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Document management moves beyond the back office

Simon Quicke

With the extension of compliance regulations and the need for faster and more precise customer communication the role of document management is stepping out of the back office shadows.

Traditionally resellers specialising in document management solutions have found a rich vein of business in the back office archiving and scanning information that needs to be stored.

But according to research carried out by Kofax and the Association for Information and Image Management (AIIM) there is a growing opportunity at the perimeter of organisations as firms look to capture more information from customers earlier in the process.

The survey showed customers are viewing information capture that will then feed into CRM and ERP systems as something that needs to be happening much earlier in the process.

Martyn Christian, chief marketing officer at Kofax, said that for resellers this shift in customer demand spelt out a much larger opportunity for document management.

"Customers are communicating via multi-channels - emails, letters and forms filled in at retail outlets or trade shows - and this often doesn't get fed back into the business processes until much later," he said.

He added that for a reseller the business process market was one driven by solutions and adding to that with a document management capability made the margin potential even greater.

Doug Miles, director, market intelligence at AIIM, said that getting data through an organisation quicker was a strong ROI argument.

"Automated capture at the front of any business process is likely to produce cleaner data, resulting in higher quality information, less exception handling, and better process management," he said.


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