There are trends in the technology space, much like in any other area. Last week we attended the Municipal Information Systems Association (MISAC) and experienced interest in one trend: integrations with ECM.
This trend goes back to when business software developers built software to perform every possible business function. Back then, many systems were black boxes––meaning they didn’t talk together. They were purposely not interoperable. Eventually, systems became so bloated, and ISVs (Independent Software Vendors) spent much time on the upkeep of features that weren’t necessarily used.
Business ISVs stopped new feature development, and ECM ISVs started exploring ways to link systems, such as Laserfiche’s push for SDK usage and creating a code library. Some ECM vendors with limited functionality integrated tools that ultimately became the core feature set of ECM, such as capture, records management, analytics, AI, digital signature, and collaboration tools. Forward-looking ISVs encourage the integration of ECM with other critical business systems such as GIS, HRIS, ERP, and CRM.
Documents drive process
Next, organizations grew to appreciate the automation aspects of ECM because, for most agencies, two things are true. Automation can be leveraged to provide digital citizen services, and documents (or forms) drive processes.
Another trend that occurred during this period was measuring the maturity of your ECM deployment. In short, the more customizations, configurations, workflows, and integrations your deployment had, the more mature it was considered. It’s still somewhat of a valid measure.
Today, integrating Laserfiche with other applications remains a metric of ECM maturity. One standard integration is the database lookup, a database integration process aggregating information from multiple sources.CPS clients frequently use database lookups for auto-populating template fields or form fields. One of our clients calls it the game changer.
Another oft-requested integration is between GIS and Laserfiche. The most common GIS application that we encounter is ESRI. Some partners in the Laserfiche Channel have created their own integrations with ESRI. We’ll actually be showing one, DocuNav’s GeoDocs, in our next webinar on December 6th at 11 AM PST. We’ll put up the registration shortly. For now, the integration is between ArcGIS Server and Laserfiche. DocuNav GeoDocs is an enterprise-class Web services tool that unites ESRI ArcGIS Server and Laserfiche. GeoDocs lets users locate critical documents in Laserfiche directly from the ESRI map without searching in Laserfiche. Additionally, users can index and attach documents stored in Laserfiche to the ESRI map by simply right-clicking. Stay tuned for more information.