Formal Document Control
All the expected things a standard Document Management system includes and more besides. This application is great for Policies, Procedures, SOP's, Forms Checklists (plus any other types you want to control); each can be created using a number of Template types, and held in a Working documents database. Once a document has passed through a one or more Formal Approvals, it can be Published to a separate Library (which only holds Live / Issued / Released / Published documents) where they are available for viewing by ‘normal’ users in a PDF format. In the Master Documents library, we have built enhanced functionality around the standard SharePoint features of Check-In / Out, Versioning, Approvals, Publishing etc, to do things like stopping a document from being Published until it has been Formally Approved and inhibiting change until the Approval/Review process is completed.
Importantly we've also covered the requirements of Reviews, Approvals, Publishing, Escalation reminders, Cyclical (annual) review reminders and Change Request Management all within the system.
Having separate locations for material which is 'Published' and another for 'Master Documents' helps ensure that the 'how to' documentation people should use to do their work and jobs can not be mixed up with the material being prepared for change and the 'next' version or archived material. Documents can be listed either in simple 'Views', or through a front-end portal to match existing intranets etc. - much is possible to present material as you need it.
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Our ShareQuality Applications have been developed as a set of template applications which can be used as core building blocks from which fully featured applications can be onwardly developed. They have a breadth of functionality which addresses the core needs of a wide range of compliance and regulatory needs for an organisation.
The approach taken has been to use the 80-20 rule for designing solutions, with the template providing a reasonable match and extra work being required to ensure that a really good fit is gained against an organisation's specific and unique requirements. If an organisation is looking to implement a controlling approach to a specific aspect of their document needs, then they will always have some elements of the process and system they either have or want to develop that will be unique and unlike any other organisation's needs - 'the same but different' comes to mind. The uniqueness or individuality a company needs is something which on the whole tends not to work if you are purchasing 'off-the-shelf' systems; that is unless you are prepared to pay both a full licence fee to purchase the use of the product, and to pay extra to tailor it to match your specific needs.
ShareQuality has the advantage that it has been developed knowing that change is inevitable and to be applauded, making a system framework which has the greatest chance of matching the needs of the organisation.
Generic document controlling capabilities exist within SharePoint and these have been used and enhanced to provide greater usefulness. These include extensive Workflow capabilities, linking to email systems, integration with Calendaring, allocation of Task items directly into user's mailboxes, a vast range of add-ins from other Microsoft Business Partners, extensive search capabilities. intranet, extranet, application portal and other website management options.