RE: Document Repository Software

Subject: RE: Document Repository Software
From: "Dan Goldstein" <DGoldstein -at- riverainmedical -dot- com>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 9 Mar 2006 10:40:41 -0500

Been there, bought that. Before we looked at any document control
systems, we wrote a detailed spec of our minimum requirements. Then, we
got Those-Who-Know, Those-Who-Care, and Those-Who-Sign-Checks to look
over the spec and give their comments.

Possible details for your spec's first draft include:
* Web access
* Collaborative revisions
* Author control of other users' access
* Version control tracking
* Hosted in-house or by vendor
* Document sorting and cataloging
* Document tagging with keywords
* User-posted comments/ideas about others' docs
* Part 11 and HIPAA compliance

Our spec was about three pages long, and it was pretty concise. The less
you need, the shorter the spec, and (if you're lucky) the lower the
cost. Some document repository systems are free; some cost many
thousands of dollars.

Once you have an agreed spec, it will be easier to review the candidate
applications -- we looked at MS SharePoint, Xerox DocuShare, IBM/Lotus
Domino.doc, Livelink, Documentum, etc.

When I met vendors during this process, I insisted that they compare
their out-of-the-box capabilities with our spec. Most of them
(surprise!) required vendor customization that dramatically skewed the
initial price comparison. The one major vendor whose product required no
customization was actually disappointed! -- but we weren't. In the best
of all possible worlds, the only cost is the initial purchase price.

Caveat emptor, and keep your eyes on the spec.

-- Dan Goldstein

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Melissa Nelson
> Sent: Thursday, March 09, 2006 10:23 AM
> To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
> Subject: Document Repository Software
> HI All,
> I am sure this has been brought up on here before and I
> apologize for not paying attention. However, my boss is
> talking about getting new documentation repository
> software that will allow myself and our brand new
> (YIPPEE!!!) QA team to have easy access to
> documentation for testing purposes. Naturally...he
> wants it to be cheap too...sigh! :) I personally want it
> to be easy without a big huge learning curve...I have
> spent weeks learning a clunky govt system that will soon
> be deprecated anyway!

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