System and process overview
The traditional paper documents flow is illustrated below. Once an incoming document reaches the enterprise entry point, it gets registered, copied and rerouted in several consecutive steps. Statistics estimate that an average document gets copied 9 times within its lifecycle. This leads to ineffective allocation of both time and resources, as well as redundancy of information making updating and tracking virtually impossible.
With the implementation of an ECM system, each incoming document is converted to digital format and is entered as a unique original according to strict rules and policies. The paper original is registered and stored in a particular location allowing for direct centralized retrieval when needed. The system provides limited or full access from any approved location on the Internet, warranting data security and integrity.
Each user performs his tasks on a link to the unique digital document, thus any changes, notifications or updates are immediately apparent to anyone accessing it. Depending on the document type, different data fields can be appended for inputing basic details, as well as document statuses for further actions.
The diagram below illustrates how the links to the digital documents build various diagrams according to the flow of the processes and their respective places in each particular case. Most of the document links constitute a root or a node in more than one diagram, specify if the document is outgoing or incoming to the process and allow new versions to be appended, thus invalidating all previous ones.