FileHold and SharePoint: Working Together for Better Document Management

Written by SharePoint Reviews Team. Posted in SharePoint Product News

Latest release of FileHold Allows for Integration with Microsoft SharePoint!
FileHold is a feature-rich document management software tailored to the needs of medium sized business and departments of large companies.  This product is easy to install and easy to use with a Microsoft “look and feel” and based on Microsoft technologies (Active Directory, .NET, SQL Server and Windows Server) ... 

From the beginning FileHold was tightly integrated with Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook.  Users can easily “drag and drop” documents from any Microsoft application into FileHold.  Documents can easily be attached from FileHold to Outlook e-mail.

So, what’s new with FileHold now? In November of 2008 FileHold released version 8.5 which included integration with Microsoft SharePoint as a “Web Part”.  FileHold synchronizes user rights with SharePoint via Active Directory and allows users to move documents between FileHold and SharePoint with simple mouse clicks.

Document Management Software

 

Since SharePoint markets itself as a document  management solution, as well as many other things, the questions is asked when and how is there a role for a FileHold document management software in a SharePoint world?  The purpose of this article is to respond to that question.

When does FileHold stand alone?

As pervasive as SharePoint is there are still many companies who are Microsoft centric but for various reasons have not deployed SharePoint.  In all of these companies FileHold provides a viable, affordable feature rich document management solution but; best of all, when the company decides to deploy SharePoint they know that FileHold is ready to become a “Web Part”.  Some companies are planning or in the process of deploying SharePoint but they may want to fast track some document management functionality such as document scanning  or even an advanced feature such as “redaction” (the automatic ability to securely block out sensitive information).  In these cases FileHold can be rapidly implemented, at low cost to provide these needed features. 

FileHold stands alone in opportunities that demand a Commercial Off The Shelf (COTS) solution that will be automatically supported by version upgrades and formal support agreements.  This is often small companies, or departments that do not have IT resources to configure and support platform based solutions. In many stand alone situations FileHold will be synchronized with Microsoft Active Directory giving the IT departments a single source of user rights management.

When does FileHold make SharePoint better?

 “Out of the Box” FileHold supports complex document scanning, imaging and “redaction”.  These are “must have” features in a document management system and are not provided inherently in SharePoint – they must be added through 3rd party components often at significant expense and time.  There are many additional features that FileHold brings to SharePoint as a “Web Part”, a few of these include:

  • AutoTagging – the ability to drag a document into a folder and have complex meta-data or “tags” applied to the document automatically.  This is a must have in certain verticals such as the legal market where it is referred to as “matter centric” filing.
  • A full Featured Document viewer which allows users to look at virtually any document type including WordPerfect, lotus and even complex CAD drawings.
  • Mark up and Annotations – the ability to add sticky notes, stamps and even comments to documents without having the native applications installed.
  • Auto Naming of stored file:  FileHold can automatically apply a name to any document based on the metadata tags for that document – this encourages standard naming conventions.
  • A rich desktop set of features for power users including “drag and drop” to bring documents into the repository.
  • FileHold FastFind – a technology that allows FileHold to integrate with any Microsoft Forms application and allow users to “hot key” from any field in their business application to FileHold search.
  • Document  Numbering schemes – FileHold supports rich array of document numbering schemes for document control, versioning and even ‘Bates” numbering.

When does SharePoint take FileHold to a higher level?

FileHold is focused on being the best document management software for the price in the marketplace.  FileHold has great basic and advanced functionality but many enterprises’ want more and they have found that SharePoint can provide the Enterprise features they are seeking.  A few examples of document management related features that go beyond the capabilities of FileHold but are available in SharePoint include:

  • Complex workflows – FileHold uses the same Microsoft Workflow Foundation as is found in Sharepoint but in FileHold there are limitations on the complexity of the workflows that can be generated.  In SharePoint there are no restrictions allowing administrators to develop the complex workflow processes that may be needed.
  • In FileHold documents can only be edited in their native applications.  In Sharepoint documents can be edited on line via the internet using WebDav.
  • SharePoint comes complete with the ability to create user Wikis that can be used to edit a single or collection of web pages.
  • While FileHold has a portal capability it is restricted only to the documents contained within FileHold.  SharePoint ahs the ability to allow users to create Portals for extensive project based communications.
  • Collaboration – SharePoint is a very strong collaboration tool to encourage communication and sharing between workgroups.  This fits nicely with FileHold allowing users to feely collaborate on documents but in the end storing the final work product in FileHold as the permanent record.
  • InfoPath Forms capabilities – SharePoint has the ability to allow users to create and manage frequently used forms and insert them into complex workflow.  This is an advanced capability FileHold does not support.

Conclusion

Microsoft provides a great software development environment (Visual Studio Team Suite) for companies like FileHold to create user specific applications. They also have a great platform in SharePoint to address the modern and complex communication needs of industry.  Both FileHold and SharePoint leverage the power of SQL2005 reporting services to empower customers to mine data in their systems creating powerful business intelligence. There is definitely room in the market  for FileHold and SharePoint alone and together.

FileHold document management software only operates on Microsoft platforms and requires SQL server and Windows Server.  Integration with SharePoint requires SharePoint Server 2007 (MOSS) with Service Pack 1 or Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 with Service Pack 1.

FileHold pricing starts at $4,475.00 USD for 5 user licenses, which includes the server software and 6 months of support.  Pricing beyond 5 users is based on “registered” users or “seats” and is also based on “concurrent access” to the FileHold server.  There are many options available for FileHold so users pay only for features that are needed.  FileHold offers a FileCare program that includes unlimited technical support and all product upgrades.  FileHold gives live, on line, demonstrations which can be followed by a free trial.

How to get more information

Keith Corbett of Blueskies Consulting put together an informative white paper on FileHold and SharePoint integration - you can take a look at it here. You can also contact Larry Oliver, President of FileHold, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or call 604-734-5653.


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Inna Gordin
Author: Inna GordinWebsite: http://www.linkedin.com/in/innagordin
Founder and Principal of SharePointReviews.com, the world's largest independent SharePoint product directory. | Follow Inna @innagordin

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