Etrieve Content: Basic Navigation, Searching and Use

The Softdocs Etrieve platform combines document management, electronic forms and workflow automation functionality into an easily scalable, seamless enterprise content management experience. This product can be used by all departments that need to securely store documents and classify them as specific document types, apply values to keywords in order to file those documents and to quickly search for them to retrieve them later. Documents are accessed directly via the sub-product Etrieve Content. This article focuses on how to use Etrieve Content. For a more detailed overview of Etrieve, see this product page.  

The Etrieve Content Navigation overview below is kept at a high level. Further details are available in the User Guide provided by Softdocs.  

  • Log into Etrieve Content with your Davidson Single-Sign User ID at

  • You will now be presented with the Etrieve Content screen, which is composed of three areas, each to be covered in subsequent sections: Left Navigation - Searching and Tree Structure, Center - Document Panel, and Right Navigation - Key Word Viewing and Maintenance.



Left Navigation - Searching and Tree Structure

The left navigation contains three sections used for Searching, Viewing the File Tree, or interacting with the Recycle Bin.  


  • Searching
    • Searching can be as simple as typing text into the search box and hitting enter.  
    • However, more detailed searching can be accomplished by clicking on the three little triangles below the search box to expand the search feature.


    • This will allow the user to build out search criteria by selecting a field, and operator, and a value.  Multiple search criterias can be added
    • The File Tree will be be limited to only what documents meet the filtered criteria
    • To "reset" the filtered criteria, click on the word "Content" above the Search box

  • File Tree
    • The file tree can be used to navigate directly to a document.
    • Note that only the areas that the user is authorized to view are shown


    • Etrieve has been configured to display the tree structure as:
      • An "Area" in this case "Employees"
      • A file cabinet in this case the first two characters of the Employee Last Name
      • A drawer in this case the specific employee
      • A folder in this case a document category (as specified by HR)
      • The actual document, when selected, will appear in the Center Document Panel for viewing and/or action

  • Recycle Bin
    • When documents are deleted, they are sent to the Recycle Bin
    • Only authorized administrators have the ability to permanently delete a document from Etrieve Content.


    • The Recycle Bin will show the number of documents for that area (86 in this example)
    • Upon selecting the document, it can be restored to Etrieve Content by clicking the recycle arrow.
    • There is currently no search feature to locate documents in the Recycle Bin

Center Document Panel

The center panel is used to view a document selected in the left navigation.  The leftmost grouping of icons along the top are for adding new documents or pages, as well as splitting documents.  The center grouping of icons is used for changing the viewing of the document, editing the document or adding annotations.  The rightmost icons are for downloading, printing, sharing or sending the document to the recycle bin.



Adding Documents

  • The Paperclip.PNG icon will be activated if an area is selected in the left navigation, but no document is highlighted.  This will allow you to upload a document from your local file system.  

  • The Add_New_Page.PNG icon will allow you to add additional pages to an existing document from your local file system.

  • The Scan_New_Document.PNG icon will allow you to scan new documents from a local scanner.  Note that this requires a license.  If you need to utilize a local scanner attached to your workstation, please email to request a license.  

  • The Split_Document.PNG icon will allow you to split the currently-selected document into separate documents.  

Editing and Viewing Documents

  • The Zoom_doc.PNG icons allow you to zoom in and out of the document image.

  •  The Waffle.PNG icon will change the view from a single page to thumbnails of all document pages.

  • The hide_show_annotations.PNG icon will allow you to view and hide any annotations on the document.  See below for details on the Annotations Toolbar.

  • The Rotate.PNG icon will rotate the document image 90 degrees clockwise.

  • The Annotations Toolbar will allow you to add and edit various annotations on your document.



  • The image cleanup tool bar will allow you to edit the appearance of your document.



Downloading, Printing, Sharing and Deleting Documents

  • The download.PNG icon allows you to download the currently-selected document to your local file system.  

  • The print_doc.PNG icon will allow you to print the document or a subset using your workstation's printer drivers.

  • The Share.PNG icon will allow you to share the document either via email as an attachment or a URL.  Access to the URL will require that the recipient has security rights to view the document.  

  • The recycle.PNG icon will allow you to send the document to the recycle bin.  


Right Navigation - Key Word Viewing and Maintenance

The right navigation includes three sections for viewing and editing key fields, viewing and editing linked documents, and for reviewing the history of the document.


Key Fields

The Key Fields will vary for each document type, and are critical for proper filing of the document in the tree.  Provided you have the security settings to do so, key fields can be modified.  This may result in the document being refiled in the tree.  Any user that has the ability to view the document type can also view these key fields. 


Linking will allow related documents to be linked together.  Softdocs provides this tutorial on this topic.


The history will show all contact with the document from its creation.  By hovering over the row, a timestamp will be displayed.


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