It is hard to believe but we are almost through October and the end of the year is in sight. As a document management reseller this is always a busy time for us. Our current clients are looking to add applications and workflows for implementation January 1st. New clients are looking to deploy systems before the start of the new year. Prospects are beginning their search for this technology looking for the right fit, and understanding functionality and cost. And our software manufacturers are releasing new versions of the software with significant enhancements that spur excitement with users.
If you currently use a document management system and are the administrator or department manager, this is a perfect time to review your current solution and make tweaks to improve the system. This may include small changes to projects or workflows, or could be major additions of adding new projects or workflows. This is an excellent time to position yourself for the start of the new year and to have all of your new systems in place before that time.
For those of you who are considering adding Enterprise Content Management (ECM) to your organization, think of this as the perfect time to select a product and vendor and conduct a discovery. For our company, the discovery is the first step in documenting the needs of our client and designing the ultimate solution, either new or add on, for them. The process involves multiple steps beginning with a current state analysis, used to create a foundation from which to build the system. Future state design, the real meat of the project, is where we work with our clients to develop their ultimate solution. It becomes the blueprint for building projects and workflows, and covers things such as user and system security, unique needs for storing and processing information and detailed descriptions of document routing and exception handling.
There are also companies out there who have never seriously considered ECM but are now realizing that it may be time to begin researching the technology to get an understanding of how it could impact their company. If you fall into this category it is a great time to start the review process. As things wind down towards the end of the year, utilize some free time between the holidays to look at products and solicit some ballpark numbers to begin assembling information for next year and beyond. If a goal for next year is to start looking at ECM solutions, this will give you a head start on that project.
Regardless of whether you are new to the technology and just beginning your research, recently committed to the technology and beginning your deployment with the anticipation of starting the new year with your system in place, or adding or tweaking your existing system, this is a great time to do it. Add it to your things to do like grocery shopping for Thanksgiving or buying presents for Christmas. Just don’t get left behind and do nothing!
Jack Arnston is a Principal at The Priton Group. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.