Today’s information workers and other employees need
to do all they can to improve collaboration, especially when it comes to working with shared documents. Overcoming inefficient tools and document management processes is key to reducing costs and improving productivity.
However, despite the fact that information workers frequently interact with documents in a shared manner, many challenges exist that demonstrate the need for improved collaboration among work teams or between companies and external parties, such as vendors, suppliers or customers. As a result, these employees lose a significant amount of time using inefficient tools and ineffective processes to access, read, review or manage documents. In turn, this costs the overall organization in terms of lost time and productivity.
The potential of document collaboration
Electronic document collaboration provides numerous benefits, and when you think about it, it is used by almost every organization today. The ability to edit documents electronically improves response times, reduces errors and omissions, provides for better versioning, and drives productivity. Even so, electronic document collaboration can sometimes prove difficult to achieve due to inconsistencies in file formats and a lack of appropriate tools.
Of course, electronic document editing is simple when users are standardized on the same application and system platform. For example, two Windows users running Microsoft Word should have few problems editing and tracking the same electronic file, even after multiple edits and versions. But what happens when one user is running Word for Mac? What happens if one user prefers to edit the file on an iPad or other tablet device? More importantly, what if one user who needs to edit the file does not have access to the Microsoft Word application at all?
The role PDF plays in improving collaboration – and results
For many business users, PDF software plays a vital role when it comes to document collaboration. PDF is the open standard for electronic document exchange, and it is the most widely used when it comes to integration with existing document management systems. Because of its compatibility across various platforms and operating systems, PDF is also the standard file format for business document collaboration.
Yet, many PDF solutions are less than adequate when it comes to enabling true electronic document collaboration. Even certain versions of leading PDF tools offer very few document-editing features. The process of re-creating or locating an original document to repurpose and edit its contents can be time consuming and very frustrating. In many cases, knowledge workers often resort to printing the PDF file in order to edit and mark up the document manually. In turn, the revised version of the printed document is then rescanned and returned as a new PDF file so the process can begin all over again.
Printing documents for manual editing seems archaic in this day and age. As PDF has become more popular, the number of solutions that allow users to create, edit, and share PDF files has also grown. Today, there are a variety of PDF conversion software programs available that allow for in-application editing of PDF documents. Some are more sophisticated than others, but many offer familiar tools such as text edit, bold, underline, highlight, and redline features.
Many businesses remain unaware of the productivity drain that results from inadequate editing tools in existing PDF software. By empowering users with an intuitive PDF software solution, it could become just as simple to edit a PDF file as it is to create one.