- Today’s businesses have to send, edit, and update multiple forms and documents.
- 54% of workers say they spend more time looking for files than responding to messages.
- Enterprises are streamlining workflows with flexible, secure document management applications.
Today’s employees rely on digital documents to get their jobs done — from filing an invoice to editing a new business pitch. But actually finding and managing these documents can be challenging. According to a 2021 survey of 1,000 US office workers, 54% said they spent more time searching for files than responding to emails and messages.
And more often than not, documents require input from multiple stakeholders, adding additional delays to an already drawn-out process. For example, a contract agreement between business parties requires a thorough review from the client and vendor. Employees need technology that makes it possible for people inside and outside their organization to efficiently edit documents and collect comments.
Here are a few best practices for organizations looking to level up on their document management.
1. Enable collaboration
Nearly three years into the COVID-19 pandemic, many workers continue to work remotely — with no plans to return to the office full time (or at all). For many organizations, this hybrid approach has paid off. A large percentage of today’s workers are more productive at home. And employers have realized they can attract and retain top talent by expanding hiring efforts to remote employees.
But successfully managing a distributed workforce means ensuring document management applications can support collaboration between employees in multiple places and time zones. For example, Adobe Acrobat is an application that enables people to edit, view, comment on, and approve relevant documents on their own time — regardless of where they are.
Collaborative applications like Acrobat can also help streamline communication with clients and vendors. Giving external stakeholders the opportunity to comment, and the sender the ability to track and respond to these comments, can drive transparency between both parties. This ensures necessary changes are made before the document is finalized and keeps business moving on schedule.
2. Get ahead of security threats
While the distributed workforce has introduced many benefits for employees and companies, it also comes with a number of security risks. With remote workers logging in from various locations and endpoints, the threat landscape has become more complex than it was just a few years ago. By creating guardrails around security, organizations can begin to minimize the risk of a security breach or attack.
However, organizations should also consider the security of their enterprise-wide systems and software as they navigate this evolving threat landscape. That’s especially true for document management applications that are often shared with multiple people across various departments inside and outside an organization.
Acrobat can help secure documents with its protect tool, so only authorized users can view a PDF using a password. This is especially important for documents with sensitive information, such as financial statements with bank account data or employment forms with social security numbers.
3. Encourage flexibility
In a constantly evolving world, today’s business documents are continuously updated with new information. For example, a sales manager might add an addendum to a contract to address a specific client concern. A human resources leader might update an employee handbook with new COVID-19 guidelines. These changes require teams to be flexible and call for document-sharing technology that can undergo multiple iterations.
For example, Acrobat allows users to edit PDFs in many different ways, including changing text and images or deleting pages.
4. Prioritize accessible technology
When different teams and stakeholders need to review a PDF, they should be able to access that document regardless of their device or where they are. For example, an employee on her way to a business meeting may have tucked her computer away in her bag, so she’s fielding emails on her phone. She sees a time-sensitive email requesting her signature on a contract, and she wants to be able to give it a thorough review before she walks into her meeting.
This employee — and others like her — needs a document-management application that’s accessible on any device, whether it’s a computer, tablet, or smartphone.
While employees benefit from easy access to documents, they also must ensure any recipients of these documents can easily access what they need without having to purchase a subscription or download a new application.
By leveraging applications like Acrobat, people can easily edit, e-sign, or access documents from their computer or mobile device. They can also use Acrobat tools online even if they don’t have access to their desktop app, from their web browser and other apps like Microsoft and Google. With document management tools that meet employees, stakeholders, and customers where they are, people can spend less time jumping from app to app and more time completing tasks and transactions that drive their businesses forward.
This post was created by Insider Studios with Adobe.