How document management solutions can help with growing governance and compliance concerns

| 15 May 2014

How document management solutions can help with growing governance and compliance concerns By Andrew Griffith, product manager: office products at Bidvest company, Konica Minolta South Africa

Today, governance and compliance are critical company priorities, particularly in light of the growing regulation and legislation environment relating to how information is retained and disposed of, such as FICA and the upcoming Protection of Personal Information (POPI) act.

As these regulations are compelling companies to keep more data, for longer and with greater security measures, document management solutions are playing an increasingly important role in compliance, allowing organisations to capture, identify, organise, prioritise, store, secure, archive, preserve, retrieve, distribute, track and (when the time comes) responsibly destroy documents.

More value, greater flexibility

Thankfully, document management compliance responsibilities have grown less onerous through the advent of more flexible technology. In fact, an effective document management system is capable of increasing business value, streamlining workflow and simplifying regulatory compliance. While a digital document management system cannot automatically make a business compliant, it can ease the burden of fulfilling stringent multi-regulatory rules and retention requirements. And, with the right technology, organisations can gain efficiency, improve profitability and increase productivity, all while reducing the cost of compliance.

Today's document management offerings can leverage existing platforms, while being customisable and bringing additional security measures into place. Having said this though, while many digital imaging players can provide this type of capability, document management can only assist by looking beyond the device itself and the information generated therewith, to the people and processes that determine success. To ensure document management success, there are only two requirements that a company needs to follow; the first is make it mandatory and the second is to make it easy.

Make it mandatory. Make it easy.

To begin with, a company must establish internal controls for maintaining, preserving and accessing its electronic records, so as to ensure that these records are accurate, true and complete, as well as safe from loss, destruction or tampering. These internal controls must include written procedures that all company staff is obliged to follow.

The ultimate goal of these procedures should be to create a document management infrastructure wherein the veracity and security of the company's records cannot be questioned. Once captured, the information must be organised in a manner that permits easy location, access and retrieval.

It’s all about the integration

Traditionally, a relationship with an office automation solution supplier was transactional and one dimensional – essentially the supply of a device along with a maintenance contract; yet with the provision of document management solutions, the device can now provide immense business value, enhance both efficiencies and performance and assist with compliance to legislation.

Today, people are buying a printer for the access it gives to data rather than the device itself. At the same time, the machine must also be able to integrate with the client's existing business solutions and processes, such as enterprise content management (ECM) and enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions.

With a vast amount of experience in integration with third party solutions, such as SharePoint, Documentum and SAP, Konica Minolta South Africa is the only company within its market segment to have been named as a Microsoft Silver Partner with an Application Development Silver competency, positioning it within the top five percent of Microsoft partners worldwide.