What are controlled documents

Last updated: 2022-06-17
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Controlled documents are driven by the life cycle

Controlled documents means that documents (attachments) are subject to a document life cycle from creation, validity to archiving. It means tracking documents to ensure that users and employees always have the correct version of the document available. 

From a document management point of view it means, that controlled documents cannot be simply deleted or created, but has to go through defined document states and versions. In other words, creation, publication and deletion is under control and you clearly know when the document was valid (or when the previous version of the document was valid)

Where to use controlled documents

Examples of controlled documentation are company policies, work procedures, manuals or production documentation. 

What does Controlled documents mean

Documents have a life cycle that has three phases. You cannot delete documents, but you can move them from phase to phase. There are three phases within the system:

  • Draft - these documents are being prepared by the author and others
  • Published (Valid)  - these documents are valid, and others have to follow them. You can set the date of validity and the effective date. The date of validity means the document is ready and available to everyone. The effective date means that employees have to follow it and be familiar with it. Use the effective date only if the date of validity is different
  • Retired - these documents are not valid, and they are archived

If you activate managed documents, you lose the option to add links. Managed documents always have the phase written on them, which tells you this function is turned on.

managed documents

Controlled documents are turned off by default

The attachments in Organizers are in a free mode by default as the managed documents function is turned off. This function is only turned on for some selected products, but you can activate it for any Organizer. It is important to know how it affects attachments before turning the function on.

How to turn on controlled documents

The administrator can turn on this function for each Organizer separately. By default, it is enabled only for directive records. It only applies to the attachments of the selected record, it does not apply to any other parts of the system such as tasks or notes. If you want to activate controlled documentation in a given Organizer, proceed as follows:

  1. Go to the Organizer settings
  2. Open "Manage plugins"
  3. Select "Manage files" from the list
  4. Turn it on and save
turn on managed documents

How to turn controlled documents off

If you decide to turn controlled documents off, just switch the button to OFF.

Only the valid documents will be visible after this, though. The documents in the draft and rejected phases will not be visible. They are in the system, but they are not available outside the managed documents function. Go to the plugin settings again and press the trash bin icon next to "Manage files", and delete the plugin.