Cloud Portal Office Version 2.3 Helps SMBs to be More Efficient
Cloud Portal Office has been specifically designed to help Small and Medium-Sized Businesses (SMBs) make the digital transition from being a paper-based office to being a digital office. It helps to solve many of the problems associated with data being stored in lots of different formats and in many different places and makes information easy to find, manage and distribute.
Cloud Portal Office Version 2.3 can also automate many of the manual and repetitive administration tasks that involve retrieving information from paper documents, and integrates with many business applications e.g. Sage Accounting.
It is available now and includes updates and new features to help you save time, increase productivity and comply with data regulations. Below, we introduce the most important new additions:
Mandatory Fields are a new way to make sure that everyone saves a file in a way that makes it easy to find. This helps with a common frustration: Sharp’s recent research with office workers, found that the average person spends an annoying 22 minutes per day searching for files on the server.
When creating a document type, the business can define which data needs to be captured in Mandatory Fields, making it impossible for a user to save a file without entering certain required pieces of information, for example, if the document is an invoice, it has to be saved with its invoice number.
We think it’s a feature that is becoming more important, as it helps businesses to meet new compliance requirements such as the EU General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR). It helps a business to capture all the data necessary for compliance as early as possible and in a structured way.
Document Retention is another area relevant to compliance. This new feature allows users, when designing a document type or storage folder in Cloud Portal Office, to make sure that files are stored without changes for a certain defined period of time.
Users can now set a retention period in line with business needs and configure it to start automatically when a file is added to a folder. Users can also set the retention period manually on specific files.
Files that do not have a retention period can be edited by any user, provided they have the required permissions. However, when files are in Document Retention state they cannot be edited, deleted or tampered with.
One essential area for the use of Document Retention is in the keeping of financial records, where there may be a legal requirement to store such documents for a defined period. For example, in the UK, a limited company must keep accounting records for a minimum of six years, or longer in certain circumstances. Using Document Retention in Cloud Portal Office ensures records are kept safe and compliant.
The system administrator, if needed, can move files when they are in retention, bring files out of retention or change the length of the retention period. However, the important thing from a compliance point-of-view is that if any changes are made to the retention rules, they are written to an audit log and are therefore traceable.
Near the end of the retention period, Cloud Portal Office sends a notification to the user to inform them that the retention period is nearly finished. This notification can be set to arrive three days or seven days before the end of the period, defined by the system administrator.
After the document retention period ends, the user can decide whether the file should be archived – perhaps moved to an Archive folder they have set up on Cloud Portal Office, or moved to another storage location on their system – or deleted.
If a business decides at any point that they want to export their data from Cloud Portal Office, this can be done through a request to Sharp, and includes all data in Document Retention state, as well as documents saved without a retention period.
Cloud storage solutions allow for greater collaboration, and in Cloud Portal Office version 2.3 we have made this easier with the introduction of Library Services, a ‘check out’ tool for version control.
Previously, Cloud Portal Office offered a simple version control system that created a new version of a document when it was saved by a user. Now, when a user opens a document that is saved in Cloud Portal Office, this ‘checks out’ the document, which means that other users can view it, but they cannot edit it. If other users try to edit the document at the same time they get a notification informing them that it has already been checked out.
Once the user has finished working on their document, it can be saved, with an option to create a new version if required.
To support the growing number of us who work from home, or on the move, we have also added several new features to the Cloud Portal Office mobile app, including review, comment and notifications.
Using the Cloud Portal Office app, you can now review documents and add comments on both Android and iOS devices. We have also added a ‘subscribe to notifications’ feature on Mobile, which works well with the review and comment feature. It allows you to create a workflow that can be carried out away from your desk, for example, you can be notified of an invoice, check it and then provide feedback all from your smartphone or tablet.
As we continue to develop Cloud Portal Office to meet the needs of the Small and Medium-Sized Business user, it increasingly becomes an essential tool. If you would like to know more about Cloud Portal Office or the other document management solutions in our Document Solutions portfolio, please Get In Touch for a demonstration.
PR Manager CEE