This blog is the first post in a series that will consist of multiple short posts that touch on a number of differences between TSG’s HPI solution and the Webtop and D2 interfaces. For the first post, we will discuss searching for content. Users of ECM systems are often willing to put up with some of the more complex functionality (i.e. checkin, checkout, workflows), if they can quickly and accurately locate content. However, if users are unable to easily perform this basic function, you can be sure that they will be quick to loudly voice their concerns and find ways around using the ECM application.
Searching for Content in Webtop
Webtop, by default, takes the user to a folder browser view. From the main page a user can also quickly execute a full text search. TSG does not typically recommend either of these default search methods to our clients. Folder browsing in Webtop is slow and only allows documents to be categorized according to one taxonomy. For example if your folder structure separates documents by Site and Department, the user cannot “folder browse” to a view showing you all protocols related to a specific product. Full text searching is not recommended as a default search method since full text searching typically produces large unwieldy search results sets.
To get to a better, more-targeted, search in Webtop, the user would need to click on the “Advanced” button above and be displayed the Webtop “Build a Search” interface.
From this screen, user is required to select a document type and then build the search by selecting an attribute (i.e. Product), an operation (i.e. equals, <,>, contains) and then a value. Users add additional criteria by selecting “add a line”, an operation for the line (AND, OR) and then adding another attribute, operation and value. As you can quickly see this process involves quite a few clicks as well as deep logic thinking.
Searching for Content in D2
D2, the more modern and configurable Documentum interface, has aimed to make searching easier for the end-user. In the screen shot below you can see some of the search options that are available with D2:
- Quick Search – can be configured to be full text search or search against specific properties
- Search Form – Performs a search using a pre-configured attributes
- Folder Browser – Drill through folders to find documents
- Advanced Search – Similar to Webtop “Build a Search” (not displayed)
The most notable difference in the D2 search options is the Search Form (Titled “Documents by zone and country”). However, this Search Form falls short when multiple document types with unique properties are introduced. In this scenario, a search form would need to be configured for each document type.
Searching for Content in HPI
HPI was built with a focus on making search simple for the end user. HPI’s default search interface is comparable to D2’s Search Form, but takes the concept a few steps further:
- Streamlined – HPI has the concept or “trac” or business area that allows users to segment data in addition to document types. For example, users can search against Policy or Claim documents in the Insurance trac, and Contracts in the Legal trac. With a single click the search interface adapts to display different search properties for the trac and document type that was selected.
- Simple – While HPI provide numerous search options, by default the user is displayed the search option that will allow them to most successfully find their content.
See the short video below that shows off some of these features.
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In addition to the HPI search interface demonstrated above, HPI, like Webtop and D2, contains the ability to locate content by: browsing through folders, performing full text searches, and entering complex advanced searches. However HPI has specifically chosen to drive users towards the simple, streamlined search interface that allows users to perform targeted searches with a few simple mouse clicks.
Look for our upcoming posts which will talk about additional Search topics as well as other features.