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You are missing out
if you don’t have
a document strategy!
Most companies work with strategies... HR strategies, financial strategies, marketing strategies. But only the rare few put much effort into developing a document strategy.
Why should you consider having a document strategy?
Humans are capable of many things, but we need help from objects to transfer knowledge between each other. Thousands of years old cave paintings have enabled us to understand how life was at that time.
The corner stone in knowledge work is that employees need tools to transfer knowledge between each other. Documents are used to transfer knowledge and create value by helping us understand each other. Bearing that in mind, it stands clear that documents are the cave paintings of 2021 (make sure to note that you heard it here first).
95 % use Microsoft Office as their tool to create documents (Market Analysis, Epinion 2017) and many companies take for granted that their employees know how to work with Word, PowerPoint, Excel and Outlook. After all, we have been exposed to these tools throughout our educations and careers. But ask yourself whether you have ever really been taught how to use them.
Our experience at SkabelonDesign tells us that it can be faulty to have this presumption. Just as organizations focus on optimizing operations for different areas of their business, we believe that resources should be set aside for document optimization.
By acknowledging that there are measures to be taken within the world of documents and setting aside resources to investigate your organization’s specific needs, you could be looking at potentially big productivity improvements.
And why not help the employees focus on what they do best? When communication flows unhindered, employees have more time for their actual job and to nourish their passion. That is the core of SkabelonDesign’s business. We do our best to identify your specific needs in the process of creating a document strategy, selecting unique software solutions and anchoring the tools in your organization.
If it seems difficult, unmanageable and a bit of a mouthful, go and find some professionals who can help you. You won’t regret getting your document strategy in place, when you experience the output and effect.
What is a document strategy?
Having a document strategy means taking a stand towards your organizational use of documents and deciding that things need to change. And not just document management, but the whole sphere surrounding the document journey.
Margrethe Hald Mortensen is working as a Consultant at SkabelonDesign, and she has great expertise and experience in helping companies with insights, change and adoption. Margrethe has gathered six elements that will help your company in creation, integration and adoption of your new document strategy. The elements are as follows; templates, assets, distribution, training, communication, and expectations.
1. Templates are the platform
Templates are the center of it all. But left alone, and not accompanied by the other five elements of document management, they are useless. What good is a world class template, if you have no distribution system, or forget to communicate to your employees that you expect them to work with templates?
2. Assets are the “easy way in”
Using assets is the easy way to obtain both your brand and productivity advantage, when accompanied by a central distribution system.
Assets is the easy way to get your users to like and see the advantages of your document management activities. All people working in MS office can use assets – weather it is simply images or icons supporting brand, or models and text elements increasing productivity.
3. Distribution is unavoidable
Here the chicken-and-hen metaphoric is highly relevant. Templates are useless without distribution, and distribution is impossible without templates. You need both to obtain success.
But distribution is key. If it is not easy to access templates and assets for your users, then why even bother spending energy developing the content. At SkabelonDesign, we know that it needs to be easy to locate your assets and templates. And we have the tools to get you there – you will have it directly in your MS Office application.
4. Training is necessary
You and your employees are all Word and Excel experts in your resume. You have all worked with the MS Office applications, since you were in school. Does that make you experts? Do you know what you are doing?
Experience tells us that you are often not aware of the enormous opportunities Microsoft Office holds for you and your organization. But with training initiatives, it is possible to improve your organization’s level in MS Office.
Our recommendation will always be to prioritize training in both basic MS office features and training in templates and assets specific for your organization.
5. Communication is your chance for perfection
Spreading the word is quite important… Otherwise, who will know that your templates and assets exist? Communicate widely and tell your employees all about the advantages and the different aspects of documents. Here are a few steps to follow:
- Tell them where to find the templates.
- Tell them how they work.
- Tell them why it is important to use them.
- Tell them that you expect feedback and requirements to new developments.
6. Expectations are the fulfillment of your goal
And finally, bullet #4 in the above takes us closer to letting you know about the importance of communicating your expectations. Make sure to focus your communication on the expectations you have about your employees’ use of templates/assets.
Underline why it is important that they make an effort and make your employees understand the benefits and value of this process on both a personal and an organizational level.
When should you start?
If you want to raise your productivity, upgrade your competitiveness and boost your employees’ job satisfaction, you must take your document strategy seriously.
Please use this guide to understand the benefits, share it with your colleagues and reach out to experts if you have any concerns or questions.
It’s never too early (or late) to get started.
Curious to learn more? Margrethe Hald Mortensen is always on the dot to answer your questions.
Sources: “Market Analysis” (Epinion 2017), “The Total Economic Impact™ Of Templafy” (Forrester 2019),