Friday, 29 August 2014

Academy Charitable Trust Document Management System

Last year our school converted to an academy.   To help us with the set-up of the administrative side of the new organisation, I set up an electronic document management system to hold our management documents such as policies and procedures.

The system I set up was a modified version of OpenDocMan.   This has worked pretty well from the point of view of recording the documents and allowing us to retrieve the issued version, but now we are looking at updating some of the documents, and establishing another part of the organisation, we are finding some limitations.   The most significant problem is that the document does not appear publicly while it is waiting for approval - I want the latest issued document to always be available even while we are reviewing and approving the new version.

I decided that rather than modifying my version of OpenDocMan, it is probably better to write an alternative simple system based on an established software framework.

The new Hartlepool Aspire Trust Document Management System (HDMS) is based on the cakephp framework, which makes interfacing with the database, and dealing with internet http requests very simple, and it automatically produced the code to do basic database record creation/deletion etc. automatically, so I only had to do the 'business' logic.

The concepts for the new system and workflow are shown in these slides, and there is a demo installation here.
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