Newforma discusses how to generate more value from your document management system
Electronic document management systems – EDMS – bring discipline to file management and project delivery processes. Engineering and construction companies employ solutions such as Bentley® ProjectWise®, IBM® FileNet®, and Microsoft® SharePoint® prevent team members from overwriting each other’s work, enforce adherence to file naming conventions, and ensure everyone works with the most up-to-date files. Large engineering firms tell Newforma that as much as 30 percent of their files are managed using document management systems. That metric means 70 percent of the firm’s project information resides outside the EDMS, in locations such as file and email servers. As a result, document management systems become yet another information silo to be integrated into larger project delivery processes, such as sharing files, responding to request for information, and processing submittals.
One solution to the challenges of siloed information and disconnected workflows is to implement a project information management (PIM) system that embraces all information sources. Such an environment eliminates gaps between different information sources and enables users to use consistent workflows across projects. Such a system enables casual users of the EDMS to check files out of and into the system from the same project information management interface they use to access files on the local area network or a cloud server. They don’t have to learn a new process. Such a system provides a seamless workflow for sharing files, collaborating with team members inside and outside the company, managing contract administration, and more As a result, they’re more prone to use the EDMS, reliability of information improves, and the document management system’s value to the firm rises.