If you’re an IT professional, you may spend a lot of your time and budget solving document management problems. Document management software is essential for finding documents and complying with privacy and recordkeeping requirements. However, hosting the software creates several common IT challenges.
Hosting document management software on your premises adds to infrastructure costs. You need to purchase servers and storage hardware, including spare capacity for when the amount of information you store increases.It’s difficult to predict how much server and storage capacity you will need, so you could end up buying more hardware than necessary (or not enough).
Then there’s the issue of securing the software environment. To do that, you’ll need to install security tools, monitor the environment for cyber security threats and ensure your data centre complies with security regulations.
Document management software also creates administration complexity. Typically, such systems require regular maintenance and are amongst the largest consumers of IT resources. Particularly if you need to install document management software on hundreds or thousands of computers. Problems can require client software fixes that you will need to deploy to end users, and regular patches for security issues.
If you don’t have a document management solution that natively integrates with your back-office applications, you may encounter software integration problems. For example, you may have to customise it to enable it to exchange information with your finance, asset management and human resources software. This could cause the software to stop working when you upgrade it or the integrated applications.
You may also have to deal with multiple organisations to solve problems with your document management solution. If you ask your IT integrator for help, they could bounce your request to a software reseller or vendor, for instance.
Why enterprise SaaS is a better approach
You can solve these problems by moving to a single, enterprise-wide Software as a Service (SaaS) solution with native document management integration. This is primarily because a SaaS solution is owned and managed by a third party and is delivered to you over the Internet, instead of being hosted on servers your organisation owns or controls.
SaaS reduces administration costs by freeing you from having to deploy software to users’ desktops and mobile computers. This also eliminates technical support requests that might occur when document management software installed on users’ computers stops working.
It also unburdens IT departments from maintaining specialised technical skills and provisioning new test or training environments. New staff members can get up and running quickly because all they need is a subscription and web browser.
You won’t need to worry that upgrades to the solution will cause it to break. That’s because you’ll use the same code as other organisations, which the SaaS provider regularly updates, instead of customising your own unique copy. The SaaS vendor will provide more frequent and smaller updates, allowing you to use new features as soon as they are available. You can upgrade any component of the SaaS solution and the document management features will still work.
SaaS reduces infrastructure and security costs because the SaaS vendor, or its infrastructure partner, is responsible for purchasing, managing and helping to secure the IT infrastructure the solution runs on. This allows you to resolve problems without multiple IT providers blaming each other. These advantages free up people and budgets for more strategic IT projects. A better approach than using those resources to simply keep systems running.