Document controllers are responsible for the workflow and record keeping of electronic or hard copy documents, either for a special project, department or an entire organisation. They prepare, move, organise and file all technical or commercial documents, and make sure they comply with legal and business regulations.
You could be:
identifying and numbering documents that come into the department or organisation
using an electronic document management system (EDMS) such as Sharepoint, to index, store and retrieve a wide variety of document types (for example, security, training records or engineering drawings)
converting paper documents to digital format by scanning them using software linked to the EDMS
reviewing documents, checking they comply with regulations, creating revisions and archiving outdated versions
distributing documents to the relevant people, departments or organisations, and letting them know when they need to take action on a document as part of a process
creating master document templates and forms, and training employees how to use them
preparing and updating document control procedures for the company
making sure that departments are following the correct procedures in the document flow process
perhaps carrying out administration duties for specific departments or teams in the organisation.
The figures below are only a guide. Actual pay rates may vary, depending on:
where you work
the size of company or organisation you work for
the demand for the job.
Starting salaries for document controllers are around £23,000 a year, rising to around £28,000 with experience. Senior document controllers can earn up to around £40,000 a year.
You would be based in an office.
Your hours would normally be regular, 9.00am-5.00pm, Monday to Friday, although in some sectors this could be more.
You would work overtime to meet certain project deadlines.
Many entrants move into this job from an entry level position, such as an administrator, and gain experience as a trainee.
To get into an entry level position, you normally need at least 4 or 5 subjects at National 5 including English and Maths.
Some employers expect document controllers to be graduates in a subject related to their industry. This could be in a science, engineering, IT or business administration subject.
A qualification in an information management or librarianship subject can also be useful.
Entry to HND (SCQF Level 8) courses are usually 1-2 Highers, and degrees (SCQF Levels 9-10) generally 3-5 Highers including English and/or Maths. Check institutions’ websites for individual entry requirements.
You need excellent IT skills, and experience of using software such as the Microsoft Word, Excel and Adobe Acrobat.
A driving licence could be useful.
Document controllers mainly work in engineering, construction or manufacturing industries, but also work across a wider range such as the oil and gas, utilities and medical industries.
What Does it Take?
You should have:
excellent organisational skills
good written and verbal communication skills
good multitasking skills
good attention to detail.
You should be able to work:
as part of a team
on your own initiative
in a methodical manner.
Training is mainly on the job.
You would learn to use specialist software for scanning and converting documents, such as CAPSYS Capture or Xerox Docushare, as well as the document management system.
You may have to go on training courses that are specific to document control procedures in the industry that you are working in.
With experience you could be promoted to a senior or lead document controller where you would manage a team of document controllers in an organisation.
You could move on to become a document control manager, where you would lead a department.