ECM for temps & moonlighters

Sean Nathaniel, Chief Technology Officer of Upland Software and General Manager of the company’s FileBound ECM division, wants to foment a revolution in the way organisations plan, manage and execute work.

Upland is developing secure cloud applications to handle the reality of today’s decentralised Workforce. In fact a recent McKinsey study found that 34-36% of the American workforce now consists of freelancers, including temps, moonlighters and independent contractors, and that number is expected to hit 40% by 2020.

“Organizations have not adapted to the way individuals want to work today,” said Nathaniel.

“We know work will be accomplished by decentralised teams and these teams will be transient in nature. They want to work within fluid organizations, which is difficult when people are still accessing data in spreadsheets. They want to utilise technology delivered through the cloud and available anywhere on any device.”

However departmental silos and disparate systems in the enterprise make achieving this objective difficult.

Upland has been focussing on enhancing the use of automated forms and workflows in the FileBound ECM in recent years, as it saw users found more value from automating the flow of their work than simply managing the work. 

“If you look at most of the processes in an enterprise today, they’re driven by some type of data entry.  Enabling forms capability that takes the initiation of the process outside of the company’s four walls and closer to the point of origin was a key aspect to maximizing value for our customers.”

“We also wrap the process automation with analytics that gives you insights into process optimisation.   Traditionally you had to plug a third party solution to get the insights into improving your business processes.”

Many organisations are keen to exploit the potential of automated forms and workflow, but not ready to adopt a full ECM solution, something Upland has tapped into with a modular approach.

“There are occasions where it makes sense to integrate two or more products to solve a problem. We have a customer who’s been using our portfolio management solution for capital expenditure planning, and most of the portfolio management solutions lack advanced workflow.  ECM systems have great advanced workflow, but those customers would never buy an ECM solution.  We’ve taken the FileBound workflow, tied it into the portfolio management solution to provide the exact flexibility that customers need.” 

“We’re seeing many such use cases, and are delivering integrated solutions to meet that need – it’s our customer driven innovation strategy.” 

“Another example is in project management; customers struggle with capturing and managing ideas – the ideation process.    In a world where ideas are coming in from customers, partners, vendors and others, how do you add them to your development process?  How do you get all those in a process that organizes them before you put them into a project management solution?” 

“We’re enable customers to use FileBound’s forms capability to capture all of the ideas, put it into a workflow, group them, rank them and through that workflow process, add them to the project management system.”

“From a compliance perspective, our philosophy is to get the content into the system, and through the workflow processes identify content that needs to be classified and make sure the customers have visibility into the content and the content types of the system.”

Rather than the records manager being at the front end of the process they’re more in the middle where you’re using rules and intelligence to identify content that should be reviewed or looked at.  Upland is pursuing a platform agnostic future for FileBound ECM on-premise or hosted in the cloud with an identical licensing model.

“We’re taking that entire discussion out of the way so that we can adapt to the way the customer wants to deliver the solutions that they need.”

“If you’re looking at automating processes that are going to drive efficiency in your organisation and deliver that quickly and continuously, that’s where FileBound fits”.