Document Imaging is the conversion of hardcopy documents into a digital format followed by the indexing of this information for later retrieval. Document management is an all-encompassing term that is used throughout the industry to describe all the relevant technologies including: Document Imaging, Workflow, Document Services, COLD/ERM, Forms and Forms Processing, OCR/ICR, etc. There is a good description of each of these technologies included within the AIIM Implementation Guidelines Document, Version 2, on the AIIM site at: http: standards.aim.org, This document is available at no charge and has been developed by the Implementation Guidelines Standards Committee, as part of the AIIM standards program.
The system rollout planning should always be carefully planned. If you are starting to use multiple technologies, such as document imaging and workflow, it is always recommended to start the document imaging portion first, stabilize that portion of the environment, and then startup the workflow components. Additionally, you should consider the impact to current work and user workloads prior to scheduling these activities. Before you start these implementations, you should also review and carefully consider whether you begin scanning, or processing all work as of a certain date, and what the impact would be if you found a programming or system “bug” forcing you to take the new technology out of production until fixed, or resolved. Finally, you should consider the impact on your users when, not if, “bugs” or problems are encountered. The users will be going through serious change management as they begin using these technologies, and if they are unable to use the system, even for only a few days, they may not have work to perform if you don’t consider a “roll-back” strategy. You should always consider a Phased roll-out and always take into account the emotional impact on the users, as they begin changing the way they perform their work.
As you pointed out, almost every organization has an in-depth understanding of the tasks associated with their business processes. The purpose of the “process baseline” documentation is to fully document all aspects of each portion of the business being evaluated. This evaluation should include all aspects of the work activities, including when documents are received, how they are handled (i.e., opened, sorted, stamped, stapled, folder creation, etc.), how the information is distributed (i.e., delivery, further sorting, preparation for work, copying, etc.), and how the information is shared, tracked, and managed (i.e., copies, personal notes, manual logging and other logs, etc.). Once the “process baseline” documentation is complete, the organization can capture the associated time required to manually prepare and process the work, and evaluate what technologies would be of value and benefit, along with being able to evaluate actual costs for specific work activities. At that point, not only will the organization have a clear picture of exactly what technology is desired, but also have a clear understanding of the organizational expectations and associated technology costs, and anticipated return on the investment.
Many people ask this very same question. The first thing I would like to point out is that there is more information available, other than simply standards. The AIIM standards program has developed a fairly extensive collection of technical reports and guidelines, along with technology standards. These Industry standards, guidelines, and technical reports have been created to assist in stabilizing specific portions of the document management industry. Industry experts, end-users, and product suppliers developed these standards, guidelines, and technical reports as a team following AIIM/ANSI rules associated with the standards program. Following this structured methodology ensures that these documents have been prepared and reviewed by a group of people representing that portion of the industry and further reviewed by the AIIM Standards Board. The value of these standards cannot be overstated. Another positive aspect of these documents is that they benefit organizations considering, planning, and/or implementing these technologies; as the information is vendor neutral and contains sufficient detail allowing organizations to understand the relevant portion of the technology, how it works, and how to utilize it within their project structures. End users gain significant value from the guidelines and technical reports, as these documents provide detailed information on topics such as implementation planning, scanning/indexing preparation, organization change issues and procedures, etc. These documents are a compilation of numerous years of actual project experience from industry experts and end-users enabling end-users to better prepare and plan their projects.
You are correct. We have heard many people try to use the terms “routing” and “workflow” interchangeably, confusing many end-users and organizations reviewing, or considering these technologies. Workflow is defined by the Workflow Management Coalition (WfMC) as:

The automation of a business process, in whole or part, during which documents, information, or tasks are passed from one participant to another for action, according to a set of procedural rules”

The WfMC has further defined a workflow system as:

A system that defines, creates and manages the execution of workflows through the use of software, running on one or more workflow engines, which is able to interpret the process definition, interact with workflow participants and, where required, invoke the use of IT tools and applications.

The definition of routing can be considered the transfer or exchange of information between 2 or more users or steps within a process, or task. The important difference is that all workflow technologies include some level of information, or process/activity, routing, but routing does not ever include process management (workflow).

There is no magic formula or answer to this extremely important question. When evaluating the implementation of document imaging, it is important to review/consider not only the volume of documents being received, but also how that information will be indexed, allowing for later retrieval and use. At a minimum, you should always consider indexing at least 2 fields for every document. The purpose of indexing 2 fields is that this approach further enables users to find the information they are trying to locate. Having 3 scanning stations would probably indicate a fairly high level of daily information that requires to be scanned. Before attempting to manually index all documents, I would encourage that you consider using “patch codes”, “barcodes”, or OCR technologies to automate the identification of as many incoming documents as possible. After that, I would recommend that you consider in what time frame the scanned documents need to become available, how many fields you need to index, and how much time it will take for your indexing team to not only index each document, but also to verify the information as being accurate.
There are several methods to securely store and manage your documents/content. The most common technology seen today is magnetic worm, with regular network drives followed by optical storage. There are many variations of how the magnetic worm products function and how they operate, but there is a new effort underway to develop a magnetic WORM standard in AIIM AIIM C21 Advanced Data Storage (C21). There are standards in place today for both 5 1/4 (130mm) optical media and 3 1/2 (90mm) optical media. Organizations should consider whether they are required to comply with industry standards for Trusted ECM solutions (ISO 15801). Also, organizations should consider how long the data needs to be maintained, whether integrated records management and eDiscovery support is required, etc. A key decision point for the organization should be to determine what level of security and access speed is required.
Document storage in the original formats is recommended until your organization is fully confident that the document imaging portion of the system is stable, the information is being properly indexed and stored, all information is available, and various legal steps have been taken to ensure the ability to certify documents from the system as being authenticate reproductions of the original. Also, don’t forget to create a best business practices document that describes how you can demonstrate that the information is accurate, comes from a reliable source, and that the technology being employed, and used, is reliable is nature.

Some organization hold onto the hard-copy information for 1 year or so, and others less time. The specific time for your organization will be based on your comfort levels. These technologies are very stable. The issues that always come into play are the times that it takes for the system to have “roll-out” issues addressed/resolved and the time for the users to become familiar with the new technology during the scanning, indexing, and data verification phases.

The purpose of this document is to document how your business is using the selected technologies, what steps have been taken to ensure information accuracy, and how you have ensured system reliability and the appropriate level of security to prevent unauthorized access, or information tampering. These documents are not user manuals, but rather identify both user procedures and existing user manuals; along with organizational guidelines and “mandates”. This document should also include information related to the certification process for information being requested, and how the organization is able to re-produce authentic reproductions of the original document. Reference to current laws, or regulations, along with legal review, ensuring your organization’s compliance with these laws or regulations should also be included.

There is a national and international effort underway to develop a technical report on this very issue. This project is working under the AIIM Standards “umbrella”, specifically the C22 Evidentiary committee and ISO TC 171. The document number is ISO 15801 and is in the process of finalization by ISO and prepared for publication. If you contact either the C22 committee chair, or Ms Betsy Fanning at AIIM, you will be able to get more information on this work effort.