Today we talk about document management with Rafael Cid Rodriguez , president of the Andalusian Association of Information and Documentation Professionals (AAPID) and professor of New Technologies in the Access and Use of Bibliographic and Documentary Information in the University Master’s Degree in Documents and Books, Archives and Libraries, at the University of Seville.
1-How important is document management today for companies? Do they all require a document management system?
Actually , document management in the business world is not something new. All companies have important documentation that must be kept from the moment of their incorporation. In addition, the law also requires it. However, in recent years, and especially as a result of the emergence of new information and communication technologies, the volume of documentation has grown enormously, as has its formats. Not only are paper documents considered, but electronic documents are also present. All this demands a specialized and increasingly professional treatment, and this is where the figure of the documentalist has a place and becomes necessary when it comes to organizing, managing and retrieving information. This need to have controlled and localized documentation is essential for the business world.
2- Is it only suitable for large companies?
Not at all. Spain is a country of SMEs, and good documentation management is always a competitive advantage for any type of company and in all areas. Obviously, there are various possibilities depending on the needs of each company. Depending on the volume of work, you can hire a documentation expert, create a department in the company itself, or you can use a document management and custody company.
3- How much does it cost to have document management?
Many times the question is how much is lost by not having it. Speaking of this subject, the example of a well-known Spanish fuel company that, at a given moment, could not locate the title deeds of many of its service stations always comes to mind. In short, as I said before, each type of company has specific needs in relation to information and documentation management, and the benefits of a good organization are many.
4- Is it safe to have documents in document management?
Well, we are talking about an experienced professional sector, which has a specific academic degree, and numerous professional associations and colleges that deal, among other things, with professional retraining. As a result of all this, in Spain there are very good documentation professionals who know their work well and who know that preserving and conserving documentation is a first-order aspect.
Not only are paper documents considered, but electronic documents are also present
5- If you had to say just one, what is the greatest advantage of document management?
Depending on the work environment in which we place ourselves, the advantages of good document management can be several. Perhaps in the business world we could point out that being able to retrieve information at a given time would be the greatest advantage of document management.
6- And the biggest drawback?
Perhaps to make the business sector, and especially SMEs, aware of the need to have documentation professionals.
7- Where do you think the future of the sector lies?
Well, I think that the future is already here, and it is none other than electronic administration. More and more procedures are carried out electronically and this generates a new type of document that needs to be managed. Nor should we forget the importance of digitizing documents, thinking above all of conservation and reducing the volume of space occupied by documents. Undoubtedly, the future of documentalists will be largely related to document management in the business field.
8- What challenges do you think it will face in the medium term?
I think that the digital environment and the Internet will set the guidelines to follow and that documentation professionals must be prepared to face the changes that are coming.
The future of documentalists will be largely related to document management in the business field
9- A wish for the future of the sector…
A documentarian in each company!