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Integration of document management software and Teams

Ana Canteli

Written by Ana Canteli on 3 June 2022

We have many applications to guarantee collaboration with clients, between users, employees, and teams in a globalized and increasingly virtualized reality. Perhaps initially, these were only conceived as one more communication channel. Still, due to their popularity or out of necessity, more and more people incorporate them into their professional lives. One of these collaborative tools is Teams.

The trend to work from home has only increased its relevance and presence in the workplace, making MS Teams the application chosen by many organizations to improve collaboration in the company, both internally and in their relationships. With external agents, including public administrations.

With Teams, users can improve collaboration by making it possible to track chats, emails, calendars, projects, etc. However, it has some structural limitations that can be overcome thanks to the integration of Microsoft Teams with document management solutions. The most obvious is usually SharePoint, the document management platform offered by Microsoft. With SharePoint Online, Teams users can manage the most common document types such as Word, Excel, or PowerPoint. It is possible to create folders to store documents in the rest of the applications of the Microsoft ecosystem, which would ultimately be stored in SharePoint Online.

But the workflow between MS Teams and SharePoint is interrupted since there is no relationship between the Microsoft SharePoint security policy and the applications used by the users. To solve it, it is necessary to integrate the permissions required to perform document management tasks.

Most of the information shared and stored in Teams are documents. The application is subdivided into a multitude of channels. Each communication channel creates a folder connected to the document library in Microsoft SharePoint. That's where the FilesTab button in Teams takes you. The absence of an integrated browsing experience makes it difficult to visualize an integrated document repository and understand the set of documents with which a group of users has to work, leading to errors such as duplication of documents or loss of relevant information. In fact, for some document management specialists, the main flaw in Microsoft Teams is the poor experience it offers when searching for information and finding it quickly.

Another drawback of using MS Teams in conjunction with Microsoft SharePoint is that the archive and retention policy is spread across all of Microsoft's Office 365 applications. This means that to overcome the limitations of the archive plan, an organization requires integration with another application to solve this problem. But the most prominent challenge end-user faces is knowing how to act in an increasingly sophisticated work environment: When to create a new team? When is a Teams communication channel enough? Should it be public or private? What kind of documents can be stored in Teams? What happens to the information file and sensitive information?

The OpenKM document management software has been integrated with Microsoft Teams to solve all these drawbacks.

The document management system allows online editing of any type of file, not only those belonging to the Microsoft office package. Thanks to OpenKM's Live Edit system, the file extension is not a limitation. OpenKM's version control system prevents duplication and loss of documents. And the subscription service ensures the perfect functioning of the communication channels defined in OpenKM.

On the other hand, if you want to use simultaneous editing, the OpenKM Online Editor allows you to edit files online, even during meetings organized in Teams.

The OpenKM security policy is applied to the entire document repository of the organization. Many companies choose OpenKM to centralize all their content on one platform; thus, the organization can honestly know what information it has, where it is, who can access it, and under what terms, among other advantages. The OpenKM document management system integrates with Active Directory or LDAP as standard. If the company already has the access policy defined in those applications, it does not have to duplicate it in the document manager.

Another advantage of OpenKM is the possibility of creating customized automatic tasks. For example, if a group of users starts a meeting in Teams, in OpenKM, we can define the route in which all the documentation created by the work team will be hosted. The definition of security at a granular level of OpenKM allows specifying the user's document management experience. We can allow access to internal or external users, in read-only mode, with editing rights (on folders, subfolders, or only specific files), node security update privilege - folder, record, email, document - delete, etc.

One of the most notable benefits of OpenKM is the efficient search capability it offers users. OpenKM's powerful search engine allows users to find any information based on many factors: text extraction, keywords, categories, metadata, etc. The document manager search engine provides access to all the information linked to the content: notes, metadata, history, audit, and relationships with other content; we could even see if the file is part of a workflow. OpenKM includes a workflow engine capable of managing the most complex workflows that can be part of any project executed in Teams. We can also facilitate search tasks by creating "stored searches" for the most common queries at a general level or even a list at a personal level. Other OpenKM features such as reports or search agents provide information of interest to users when a documentary event occurs.

Also, highlight the file plan that the company can implement with OpenKM. The document management system includes an archive module that allows the organization to define the archive, expurgation, or final disposal policy that best suits the applicable regulations or laws. The archive plan is a great help in facilitating compliance and governance of information throughout the company.

To adequately inform users about the action guides and the company's document management plan, OpenKM offers OpenKM Academy, the online training platform, making it easier for users to use document management software in their day-to-day activities. Keep in mind that it is cumbersome for users to open application after application to find the information they need. In this way, by offering them OpenKM as a global work platform, we will be offering them the security and reliability they need to carry out their mission.

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