice. You should contact your own tax or financial professional to discuss your situation.