What Enterprise Content Management System Works Best for You in 2021?

Despite amazing advancements in cutting-edge technology like VR, robotics, and neural networking, many businesses have yet to tackle the most critical challenge of all: managing their documents. 82 percent of businesses still spend billions of dollars on paper collectively, and less than half of document-based lines-of-business have a comprehensive document management strategy. It's scary. Over half of businesses have adopted big data analytics. Yet, most don't have a cohesive strategy to actually manage the documents and data that pile into their system.

Priorities are mixed up.

Those shiny mid-horizon technologies that promise the world are fantastic, but you need an infrastructure to back them up. That's where Enterprise Content Management (ECM) comes into play. The market for ECM solutions is expected to nearly triple over the next four years, growing into a $43 billion industry.

This rapid growth is fueled by nearly every other technology on the horizon. Because the simple truth is: ECM is a requirement for digital transformation. But how do you choose the right ECM platform? After all, you're not short of options. Preventing your businesses from facing digital extinction starts with investing in ECM, but the ECM you choose is just as important as having one at all.

What is Enterprise Content Management (ECM)?

Enterprise Content Management (ECM) involves end-to-end document management across your content lifecycle. This can be broken down into four core steps.

  1. Document Ingestion (e.g., imaging services, OCR, eForm ICR, etc.)
  2. Document Management (e.g., tracking, versioning, etc.)
  3. Document Storage (e.g., cloud servers, etc.)
  4. Document Delivery (e.g., retrieval services, identity and document validation, policy control, etc.)

In other words, ECM takes paper documents and digitizes them while houses your existing digital content within a comprehensive data architecture that stores, manages, and delivers that content to the right person at the right time. This definition touches multiple layers, so it may be easiest to think of ECM as an umbrella strategy that leverages multiple technologies (which are often bundled under a single platform).

Examples of these technologies include:

  • Cloud storage
  • Versioning software
  • Optical Character Recognition (OCR), Intelligent Character Recognition (ICR), and Optimal Mark Readers (OMRs)
  • Workflow automation
  • Digital archiving
  • etc.

ECM rallies all of these once-disconnected technologies under one banner and connects them to  build efficient document ecosystems. This creates flexibility for businesses. There are several "types" of ECM solutions suited to varying business needs. Since ECM is such a broad term that involves packaging and delivering multiple technologies, you have some flexibility when choosing a solution that makes sense in the context of your document ecosystem.

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To help facilitate smarter and more accurate ECM selection, DRS Imaging has built and developed a choice of ECMs over the past decade. As early adopters of cloud ECM solutions, we've spent years perfecting the perfect ECM infrastructure for a variety of businesses. Using this knowledge and our amazing cloud architecture, we offer four distinct ECM solutions for businesses.

Comparing 4 World-class DRS ECM Solutions

We build end-to-end custom solutions, sure. But we wanted to develop four out-of-the-box ECM platforms that would help businesses of varying sizes and needs. Our partners include Kodak Alaris, Canon, PSIGEN, Docuware, and CA, and we currently integrate with the world's leading platforms, including:

  • Documentum (Dell)
  • Hyland OnBase & AnyDoc
  • FileBound (Upland)
  • Open Text Oracle (Autonomy)
  • IBM (on-demand and FileNet)
  • Alfresco
  • ImageNow (Perceptive)
  • Kofax
  • and many more.

To help illustrate the versatility and variability of our solutions, let's examine our top 4 ECM offerings. Each of these presents a unique value lever to businesses, and each one has its advantages, disadvantages, and use cases.

1. CloudKeeper

CloudKeeper is a secure, cost-affordable cloud ECM that offers basic ECM capabilities. Not only does CloudKeeper provide a 100% dedicated server for your documents, but it uses best-in-class security policies, compliance guidelines, and disaster recovery strategies. Additionally, we employ highly trained cloud experts that will set up, maintain, and safeguard your data from both physical and digital threats.

This is our budget-friendly ECM. It can store, retrieve, index, and maintain the integrity of your documents. It lacks some of the end-to-end features that our more software-centric solutions like Mercury provide, but it's perfect for businesses looking to quickly migrate and index their documents to a remote server for easy access. For additional capabilities, you can combine CloudKeeper with Mercury ECM to create a holistic document management ecosystem.

Pros

  • Affordable and easy-to-establish
  • Cloud servers are fully-managed by DRS
  • Hyper-secure policies and controls
  • Built-in disaster mitigation and recovery
  • Easy reporting
  • Great for data mining operations
  • Documents are quickly indexed

Cons

  • Lacks SharePoint integrations
  • Not as comprehensive as Mercury ECM
  • Only available as a hosted solution

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2. DocHarbor

DocHarbor is our comprehensive ECM storage solution that primarily acts as a search, retrieve, present, store, and archive tool. This is another fully-hosted solution that relies on robust cloud architecture to safely store your data for quick retrieval. While DocHarbor does have a layer of archiving, it lacks intelligent analysis features, and it doesn't offer SharePoint, Mail, or auto-classification features. Again, this is useful for businesses looking to quickly recognize the benefits of ECM, but it doesn't offer as wide of an umbrella of solutions as Mercury or DocuWare.

Hint: You can use Mercury ECM on your DocHarbor instance.

Pros

  • Hosted using DRS Imaging's world-class cloud infrastructure
  • Superb data storage, security, and compliance capabilities
  • Best-class governance
  • Easy-to-use archiving

Cons

  • No native analysis or ML automation (solved with Mercury)
  • No native auto-classification (solved with Mercury)

3. DocuWare

DRS Imaging and DocuWare have been partners for over two decades. Like DRS, DocuWare develops world-class ECM solutions, and they're major players in the mergers market, so they're constantly adding new flavors to their solutions. The DRS-dedicated DocuWare installation was custom-built to provide our customers with the renowned capabilities of DocuWare and DRS in one package.

We employ DocuWare's incredibly powerful auto-indexing solution in our DocuWare package. The machine-learning capabilities of DocuWare can automatically capture documents and index documents based on user behavior. In addition, the DRS DocuWare package provides compliance, security, transparency, and native integrations with ERPs and CRM tools.

Pros

  • Backed by world-class Docuware auto-indexing and machine learning capabilities
  • Custom-built ECM that provides end-to-end capabilities
  • Best-of-breed compliance and security
  • Plenty of integration options
  • On-premise or cloud-capable

Cons

  • Lacks an intelligent analysis layer without Mercury

4. Mercury

Mercury is our software-driven ECM platform that converges world-class document management with unparalleled compliance, machine learning, and classification software. Not only is Mercury easy to implement, but it works across all storage systems. From S3 buckets to data lakes and cloud servers, Mercury can rally your data into one single classification system for intelligent analysis and speedy retrieval. Mercury analyzes, classifies, migrates, monitors, and reports on data, all from one single pane.

Better yet, Mercury works with any of the solutions above. We often see Mercury combined with our world-class CloudKeeper solution. This provides storage, security, and layers of analysis and governance.

Pros

  • Software-driven and packed with unparalleled machine learning capabilities
  • World-class classification capabilities
  • Superb automated analysis
  • Integration friendly
  • SharePoint integrations and Mail integrations
  • Can handle structured and unstructured data

Cons

  • Is not a storage solution

Which ECM Works Best for Your Business?

With decades of experience, best-in-industry partners, and a variety of business-driven ECM solutions, DRS provides tangible value for your business. Which document management solution makes the most sense for your company? Contact us. We'll suggest an ECM that works best depending on your unique needs. From out-of-the-box to customized solutions, we'll find the perfect fit for you.