In enhancing its document and workflow management processes, Eric Wright Group has extended its use of Causeway Enterprise Content Management (ECM), implementing ECM Plans – a subscription-based model – to fund the upgrade through fixed monthly payments.

Eric Wright Group first introduced Causeway ECM in 2013, initially to manage drawings, documents and emails more effectively – gradually rolling the solution out across its divisions.

“During this process the middle managers using the system identified other areas where ECM could deliver efficiency improvements and other benefits,” recalled Group IT Project Manager Steven Lee. “Following discussions with Causeway on how best to introduce additional functionality the system is now being extended to include workflow management and mobile capabilities,” he added.
In doing so, the company has adopted ECM Plans, a function-rich simplified licencing model priced on an annual subscription basis.
“The subscription approach supports more efficient cash flow management allowing us to fix our costs. It also enables us to introduce the additional functionality without putting extra pressure on our IT department, because of the increased engagement with Causeway,” Steve Lee continued.

Eric Wright had already seen major improvements in internal communications through ECM with simpler filing processes – freeing one member of staff from central filing to focus on drawing management. Moreover, the move to digital document management had freed up 87m2 of former archive space for use as offices.

“Another major benefit has been the improvement in retrieval speeds,” Steven Lee explained. “Documents can now be retrieved almost instantly and there is no risk of documents being lost, or of losing track of which is the latest version. Not only does this reduce the risks associated with misfiling, it also supports our compliance with the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) industry benchmark,” he noted.

With structured workflows in place it is harder for processes to be ignored or bypassed, thus saving time and reducing the risk of mistakes. The system also provides complete visibility of audit and management information with enhanced analysis that supports ongoing improvements to business processes.

Furthermore, the integration between the document management and workflow platforms allows documents to be integrated, embedded and accessed directly from key transactions and supports data interchange within a workflow process and other business software.

Managing workflows

In the second phase of the implementation the company is introducing a structured workflow management system to help ‘de-silo’ the different areas of the business. The simple workflow design tools within Causeway ECM make it very easy to define and document processes. This ensures a more joined-up approach that underpins the smooth transition of outputs from one department to inputs to another department, with clear identification of responsibility throughout the flow.

Compliance with company processes is further supported by the use of mobile technologies, so that field-based staff also have access to document archives and workflows.

Throughout this process Causeway has worked closely with Eric Wright, advising on implementation of the system and helping to customise the branding of the workflows so they match the company’s intranet. Creating a familiar interface in this way has made it easier for users to interact with the system so that the benefits are realised more quickly.

“Extending the use of ECM within the business is helping to address some of our key drivers and we continue to engage internally – and with Causeway – in identifying opportunities to fine tune the system even further,” Steven Lee concluded.

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