According to consulting firm IDC, the amount of data created by organizations will nearly triple by 2023, with 80 percent of that data unstructured–a sizable increase to an already overwhelming amount of content. With companies feeling little reprieve from the tight grip of compliance requirements which only seem to be tightening, looking to the future can be disheartening.
Modern organizations are setting their sights on new technologies to optimize compliance management processes, from information management capabilities to enhanced automation. Emerging AI and machine learning technologies are an indication of the direction in which enterprise content management (ECM) is headed, with companies already leveraging new compliance streamlining capabilities.
Yet despite having access to these technologies, organizations still face challenges with compliance management and information management in general.
Unrelenting ECM Challenges
Organizations and compliance officers specifically are continuously pressured by the ever-evolving nature of compliance regulations with the constant introduction of new laws and requirements. Achieving continuous compliance is an ongoing battle that ceases to resolve so long as businesses continue to accumulate new information.
Only exacerbated by the rise of the remote enterprise, organizations continue to leverage multiple systems to store data and deploy new ad-hoc solutions to meet user demands. With disconnected systems working independently from one another, data workers and compliance officers spend valuable time locating and accessing information and data for reporting and compliance requirements.
Residual manual processes and reliance on the diligence of individual users pose a significant risk to the safety of confidential information. The risk of human error increases, as does the likelihood that employees are working on outdated documents, resulting in inaccurate audits and reporting.
This poses an impending threat to the content lifecycle while requiring additional time and resources to verify the accuracy of data. Not to mention, organizations and compliance teams may end up making decisions based on potentially outdated or inaccurate information.
How Can ECM Compliance Progress?
ECM compliance is by no means a small-scale issue. New content management solutions continue to emerge with a goal to simplify and streamline information management processes. While aiding to some degree, ECM solutions fail to provide a simplified, comprehensive approach to compliance management, particularly due to the growing amounts of content and an increasingly vast range of file types. The lack of advanced automation and compatibility with multiple or mobile devices leaves room for improvement.
The Future of Compliance is Technology-enabled
Organizations are looking more and more to technology to help manage and strengthen their compliance. Where ECM falls short, processes enhanced by AI and machine learning are stepping up to the mark.
Organizations are leveraging artificial intelligence now more than ever to make sense of their disjointed, unstructured data. AI is allowing businesses to perform sophisticated analyses and detect potential anomalies in information – a step that helps mitigate various compliance risks, especially those associated with human error. These approaches offer significant possibilities for the future of ECM.
Organizations conduct audits to find content and processes that violate various compliance requirements. Corporate or customer information containing sensitive data such as Personally identifiable information (PII) has to be handled with extreme care when stored in ECM systems or shared for collaboration purposes. AI provides the ability to automatically search and locate sensitive information and redact even the most challenging data without human intervention or configuration. Compliance managers can set specific parameters to indicate what content or behavior should be detected, such as social security numbers, phone numbers, email, etc. — providing greater control over content security.
Greater Organization & Task Automation
Businesses face the significant challenge of allocating and managing resources to locate, update, and classify content manually. Employees spend considerable time working with data and conducting repetitive tasks. Automation of certain tasks including document routing, image classification, document classification, and object recognition or optical character recognition (OCR) are just some of the more recent capabilities designed to help organizations save valuable time. Robotic process automation (RPA) can be introduced into ECM systems for enterprise-wide automation, reducing time spent on information acquisition and improving data quality.
Optimized Enterprise Search
Manually searching for content across multiple systems is as time-consuming as it is unreliable, especially when dealing with exorbitant volumes of data and documents. Machine learning can take this data and organize it into shared locations such as customers, processes, file type, tasks, etc. Users then know where to look for information and can cut down on information acquisition time.
Optimized Content Viewing
Web-based content viewing technology helps streamline access to information and documents, regardless of where they physically reside, or the type of file format. This approach not only eliminates time and resources lost downloading files and opening them in their native applications but also prevents security vulnerabilities by consolidating content access, leveraging advanced streaming technology.
Cloud-based content viewing solutions like ARender offer advanced, inbred compliance management capabilities including automated redaction, centralized security controls and users’ rights management, along with complete audit trails and reporting. This solution, which integrates with any ECM system and sits on top of your existing infrastructure, offers endless opportunities for further automation and enhancements using AI or other technologies.
Looking Future Forward
As we’ve seen, the ideal remedy to many compliance challenges is a single solution that can consolidate security controls to eliminate inconsistencies and ensure the safety of sensitive customer data, all while preserving content integrity. ARender's web-based universal content viewer enables compliance managers to consolidate security controls, redact confidential information with ease, and trace document updates while maintaining content integrity. Modern technologies like AI and machine learning provide an opportunity to enhance these features and offer even more value for effective compliance management.