As knowledge workers, documents are as vital to us as the hammer is to the blacksmith. Managing documents, however, can seem like a huge task – one that can be both daunting and tedious. But it doesn’t have to be. Here we lay down the foundations for easy document management.

Meet the triplets

Let me introduce you to the three sisters of document management: Storage, Syncing, and Sharing. A powerful trio crucial to your document management strategy. For instance, not having sufficient storage space will affect the syncing of your files, which could then have a negative effect on your ability to share files and edit documents in the cloud. So, if any one of these sisters isn’t pulling her weight in your document management process then you will likely run into delays and frustrated employees. Here are five areas that you need to organise if you want your document management to go without a hitch.

1. The right permissions and access

Controlling access to your documents gives you more control over who can see what in your business. You may have documents that only authenticated users can access, and you may have certain documents that are for external use. Perhaps you wish to make some documents available to all authenticated users, including clients, but restrict other documents to certain clients. But it’s not just about restricting information, we also need to consider how we organise our information. For example, SharePoint uses a three-tier structure for easy document management:

  • Parent folder(s) – a parent folder is the trunk of your document management tree, the main support structure.
  • Sub folder(s) – sub folders are the branches that stem from the parent folder, and you may have sub-folders within sub-folders.
  • Document(s) – these are the leaves of your document management tree, or individual files that sit within your parent or sub folders.

By default, permissions are inherited from the parent folder, which can create security problems. For instance, the only way to give an employee access to the “Accounting Template” would be to grant them permissions on its parent folder – “Finance”. But this means they now have access to everything else within the Finance folder. To rectify this, you would need to remove permissions on every other folder or document – to restrict access to specific individuals.

2. Defence against conflicted copies

Cyber-crime, malicious attacks, and data corruption all help to depict the cloud as an untrustworthy quagmire. When it comes to cloud security, ‘data loss’ is a scary thought for most. The truth is far less theatrical. In reality, 64% of data loss is actually caused by other people overwriting or accidentally deleting documents. This means users are constantly having to deal with several different versions of their work.

In OneDrive for Business, if you create a conflicted copy, this becomes listed. OneDrive for Business creates two copies of the file and informs you that there is a conflict. It doesn’t let you automatically resolve the conflict, but simply lets you know there is one.

3. Document retention and audit compliance

Staying compliant is all about knowing what data you have and keeping it in line with governmental regulations like the GDPR. Since most of this sensitive data will be stored in your documents, good record management will ensure the systematic control of their lifecycle. Records can be anything from birth certificates and x-rays to website content and client databases. Managing them includes identifying, classifying, storing, securing, retrieving, tracking, destroying or archiving them.

4. Consistent folder structure

Nested folders tend to be the favourite way to structure folders; picture a filing cabinet, with three drawers in each, and several folders in each one. Alternatively, you could organise by time, with folders and subfolders for each year and month. Either way a consistent folder structure helps people to easily find information at work.

Sometimes these methods seem like we’ve just moved the old filing cabinet into the cloud and made it digital. You still must open the drawer (parent folder) and you still have to flick (scroll) through the numerous folders to retrieve your document. We also have to clean-up our old files every few months by archiving or discarding old data by dragging it to the recycling bin.

5. Master remote deletion

More than half the world now uses a smartphone. And for many two or more devices at work is the norm. Imagine how easy it is to leave a company smartphone or mobile device on the backseat of a taxi, or a laptop on the train, all containing highly classified information about the business. Master remote deletion solves that dilemma with a single click, which means that any device anywhere in the world can be wiped instantly. Think of it as your own mini data detonator.

The Easier way

These five points are key to maintaining a secure document management strategy. But if you use OneDrive for Business, for instance, you may not always have the necessary functions over our document management to execute a strategy the way you want to.

Unlike most SaaS platforms like SharePoint or OneDrive for Business, Easier365 will help make your document management a much easier endeavour. For example, Easier365 can retrieve your version history even when you’re offline, so you can choose to view, accept or reject any changes made to your files – giving you full organisational control over your documents.

To remain compliant, it’s essential to develop a specialised records storage plan to protect the authenticity, usability and integrity of these records. With Digilink, you can take advantage of automatic metadata synchronisation, access to Views and top-level version control, while your content types remain supported. A sophisticated and flexible document management platform is therefore essential to executing your records storage plan.

Easier365 makes it easy to organise your files with a clear user interface that shows you exactly where your files are, even giving you visibility over who last edited, saved, or moved your documents. When it comes to great document management you need to choose a simple and effective solution. Easier365 makes that choice a lot easier. So, when you’re looking for easy document management, look no further than Easier365.

If it sounds like Easier365 could help you, you can start your free trial today or get in touch and we’ll happily answer any questions you may have.