Luckily, we have a way to simplify the various aspects of a successful ECM implementation. When broken down into smaller chunks, the components of an ECM solution can be easily clarified and understood.ECM can be chunked into six categories and all implementations include some, if not all, of these six categories:
In this post, we will focus on the first category called Capture. The Capture category is where all ECM solutions begin. Capture is the process of importing information into the ECM system and can include items such as, paper files, digital files, faxes, scans, emails, email attachments and native digital formats like MS Word, Excel, etc. along with data streams from other business systems.
For a successful ECM solution, it is critical that the Capture process is addressed and implemented well. In the early days of ECM and EDM, Capture was considered "scanning". In those times, scanning represented 80% to 90% of any information management implementation. Those implementations focused on the conversion of large volumes of paper records into digital images and the primary goal was replacement of the paper filing process with a digital, computer base solution.
ECM has evolved greatly over the years and today it is still vital to implement an efficient Capture component. However, the primary focus of any modern day ECM implementation is the efficient "movement" of information throughout the business environment. While the overall focus of ECM has changed over time it’s important to note, whatever the solution, it always begins with the importing of information into the ECM system and the old adage of "garbage in, garbage out" still holds true. All successful Capture solutions include some form of the following three components:
- Capture – The act of importing the information or data into the ECM environment.
- Process – Labeling and identifying the captured information, also called indexing.
- Verify – Validating that the captured information is accurate and indexed correctly.
The Capture process has evolved since the early days of tedious and labor intensive manual data verification. Due to improved and advanced technology, the capture, processing and verifying of data has become more powerful than ever, offering greater speed and flexibility by linking with business systems providing better accuracy and improved productivity to our ECM user community.