5 Digital Document Management Tips To Drive Revenue

 In All Things Productivity, Blog

binary-1607196_640The modern enterprise is inundated with documents. Marketing teams create an abundance of content as do Sales – whose reliance on content is often overlooked. In fact, research has shown that Sales actually creates more content than Marketing.

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One of the main reasons behind this surprising fact is the evolution of the modern buyer who now expects to be presented with tailored materials when meeting with reps. Because so much of the content marketing produces gets mislaid or is not suitable for the unique selling situations reps encounter, Sales ends up producing a lot of their own materials. IDC found that as much as 80% of marketing content was going unused by Sales.

The “can’t find that file” issue is also problematic.

  • Knowledge professionals spend 5-15% of their time reading information, but up to 50% looking for it.
  • According to IDC research, 36% of employees’ days are spent looking for and consolidating information, and 44% of the time employees can’t find the information they need to do their jobs.
  • A typical enterprise with 1,000 knowledge workers wastes $5.5 million – $9.5 million per year:
    • Searching for nonexistent information
    • Failing to find existing information
    • Recreating information that can’t be found

The reality is that all these inefficiencies come about as a direct result of failures in document management. While these issues have become relatively commonplace in the modern enterprise, it doesn’t have to be this way. When it comes to digital document management, there are a number of tips, tactics, processes and tools you can implement that will both eliminate efficiencies at your organization and make your Sales team more effective. The following five part plan can help to transform digital document management at your company.

1. Forget About A Centralized Repository

File Server ReplacementThere are so many vendors in the digital document management space who claim they can solve your content inefficiencies. Unfortunately, the vast majority of them are deluded. Any solution based on the idea of a magic, centralized location for all enterprise content has no hope of succeeding.

Content storage today is heterogeneous. Your digital documents are already stored across a range of enterprise locations like file servers, cloud storage, email, CRM, company wikis, and intranets. On average, B2B companies have 17 different repositories for storing their sales content. Now, think about all the manual work involved in gathering all the content from the 17 different locations and uploading it to your new document management solution. It is absolutely outrageous and it is not a one-time thing either. You will have to manually upload and maintain the latest versions of all your digital documents.

2. Pay Heed To Workflows

mark-516277_640As you search for a new digital document management solution, you should consider how any new solution might affect your team’s workflow. Workflows are the tools, processes, and interactions employees use to accomplish their jobs. If a new document management solution requires your team to change the way they work and the tools they are most comfortable with, then there is every chance adoption rates will suffer.

For example, many digital document management vendors will claim they can offer analytics on how your digital documents are being used and how they perform. However, in many cases, these solutions can only provide analytics on the activity that takes place within the walled garden of their own solution. For this type of analytics to be effective within your organization, it would mean massive disruption to your employee’s workflows who would no longer be able to email content to prospects if they wanted to keep track of how their digital documents perform in their new solution.

Essentially, you need a digital document management solution that integrates with all key enterprise tools and processes and is able to scale while the personnel and workflows around it constantly change.

3. Ease of Use is Key

anger-477044_640To succeed today, enterprise software must be intuitive and easy to use. Consumer tools like those developed by Google and Apple have raised the bar in terms of usability and enterprise solutions have had to follow suit. Employees expect that the tools they use at work will be as easy to use as Google and other similar tools. Complex enterprise tools that do not meet stand up to these expectations will fail in terms of user adoption.

4. Seek and You Will Find

search-1013911_640For a digital document management solution to succeed today, it must take a leaf out of the enterprise search playbook. As we have already stated, it is unrealistic to expect all your documents to get stored in the one place. Instead, you should look towards digital document management solutions that layer over all your content repositories and provide your team with a single access point for all enterprise content.

This is the only type of solution that can solve your document inefficiencies. Once you have a solution that indexes all your content repositories, you are half way there. Search functionality is now absolutely key. Ideally, you should provide your teams with a google-like search tool that indexes your documents right down to the page level. Name-based searching is no longer sufficient. The volume of content that enterprises store today means it is highly unlikely that users will remember the name of each and every file. Instead, page-based search functionality allows users to surface the exact phrase, slide, or page that suits their specific situation.

5. Leverage Artificial Intelligence For Content Recommendations

system-571182_640There are so many elements to consider in any one deal today: company size, deal stage, use case, industry, geographic location, product type, competitors, legal and contractual requirements, and key stakeholders all must be considered. Once you understand the Product of all the inputs that go into a deal the permutations become infinite and, as a result, it can be difficult to choose the most suitable document to present to prospects.

Some experts will tell you that you should develop buyer personas for each of your target buyers and prescribe content for each persona. The problem with buyer personas is that they are fictional and have no clear relationship to real customer data and therefore cannot be considered scientific.

Instead, you should look to document management solutions that leverage artificial intelligence and machine learning to help you choose the right document for the right sales situation. Following the lead of companies like Amazon who have developed algorithms that recommend related products to website visitors, the leading digital document management solutions have developed their own algorithm that provides content recommendations to reps based on inputs like search history, deal size, deal stage, industry, and past content performance. The results being reps are proactively presented with the right information at the right time to close a deal.

At leading enterprises today, digital document management has moved from tactical to strategic. Effective digital document management solutions that can help you to implement the tips laid out in our guide will not only eliminate efficiencies but also help to drive revenue at your company.

 

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