We’ve all heard the adage, you need to be able to crawl before you can walk and before you can run, and eventually cartwheel. The same can apply to Content Management for the Enterprise. At Zia, we help a variety of customers who are all at different levels within this maturity model. For some customers, it makes sense for them to stay at a specific level. For others, they need to improve. Zia can help assess your current state, discuss with you your desires for a future state, and put in place an action plan to help you achieve these goals.  

Firstly, let’s discuss the potential stages. We’ll show you signs of each stage so that you can self-assess where your organization or department currently resides.

Our Content Management Maturity Model has several stages:

  1. Baseline
  2. Repeatable
  3. Established
  4. Managed
  5. Enhancing

1. Baseline

This is the starting point of any organization or department. Some may call it the “wild west.” Your content environment is unstable because your documents are in a variety of formats. This includes physical paper as well. There is very little organization of these documents. You may rely on a leader within your organization who knows where things are or how they’re “organized.” If that person isn’t around—temporarily or permanently—it has a major impact on your customers and their satisfaction. The good news: there’s nowhere to go but up!

This is what you do currently:

  1. Multiple ways of ingesting documents (physical mail, e-mail, fax, electronic form submissions)
  2. Have trouble finding documents, or unsure of which version to use
  3. Customers have to provide the same document multiple times
  4. Processes dictated by the technology that’s established
  5. Shadow IT: In big organizations, shadow IT refers to information technology systems deployed by departments other than the central IT department, to work around the shortcomings of the central information systems
  6. Processes do not scale during busy times

You do those things because these qualities exist in your department or organization:

  1. Tasks are often handled ad-hoc
  2. The flow of your work varies depending on how busy your organization is, it isn’t consistent every time
  3. Documents are stored or filed differently at different times
  4. There’s no way to tell which version is the most current of a document
  5. There are often duplicate copies of the same document or data

Why You Should Want to Improve: It’s Negatively Impacting your Customers

Your customer perceives you as “not easy to do business with.” You better have a great funnel to bring in new customers because you won’t be getting a lot of repeat business.

 

How to improve and move to the next stage from here:

Use a common storage medium: if you can make all of your files digital, do that. Then store them all on a shared network drive or a cloud storage service such as BOX. Work with your team to establish a consistent filing system and flow of work. Document these processes. Store the process in a place where everyone can reference it and follow the rules.

 

2. Repeatable

You have some automated processes across your organization or within your departments. Likely, different departments are utilizing different systems. At least they’re somewhat organized and provide a common experience to the customer. Also, there is at least one person in a department who monitors and actively tries to improve the systems you have. 

This is what you do currently:

  1. Multiple ways of ingesting documents (physical mail, e-mail, fax, electronic form submissions)
  2. Your organization starts utilizing a shared repository to store documents electronically
  3. Simple workflows take place, mostly electronically
  4. Your organization is starting to utilize metadata to help tag and help with the search and retrieval of documents

You do those things because these qualities exist in your department or organization:

  1. A mix of manual and automated processes
  2. Not everyone is adopting or they cannot adopt electronic storage of documents

Why You Should Want to Improve: There’s a Disconnect Between Business Users and IT

There’s “shadow IT” within your organization coming from your business users. Your IT department isn’t able to keep up with the demand of your business users. They find new ways to get things done. While they may be more efficient in delivering for your customer, they’re creating other headaches by utilizing systems that aren’t supported by your larger IT organization.

How to improve and move to the next stage from here:

Your organization is going to need to establish a liaison between business users and IT. This person speaks both “languages” of both departments fluently. They serve as an advocate for both sides. The leadership of this individual or team of individuals will drive change and process improvement within your organization. 

3. Established

You’re set up to compete in today’s modern environment. The Content Management strategy that you’ve setup at this point is ready to scale and take your business to the next level. This stage means that your organization establishes and enforces a common standard for documents and processes from top to bottom.

This is what you do currently:

  1. Multiple ways of ingesting documents (physical mail, e-mail, fax, electronic form submissions)
  2. Your organization and department rationalizes systems by thinking about how they fit into the Content Management Strategy
  3. Individuals aren’t using “Shadow IT” to get tasks done, they have established systems
  4. Ad-Hoc Work doesn’t exist, there are established workflow systems to achieve all results
  5. There is a proactive approach to reviewing and analyzing current business processes to find improvement

You do those things because these qualities exist in your department or organization:

  1. Well established processes understood by everyone
  2. Your teams have established standards & process descriptions
  3. Consolidated systems and processes
  4. Able to efficiently manage, find and search for documents
  5. Reporting systems to monitor and control processes along with workload monitoring

Why You Should Want to Improve: Quantity over Quality

Your processes are only measurable by if tasks are completed or not, not by the quality of the work done in those processes.

How to improve and move to the next stage from here:  

You need to change your focus from documents and processes to data focused. This is often the hardest stage to graduate from as interpreting data can be difficult. There are multiple ways to interpret data and taking action on data that’s been misinterpreted can be damaging to your business. However, taking the correct action based on data can be transformative to your business.

4. Managed

Your organization is a highly-controlled environment. You’re able to manipulate business processes and change the way that you manage and collect the inputs of your business. This allows you to provide higher quality outputs of your business. 

This is what you do currently:

  1. Your customer experiences are mostly consistent
  2. There are very few unrecognized or unattended requests
  3. The right people have the right work in front of them at the right times
  4. The standards that you hold for your content extend across your entire organization

You do those things because these qualities exist in your department or organization:

  1. You have automated methods for ingesting content, documents and data
  2. You have automated workflow for processing content, documents and data
  3. Your content is easy to find because of automatically associated meta-data
  4. You’re have established reporting on your systems that provides real insight that needs little interpretation
  5. Your employees utilize little to no manual workarounds in their processes

Why You Should Want to Improve: Business Interruptions Require Workarounds

You see business interruptions in your reporting, but you’re unable to determine the causes. You have no way to simulate your processes and test for what’s causing the interruptions.

How to improve and move to the next stage from here: 

Apply data and quantitative metrics to your content management plan. This may include integrating into line-of-business applications with plug-ins or adding new technologies to better quantify what you’re doing.

 

5. Enhancing

You are at the stage now where you’re proactive and not reactive. You’re able to simulate changes to your processes before you promote them to production.

This is what you do currently:

  1. Your organization has predictable methods and processes that provide feedback on how to improve
  2. Your organization has a team that actively simulates potential changes and plans for the future

You do those things because these qualities exist in your organization:

  1. Processes that are automated
  2. Proactive thinking and strategies
  3. A focus on efficiency and a means to measure it

 

Why You Should Want to Improve: New Technologies

This is our last documented stage, but there will always be new technologies and methods that come along that will provide new insights.

 

What can you do next?

Work with the team at Zia. We integrate best in breed technologies to help you graduate from your current stage and start planning for the next. Check out our library of webinars, peruse our blog, or contact us today for a discovery call.

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