Navigating Document Management and Content Services Terminology

Navigating Document Management and Content Services Terminology

When looking for Content Services Solutions, the actual search for what you are looking for can be daunting due to the different terms being thrown around by a rapidly changing offering pool of products.  You’re probably wondering where to start in your own organization. We have put together some key terms and what they mean in the important space of Process Re-engineering to help you figure out what is what, and where you fit.

Business Process Management (BPM)

A business process is an activity within your organization that you use to achieve specific goals, and this includes organizational, management, and supporting operations.  BPM, therefore, is a systematic methodology for controlling and improving those processes and their workflows. The purpose of BPM is to identify potential business process improvement opportunities to optimize efficiency and productivity.  It is usually done using technology and automation, with the result being that your organization becomes better equipped to meet goals.

Content Services

Content services are best understood as a more advanced and promising alternative to traditional enterprise content management (ECM).  You can think of content services as ECM 2.0. As such, content services offer many of the same services as ECM, including:

  • Document and record management
  • Analytics
  • Data capture
  • Indexing and categorizing content
  • Searching
  • Version control
  • Workflow management and automation

ECM is more of a one-size-fits-all solution, whereas content services are more customizable and provide you with a comprehensive approach to content management, which allows you to integrate external source repositories within the content service platforms.

Digital Transformation

Digital transformation describes the changes an organization will undergo when it replaces older manual processes with modern digital ones.  As the organization integrates more and more digital technologies, business operations and processes will begin to change as well, and this will result in a better experience for customers, partners, employees, suppliers, and others.

Document Management

As the name implies, document management is a way of storing, tracking, and managing documents electronically using software and equipment. However, document management solutions aren't just about managing electronic records, but also converting paper ones into digital versions that can be maintained within the system. Other benefits of document management are that it lets you protect data by setting permissions, controlling access, enabling encryption, and preventing modifications.

Enterprise Content Management

Now that you know what content services entail, it will be easier to understand enterprise content management. ECM is also a way to capture, store, manage, and deliver content to stakeholders, partners, customers, and employees. Like content services, ECM focuses on document management and the automation of workflows. The main difference, however, is that ECM tried to accomplish its goals using a single platform, which didn’t prove effective. As such, most people now prefer content services, which promises the same goals but a more effective approach.

Enterprise Search

Although enterprise search may sound like it has more to do with Star Trek than document management, it actually refers to the process of retrieving and organizing data within your organization. As such, you can think of enterprise search as a secure navigation interface that allows you to do the following tasks with data:

  • Search
  • Index
  • Categorize
  • Retrieve
  • Display

Information Management

Information management is the name for collecting, storing and managing information assets, which can include both physical documents and electronic files. Data types that fall under the purview of information management include documents, and paper invoices, as well as emails, electronic records, and other digital assets. The primary purpose of information management is to allow you to maintain, share, and deliver information to people and organizations via websites, mobile devices, applications, and more.

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Robotic Process Automation (RPA)

RPA uses technology to automate repetitive and structured activities that are currently performed manually, such as answering customer questions, processing transactions, and entering data. The best thing about RPA is that it allows you to optimize certain processes while also freeing up employees to work on higher-value tasks.

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The language and terminology used in document management and content services are different from what you'll encounter in other fields, and it's essential to have a basic understanding of these terms if you want to fully embrace the automation and optimization of your document management solutions. This guide will give you a basic understanding of some of the most common terms that you'll run into, and this will help you navigate information when it comes time to implement new technologies, software, and processes.

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