Worldwide, organizations have been increasingly digitizing their documents. The purposes could range from cost saving and efficiency to sustainability. No matter what, document standardization is essential for any organization’s scale and goal. Some organizations have already implemented document standardization at the workplace with either a document numbering procedure or document templates. But are these all you can do? What else can you optimize? This blog post will discuss other practices you can consider for your organization and the benefits.
What is document standardization?
Document standardization is not only limited to establishing and maintaining consistent formats and terminologies. It also refers to procedures for creating, editing, and storing documents. The goal is to ensure that all documents produced by an organization are clear, consistent, and easy to understand. Moreover, the rounded standardization leads to a more effective, efficient, and satisfied workplace.
Benefits of document standardization
The entire process of document standardization could be long and exhausting. However, it’s worth it when the organization puts effort into planning and implementing document standardization. Those efforts lead to an efficient, effective, and satisfied workplace by providing the following benefits:.
- Increased efficiency: Standardizing how to create, edit, and store documents can help reduce errors, save time, and improve the overall efficiency of document processes.
- Reduced confusion and frustration: By establishing clear guidelines for document creation, editing, and storage, employees no longer have to waste time searching for or figuring out how to format documents.
- Better document management: Document standardization properly organizes all documents. It makes retrieving documents easier, secures access control, and improves overall document management.
Best practices for document standardization
1. Define the scope and purpose
Before starting the document standardization process, the team should clearly define the scope of the effort. This also includes what types of documents are involved. Good planning ensures that everyone involved in the process has a shared understanding of the goals and objectives.
2. Develop a set of standards
At this step, the organization will create templates, guidelines, and best practices for document creation, editing, and storage. It is essential to involve all relevant stakeholders in developing these document standards to ensure that the established standards are practical among all stakeholders.
3. Establish document control procedures
This includes procedures for version/revision control, approval processes, and security measures to ensure that only authorized individuals can access and modify documents.
4. Communicate to employees
Communication ensures that all employees understand the purpose and importance of document standardization and know how to comply with the new standards. The organization may provide training sessions, online courses, and written instructions.
5. Implement the standards
Start using the standardized document templates, guidelines, and procedures. It is essential to ensure that everyone within the organization uses the same formats, terminologies, and procedures.
6. Mornitor and evaluate
Regularly review the standards and procedures to ensure they are effective and make changes as necessary. The organization can do this by conducting surveys, reviewing metrics, and gathering employee feedback.
7. Maintain the standardization
Following the implementation and evaluation process, the organization should monitor compliance and provide support to maintain the standards. In addition, we recommend having an annual review and standards update. This help sustain your effort.
Is it possible to automate document standardization?
Yes, it is possible! Many organizations automate parts of their document standardization with a document management system (DMS). Due to automation, the organization can streamline the documentation process and ensure that the stakeholders consistently apply the standards to all documents. These are the example of how DMS can facilitate your document standardization:
- Ensure version control: The DMS can keep track of multiple versions of a document, allowing employees to access the latest version and ensuring that only approved versions/revisions are made available.
- Streamline document review & approval: The DMS can automate the document review & approval process, ensuring that the relevant stakeholders review and approve all documents on time.
- Improve document accessibility: The DMS can provide a centralized document repository, making it easier for stakeholders to access and retrieve the document they need.
Assai’s document management system
At Assai, we take pride in offering the best document control and document management system for complex projects and operations in the market. Assai’s cloud-based document management system stores all your items in a central repository equipped with easy and comprehensive search options on metadata and content for documents, drawings, correspondence, emails, and more. The system enables organizations to integrate with tools that fit their requirements, such as Power BI. Also, version control and redlining are a breeze with Assai.
We offer a system that meets different industries’ needs, including Oil & Gas, Renewable Energy, Construction & Engineering, Transportation, Mining, and Utilities. Our user-friendly, secure, and scalable solutions come with expert support and training. Check it out on our site, and feel free to book a demo!
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