Enterprise Content Management
AN IT MANAGEMENT TERM that was not that common before the early years of this century, enterprise content management (ECM) describes the strategies, methods, and tools used to capture, manage, store, preserve, and deliver the content and documents related to organizational processes. Now a fast-growing set of IT activities, ECM is the series of processes covering the management of information within the entire scope of an enterprise no matter whether that information is in the form of a paper document, an electronic file, a database print stream, e-mail documents, data stored in an IT cloud, or any of the many other evolving forms of data and information. ECM processes are primarily aimed at managing the life cycle of information from initial publication or creation all the way through archiving and eventual disposal.
ECM aims to make the management of corporate information and its supporting documents easier through simplifying storage, security, version control, process routing, and retention. The benefits to an enterprise using effective ECM processes include improved efficiencies, better controls, and reduced costs. For example, most banks today now have converted to using ECM processes to store paper copies of old checks versus the older method of keeping physical checks in massive paper warehouses. Under older, traditional systems, a customer request for a copy of a check might take weeks, as the bank employees had to contact ...