In last week's blog post we started outlining the most important technical questions to ask before buying software to manage data sets . Understanding the technical aspects of the solution in advance helps avoid frustrations and disappointments later.
Our first questions were about various factors including:
- the provider itself (how long have they been around, who are their customers?)
- updates (How often are they carried out, do they cost extra?)
- Training and support (what does this mean, what are the support standards?)
- Compatibility (with other software, hardware – and network resources).
We will complete our list with five further technical factors to be examined.
- Data backup, import and export The records management software records and stores a lot of data. It is important to understand how data is brought into the system and how it can be extracted from the system. When importing data, check whether the system can allow a “batch import” of data set data (e.g. by uploading a CSV file). Can it also connect directly to other software to import records created in these systems? These types of functionality can be very important, especially if a lot of your records are created in other software tools (such as lending systems or invoicing systems). Also, make sure you figure out how to back up data. Does the software automatically create backups? Where are these backups stored? Can you export data yourself, whether for backup or use in other systems?
- Security and Disaster Recovery Offers for records management software with sensitive company and customer records, which makes security a very important part of the technical Discussion makes. Make sure you have a clear understanding of the various security features available with the software. This includes features such as server security protocols, user privilege levels, and enforced password strength. Also, find out if the provider has a disaster recovery plan and what it includes. You want to be sure that the software is available in the event of an emergency or disaster.
- Workstation Requirements For end users and administrators alike, ask about workstation computer requirements. Which hardware, operating systems or other software are required? Be as specific as possible. For example, the records management software may only be compatible with certain versions of the Internet browsing software.
- Storage Devices Also Digital File Storage This is an important consideration, especially if you want to capture and store many document images. Most records management software is compatible with a wide variety of storage devices. Find out what your provider recommends in terms of minimum storage capacity and preferred formats. This should take into account your unique business needs and your intended use of the system. For example, you will need much more storage capacity if you are collecting and storing large detailed files such as architectural or construction drawings. Also note all legal requirements. In some industries, such as banking, regulators require that certain types of records be stored in certain formats, such as: B. Write-Once, Read-Many (WORM). Make sure the software supports these mandatory formats.
- Print and scan devices Of course you want to be sure that the RM software works Compatible with all existing printers and imaging devices. These can be:
It is best to ask the software manufacturer for a complete list of compatible printers and scanners. That way, if you decide to buy from another manufacturer, you know in advance that your software is compatible with it.
As our two articles have shown, there is a lot to consider the technical side of the RM software. Any good provider should be able to provide answers quickly and work with you to resolve any potential problems you discover. The earlier you start the conversation, the better!