Driving business agility and efficiency with Enterprise Content Management

In an information-rich environment, it is becoming more important for organisations to integrate meaningful and relevant content into their core business processes. With the sheer volume of data to be managed, organisations must plan for this now or risk content mismanagement and business disruption.

We’re seeing growth not only of structured data, but also a significant increase in unstructured data such as electronic documents, spreadsheets, PDF files and scanned images – the type of information that has an essential role in helping organisations gain a better understanding of industry trends and their customer markets.

As unstructured data becomes increasingly digitised and connected throughout an organisation, the management, processing and analysis of that data becomes a critical competitive factor for organisations. This is especially so with the advancements of social media, the various types of new files, and the unprecedented speed at which data is being created. It takes new-generation solutions such as Enterprise Content Management (ECM) solutions to capture, manage, process and integrate today’s unstructured data into core business systems.

Evolution of information management

In the past, CIOs focused on automating and improving processes related to structured data, such as contracts, customer information, or transactional data, relying on Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems to analyse and process all of this. However, there has always been data that ERP systems have not been able to capture – the unstructured data. Experts estimate that 80 to 90 percent of the data in any organisation today is unstructured.

Together with structured data, unstructured data and content contains a wealth of valuable information that can help organisations gain a better understanding of their customers, as well as, provide more innovative and responsive products and services. Those that can figure out a way to properly collect, process and use unstructured information can improve their bottom line, reduce costs and respond more quickly to changing market and customer sentiment.

As information continues to increase in scale and evolve in its usability, organisations need to invest in automating business processes and tools that not only analyse structured data, but also incorporate unstructured data into the business process to further improve their business efficiency. ECM brings a new generation of information management, allowing companies to build on what they have already invested with core business systems to extract even more out of these investments with unstructured content, workflow, case management as well as mobility enhancements.

Finding the right glue

In a business environment where constant change is the norm, it’s a challenge for companies to feel they have control over their information and how to use it. It takes the right platform – the right “glue” – to manage all the information across the organisation. For example, OnBase by Hyland as a single enterprise information platform manages content, processes and cases, combining ECM, case management, business process management (BPM), records management and capture functionality on a single platform. By centralising important business content in one secure location and uniting critical systems with content, OnBase empowers organisations to become more agile, innovative, efficient and effective.

One example of this platform in action can be seen with Makati Development Corporation (MDC), a leading construction company in the Philippines. Managing a construction project is a huge endeavor. When broken out into its parts – project management, design management, progress reporting, etc., there is a huge amount of data to collect, store and manage. MDC’s Construction Management Group faced the challenge of organising their unstructured data, specifically, drawings and markups as a function of design management.

Typically, drawings undergo several revisions. With the number of revisions required to multiple sets of drawings covering hundreds of pages per set, there is a high likelihood for errors to occur, especially when it comes to manual, human-driven processes. However, these errors are set to be minimised by automating processes using a single enterprise information platform.

A better way to manage unstructured information

ECM is about managing the lifecycle of information as it flows through organisations and, even more importantly, how it is used on a daily basis. A fully formed information management solution encompasses the full breadth of an organisation’s needs – capturing, storing, managing, analysing and applying information to make better informed decisions and more efficient exchanges while improving productivity and delivering exceptional customer experiences. ECM ensures that the right information gets to the right people at the right time, quickly and accurately, improving business operations and profitability in one strategic move.