Email is NOT a Document Management System

Posted by Romeo Elias on Fri, Nov 03, 2006 @ 03:12 PM

On behalf of Jaime Sipila

Does this sound familiar? “Does the 10/11/06 email have the most recent requirements document, or was there a later email that I wasn’t copied on?” Or better yet… “Hey, I’ve been working for the last week based on the specifications laid out in the 10/11/06 email. It’s not my fault that I wasn’t cc’d with the latest version. It’s not my responsibility.”

Email is a powerful and critical communications tool in today’s fast-paced Internet economy. It is NOT, however, a document management tool. Too many companies are using it as such, and the purpose of this series of brief articles is to point out some of the fallacies and issues of using email to manage documents, and also to begin to define the attributes of a better system.

For each of the next four weeks the following fallacies will be explored:

  • Fallacy 1 – email is great for document management because it is a collaborative tool
  • Fallacy 2 – email is great for storing documents because I can easily search for them
  • Fallacy 3 – email promotes accountability
  • Fallacy 4 – email is more efficient

Stay tuned...