Enterprise content management (ECM) refers to the collection of strategies, methods and tools used to capture, manage, store, preserve and deliver key organizational process information throughout its lifecycle. ECM has rapidly evolved as different forms of content have been introduced to the work environment. These tools continue to focus on digitally managing a company’s information in a centralized repository. They use digital content to support business processes and help achieve goals.

Enterprise content management does not refer to a single technology or process. It is an umbrella term that describes the combination of methods, tools and strategies that support capturing and managing content, as well as the storage, preservation and delivery of information throughout its lifecycle.

ECM has become increasingly important and complex in recent years. Financial fraud and data breaches have made effective information governance essential not only for compliance reasons. It also helps protect the organization’s reputation. Organizations also need to manage content effectively for integration with business intelligence/business analytics applications that help them to use the available information to guide business decisions.

Both internal and external compliance regulations are getting stricter. With the amount of paperwork and documentation that most companies need to keep, it is incredibly difficult to ensure audits are accurately completed in a timely manner when using legacy business processes such as paper or manual work.

An enterprise content management solution facilitates audits and other compliance requirements. It provides structure and security to the entire audit process, allowing teams to exercise greater control over all relevant documents. Armed with this, organizations can create efficiency within their internal processes and subsequently reduce expenses associated with manual operations.