Following my reading of Investing in Enterprise Content Management Is Investing in The Future by Andre W. KLEIN, I noticed that the ECM’s ROI put forward by Andre maybe are not the only ones.
Another hidden ECM’s ROI that not many people are talking about is an undercover task of the ECM.
This was confirmed by reading Christiène BRANCIER‘s article No Business strategy without data quality ! where I discovered, with the help of an Experian’s survey,  that :
  • 84% of the organizations surveyed worldwide think that data is absolutely essential for devising a business strategy!
  • 90% of businesses globally suspect that their databases contain errors.
Thanks to these facts I am reminded of two of the projects I have worked on.
A long time ago, I was working with an ECM / BPM platform to manage account opening triggered by incoming paper documents for an online Dutch Bank.
It was also the first time I was really getting a handson experience on  a structured Information System servicing most of their information needs.
These workflows were directly connected to Information Systems (IS) where they used to pick data and other information.
With time the process evolved and I noticed that the data were improved using the process itself by:
  • Correcting bad manual input : for example in French a “e” instead of a “é”
  • Classifying and tagging information : for example put the correct classes for documents
  • Updating old values : for example a wrong place of birth or address
  • Etc, etc
Recently, I worked on a Case Management solution that is managing customers and internal requests for a French Bank.
The problem in this case was that because of different causes, data from the IS were not as clean as they should be.
In these two projects we improved the data structure of Information System and values with the help of ECM including Case Management solution.
That’s the hidden ROI !
The ECM or Case Management platform is working for you in the shadow.

ECM is cleaning your data for you to get a better data quality

When you pass your Information System’s data through an ECM platform, because of business processes that you have implemented, it gives you the opportunity to really improve your corporate data.
Post this your information will be corrected and adapted with the help of your real life business workflows through consume data and then send them back to IS.
In other words we have the following virtuous circle :