Three ways of making the information in your content repositories more accessible
22/10/14 - Written by Shaun McDowall, Technical Consultant, Integritie
Shaun is a customer-centric technologist with a deep understanding of document-based business processes which has been developed over several years. He is passionate about using technology to reduce costs whilst improving the user experience. Shaun has helped many individuals and organisations to overcome their technical and human challenges in the quest for streamlined document processes.
Organisations need a holistic approach to managing their content. My fellow-contributors to this blog have written about many of the tools and processes which Integritie have developed to encourage and foster this, helping to ensure that regulatory and compliance obligations are met in a cost-effective and sustainable manner.
Our world-class ECM platform KC Online, which can be hosted either in our cloud or on organisations' premises, has been welcomed by many who continue to reap the benefits of its secure storage and rich set of features. Our platforms are under continuous development and we are constantly seeking better ways to engage and delight our customers.
I'm going to touch on three of KC Online's features which are often missed by administrators but which all add value to repositories and make them more usable.
"The Cloud" has been the subject of many discussions, usually with the conclusion that it somehow heralds a "brave new world" of which every organisation should be a part. The concept of "ECM in the cloud" is very powerful and there are compelling reasons to consider this.
1. MS-Office Integration
IBM Content Navigator, available with KC Online, is a modern web-based user interface which provides the means of interaction with repositories. It replaces older interfaces which were often awkward, unfriendly and unintuitive. Customers who have deployed Navigator have the option of providing their MS-Office users with a plugin which brings many of the features and functions in the web interface right into their productivity software, whether they use, Word, Excel, PowerPoint or Outlook. It simply adds an extra tab to the Office Ribbon (see screenshot) and users can interact with their Repositories without even having to open a web browser.
Not only can documents be added to the repository directly from within MS-Office but searches can now be carried out as well. Search templates which were previously defined are made available in Office and the search results can be viewed. Users are able to “check out” documents and store edits to those documents as new versions, or they can just open and view copies of these documents. These functions are available in an interface that they use every day and are familiar with. Very little training or familiarisation is necessary; the vast majority of users with be productive immediately, keeping deployment costs low whilst avoiding the temptation to store documents outside the repository.
Teamspaces are a collaborative feature of Content Navigator which provides a view of all the objects that a team needs to complete its tasks. This appears in one “space” which is accessible to a “team”, hence the name. A Teamspace can be used to organise and share content, facilitate recurring work, and group specific items such as documents, folders, and searches that are needed to work on a project. This powerful feature means that team members get access to their content more quickly, enabling them to be more productive.
3. Content Navigator for Mobile
Many users of ECM systems are mobile and Content Navigator has a highly developed mobile interface which is delivered as a mobile application. The Content Navigator app is available for mobile handsets and tablets on both iOS and Android operating systems. The apps are available for download free of charge in the relevant App Stores. If mobile access to a repository is not appropriate, this can easily be disabled by an administrator.
The entire set of core Navigator functions such as searching, viewing and adding documents is available in the mobile apps but extra useful functionality has been added which permits images captured with a device’s camera to be added straight to the repository. This feature would be practical for users whose interaction with their ECM repository involves the addition of photographs, such as estate agents or insurance adjusters. It’s also possible to capture documents. Tight integration is provided with IBM’s Datacap Taskmaster Capture in order to render images captured with devices’ cameras into machine-readable formats, so that the content of the documents can be used – for example OCR could be carried out on captured documents.
This cutting-edge feature turns mobile devices into very capable document capture tools. Mobile users whose tasks involve the collection of documents would previously have been required to send these documents to a central facility for scanning. They can now capture these in the field, improving customer service by shortening the time that documents take to reach in-house workflows and reducing costs.
Steve Jobs was once quoted as saying that, "Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works." The look and feel of Content Navigator has been radically improved over the look and feel of its predecessors; the way it works is the result of a complete rethink. Information in ECM repositories is now more accessible than ever and is accessible in a cost-effective and friendly manner. Best of all, Content Navigator connects to many content repositories and is supplied as standard with KC Online.
For more Information on Integrities KC Online solution, please email sales@Integritie or click here.
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