What is the main characteristic of Über, AirBnB and Delivery Hero?
They are the leading service providers in their field, and yet Über as the world’s largest taxi company with an estimated amount of over 350,000 drivers worldwide, and yet they own no cars, AirBnB is the leading accommodation provider with over 1 million available listings worldwide, and yet owns no accommodations and Delivery hero has over 200,000 restaurants and yet operates none of them.
Now what do these companies have in common? They utilise an existing infrastructure to bring services closer to people in a reliable way while the “only” thing they do is offer a single point of contact for the customers to bring together supply and demand. The same is with Momondo, Trivago and so on. In other words the great benefit of those services is making the existing infrastructure easily available to anyone.
Now what does this have to do with Document Management? The point is the infrastructure already exists to store documents, in fact it exists so much that we struggle with the amount of documents we have. A quick survey I conducted earlier this year to tens of IT Managers and CIO’s proved my assumptions correct – over 85% of companies have a challenge with their documentation being spread, and with the inconsistency of documents produced.
We have all encountered the challenge of finding the newest version of a template, or “where did I save that document?”. You have your intranet where you should share all important documents, your local server, cloud services and of course your ERP and CRM systems and hahaa! don’t forget your document management system which is great for managing your documents as long as you store them in that system… Everyone has created a great application to find your documentation – there is a but hidden here – in their own system. Do you really think Microsoft will put a lot of effort to enable you to use Google Docs? We are again in the situation where every supplier of software and services has its own castle in which everything works great. Apple started this trend of having closed systems with market places, and it works great, as long as you remain inside the bubble created for you.
Now we get to the interesting part – document quality. We have the data, we have the templates, we have the guidelines, and we have the humans… The more humans we have, the more ways we have to create an offer, a report or a template. On the other hand if we automate everything we lose our biggest asset- the human “fuzzy” logic to understand what we need to have in the document we produce.
Getting back to Über and their likes, what we have done at Documill is enabling you to utilise your existing infrastructure by connecting your different repositories and enabling you to see all relevant documentation (for example all documents related to an account in your CRM) and search across different repositories with a single interface which utilises your Salesforce, SharePoint and/or Confluence user interface. This results in no new systems for your users to learn, no new applications to install. On top of this we are able to bring all relevant data you have in your CRM and other sources into an MS Word document, making sure you have accurate data but also enabling you to manually optimise your document if needed.