PiF Technologies

Do your records spark joy? A guide to getting started with document management

The hit Netflix show “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo” began streaming at the beginning of the year, and since then thousands of viewers have taken it upon themselves to KonMari their entire life. One of the tenets of KonMari is simple, you hold up an item, ask yourself if it sparks joy, and if it doesn’t, you get rid of it. Unfortunately, this mindset can’t apply to your document management strategy, if that were the case you’d likely be tossing out every bill and invoice that came through your company’s doors.

BUT by implementing a document management system and being strategic with how you organize your documents, you can find joy in your document management strategy.

Identifying pain points

Consider the following, when thinking of your current content management strategy does your current solution “spark joy” in all these areas? Or does it cause hangups and frustration?

Resource Allocation

Who is involved in your current processes? For example, who receives it, who needs to approve it, what departments does it go through before getting filed away? Passing a pile of paper around the office (or even worse, mailing or faxing it to sites across the country) is inefficient, and slows down the rest of your business processes. By eliminating the need for extra steps you’ll immediately notice employees having time to complete more meaningful tasks.

How to tell if it sparks joy: your employees are completing tasks related to building your business, not completing basic data entry tasks or moving files around between departments.     


Maintaining security is a crucial step in implementing any document management system, both internally and externally. Implementing a document management system that allows for user-based access as well as a secure database means that you don’t have to think about who can see your organization’s important data.

How to tell if it sparks joy: you’re confident that your files can survive any sort of data breach, natural disaster, loss, or other catastrophic event.

Risk Mitigation

Missing or destroyed documents are a huge risk to your organizational success. When moving documents around between departments, or storing them on desks, in filing cabinets, or in various spots around the office you risk losing or damaging them. What many organizations don’t fully realize is that scanned documents, for the most part, are legally accepted. By storing documents electronically you free up time and space and protect your organization.

How to tell if it sparks joy: You know the locations of crucial legal documents and feel confident in your security.

Record Retention Schedule

Your records retention process is ongoing, and understanding how long certain documents need to be kept is crucial for properly organizing your documents. Records Retention and Document Management go hand in hand. If you are storing your documents inefficiently, chances are you’re not destroying records at the right time or worse, you don’t know the location of certain crucial documents. What’s the right schedule? It varies to some degree across industries,ocum but the Better Business Bureau has a good baseline to utilize.

How to tell if it sparks joy: your records retention schedule is consistent and properly utilized by all employees.

Implementing a solution

Often identifying your pain points is significantly easier than determining what the solution is. Document management comes in many forms, physical, off-site storage and destruction, in-house digital storage on your server, free cloud storage, and others. While each of these solutions have their individual benefits, an ECM system is the most benefit-rich and is designed to be a stepping stone towards complete automation.

When you’re implementing a solution, there are some key things to consider before investment, and it’s crucial to ask these questions of the solution provider.

  1. Reliability: You don’t want your system to fail, think about worst-case scenarios for your organization, will this system hold up? Ask questions and talk through emergency procedures to ensure you will trust the solution.
  2. Security: Consider who will be using your system, and who you don’t want to have access to it. What protections will be in place? How will you prevent unauthorized users from getting in?
  3. Defensibility: In the case of an audit or need for proof of compliance, ensure that your ECM clearly documents policies and procedures that drive processes. Support them with clear proof that the organization follows them.

It’s also worth it to look into the features offered and compare them to features you believe would be necessary for the system to be totally effective. Features such as advanced capture, detailed search, automatic assignment to a record retention schedule, audit trails, back up systems, and more are all incredibly important for a solution to thrive.

Once you’ve identified the features and functionality that you want in your system, you can move forward with determining the solution provider. It’s important to find a provider that will perform extensive scoping and training, and has readily available support with live agents.

Utilizing your Solution

After your solution has been implemented, you’re ready to start automating your document processes! But, your process doesn’t end there. Keeping on top of training, updates, and new features is crucial for ensuring long-term success.

The right solution is a stepping stone in automating your entire organization. This means that you can continually build upon it to further streamline your daily processes. By working with a holistically-minded solution provider, you can simply add-on additional solutions as needed without worrying about needing to have a complete system overhaul.

How PiF fits in

As a top-recognized DocStar solution provider, PiF has had over 20 years of experience with providing and implementing document management solutions. Our focus is on building whole-organization solutions using ECM as the jumping off point. We work with your organization to build a solution that fits your individual needs, and our software implementation, training, and support teams help ensure that it’s successful.

Want to learn more about how PiF can help you find joy in your document management strategy? Schedule a demo with us!

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