What is DocuWare and how does it work?What a delight to be interviewed by Website Planet, thank you for having me! DocuWare provides businesses of all sizes with document management and automation solutions. From manufacturing and retail to healthcare and government, we help organisations across industries transform their files into findable, secure electronic documents. Our solutions can be hosted on-premises, in the Cloud or as a hybrid application to automate repetitive manual tasks, reduce dependence on paper files, and deliver secure access to information and files anytime from anywhere.
What sparked the idea, and what have you achieved so far?We were founded in a small town outside Munich in 1988. Our aim was and remains simple to this day: to provide a software tool to empower organisations of any size to digitise and automate their own business processes and become more productive, efficient, and profitable. Over the almost 35 years we’ve been in business we have grown to approximately 600 employees, and are now spread over five offices globally. We serve over 100 countries with our solutions totalling 15,000+ customers, over 7000 of whom use DocuWare Cloud, our ground-breaking product which launched in 2012. We’re recognised by customers, partners, and leading market analysis companies, such as Gartner and Nucleus, as a reputable secure solution for document management and workflow automation for teams and companies of all sizes. * * After 10 years working in various positions in strategic planning, marketing and international software sales at Siemens AG, Max Ertl served as Business Development Director for Nemetschek AG. Max joined DocuWare as VP Marketing in 2001 and was promoted to Chief Revenue Officer (CRO) in January 2018. Max assumed the role of co-president on January 1, 2019 with global responsibility for sales and marketing.
How does your mission differ from the other companies in your niche?We’ve proudly been a leader and innovator in the document management software (DMS) space for many years and we place our experience and our ability to lead this change that has made us – and continues to make us – stand out as a go-to software provider. Back when we were first founded, the only option the business world had was on-premise installations. Of course, at the time and even a little beyond that, this did have its value, however by 2012, we recognised a real market demand for an equally secure but more scalable, flexible platform. This led us to pioneer the availability of cloud-based document management and cloud storage solutions to the small and medium-sized business (SMB) market. We wanted to develop a standard software which is easy to use and install. Then we found out that not only SMBs liked this approach, but also large enterprises, who are now buying our solution. What we believe really makes us stand out from our competitors is the stance we take as an employer. We have four core principles that we honour each and every day:
Be decent, passionate, innovative and customer-centric
Each one of our team, no matter their role or their location in the world, lives by these at work and by doing so we all share a common interest and goal. This has created a fantastic corporate culture and environment to work in, which in turn has resulted in many loyal customers as well as happy employees.
Who are your typical users and what problems do they have when they come to you?As I mentioned, we serve customers of all sizes across a whole range of industries, each with their own unique problems to solve. If I could narrow it down to ‘trends’ that we see crop up time and time again, the problems that our customers want to solve through digitalisation are:
- To improve productivity and collaboration – By digitising paper records, information can be easily and securely exchanged and retrieved, no matter the time or place. A typical user here would be accounting professionals.
- To maximise security and compliance – Through digitalisation, teams can restrict unauthorised viewing of confidential documents and develop guidelines to protect client privacy, as well as prove compliance, and counter cyber-threats with state-of-the-art encryption of data, documents, and online communication. Typical users here are HR professionals.
- To get ‘future-ready’ – By adopting automation, teams can implement a user-friendly solution that adjusts to the needs of multiple departments without adding work for the IT team. In addition to this, it helps safeguard against hacking, malware, and other illegal acts that target technology infrastructure.
What makes them eventually choose you over your competitors?DocuWare products can be purchased on a small scale as needed by departments or by the process. Then as user acceptance grows and the business begins to see the benefits of increased efficiencies and increased profitability, the solution can be easily scaled up for a larger deployment. This is a big selling point for small to medium-sized businesses. What we see that also makes us stand apart is that we work with a huge network of Partners/resellers. These Partners/resellers are locally based organisations offering expert local support and professional services to the customer at every stage of their digital transformation. And we have a feature-rich public cloud solution which we developed over 15 years and this version is the same which you get as an on-premises solution. In the end, the customer decides if we should deliver our solution as a cloud service or if they want it installed on premises. We don’t know any other competitor who can do the same.
What integrations and tools do your customers use more often in combination with DocuWare?DocuWare solutions are built to work within an existing IT ecosystem, and so far our solutions have successfully integrated with over 500 different applications. We provide a seamless flow of information between applications, departments, and teams through flexible, secure and holistic integration, as well as key business hardware like scanners and multifunction devices for effortless conversion of paper to digital. The benefits from these valuable synergies can be seen across every area of a company, from the likes of sales and accounting to HR.
Is there one success story from your clientele that you are particularly proud of?We work with Smile Train, a large global non-profit organisation. For over two decades, they have supported safe and quality cleft care for 1.5+ million children globally. Smile Train uses DocuWare as a supplement to its accounting platform to process invoices and other financial documents like vendor agreements and contracts electronically. With over 5,200 vendor agreements and thousands of invoices to be processed, the previous way of manual paper-based invoicing processes was difficult for the non-profit to manage and took too much time. With DocuWare, workflow was digitised, improving communications, efficiency, and accuracy. As a result, the company can now focus more of its valuable time on providing children of the world with cleft-related care. We are immensely proud of the work we continue to do for Smile Train. On our website we have lots of case studies from all types of happy customers, you can find these here: