Resources

16-04-2018

What is a Electronic Document Management System (EDMS)?

And is it GDPR compliant?



EDM – Electronic Document Management is the use of software and computer systems to store, manage and retrieve key electronic documents and images. Those documents may have existed from creation as an electronic record, but in the large majority of cases, images have been created from legacy paper documents.

These documents have been passed through a document scanning service, such as that provided by Kelly’s Storage, where the information pertaining to that document is captured (indexed) to ensure that document can be located once stored.

EDM enables businesses to engage in collaborative working across multisite locations. Locking documents for editing in order that one person’s changes do not overwrite another’s.

Enforcement of version control ensuring an audit trail and history of how that document came to being is vital in the battle for compliance, highlighting all the changes made to a document from its creation and throughout its entire lifecycle with the ability to roll back to previous versions.

However one key issue that continually crops up is the digital conversion of legacy paper documents and the virtues of paper records vs digital records.

Apart from the obvious physical differences between the two forms of records, there are several benefits to converting your legacy documents in to a digital format using a scanning service such as that provided by Kelly’s Storage.

  • Costs – Although it may seem that the costs of conversion are high in comparison to off-site storage of paper records, the costs over time will diminish substantially. Paper records require more personnel to manage and maintain them. EDM means less man power, less time to access, and less storage space are needed.

  • Storage – We are all familiar with ever growing mountains of paper. Paper requires more and more space; is less environmentally friendly; and can decay over time if not kept in the correct storage environment. Digital records can be stored in private secure clouds, using fewer resources and providing easier access to those that need to use them where ever they are in the world.

  • Security – Both paper and digital records are susceptible to security concerns. Paper is open to compromise resulting from a break in, human error, or damage from a natural disaster. Often the paper record is the sole copy and the business will not have the ability to recreate that document should the need arise. Digital records are largely vulnerable to unauthorised access should the correct security and processes not be in place. A solid EDM solution removes this vulnerability.

  • Access – for legacy paper records to be used they must first be located and recovered from a physical storage facility, transported to the correct location and then distributed internally to the end user. A time consuming process. Digital records held within an EDM system are accessible to those with permission almost instantly without the need for third party involvement.

  • Readability and Accuracy – Legacy paper records can often have been created in full or contain elements of hand written information and as such be difficult to read and understand. Information may be lost or misinterpreted as a result. Digital records have searchable key indexed fields of data leaving less room for confusion.

Kelly’s Storage are able to offer a robust scanning solution to help you make a smooth transition from paper records to a digital solution.

With purpose built facilities, state of the art security, 24/7 emergency access and flexible solutions to suit all shapes and sizes of business, Kelly’s Storage can provide complete information management and deliver peace of mind with a personal touch.


Author

Armand Roux

Business Development Manager

Armand has been in the Records Management industry since 2004 and has accumulated a wealth of industry knowledge in both the private and public sector. Armand is also a keen golfer and an ex-professional rugby player.

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