Only a business owner can understand the environment in which his business operates. Technology has brought about many positive reforms in the business sector but has also brought about some challenges. No matter what industry you are engaged in, data and documents are the backbones of every business. Without these data, companies cannot exist. Hence, having the right Document Management Software for your business is paramount.
Let's dive deep into the topic and understand what Document Management System Software is all about.
What is a Document Management Software?
A Document Management System (DMS) is a system or software to centralise all your documents, like invoices, purchase orders, employee files, contracts, policy documents, marketing artefacts, artworks, CAD drawings, and more from multiple locations across the organisation.
A Document management system makes it simple to categorise documents and automate workflows. It provides document and data security, access control, centralised storage, document audit trails and streamlined search and retrieval.
Professional document management software with automated workflows, document control and user-rights management increases the efficiency of a company's processes. However, the most crucial step while selecting the ideal document management system is to thoroughly evaluate your organisation's requirements, whether you want an on-premises DMS, a cloud-based solution or a mix of both (Hybrid DMS).
What is the DMS used for?
A document management solution is a data storage system that enables businesses to access, edit and share documents efficiently and securely. This helps in increased productivity and reduces the risk of errors and loss of important business documents. Moreover, these document management applications and systems allow easy access to your business documents anywhere and anytime, making collaboration and remote work much more accessible and manageable.
Types of Document Management Software
There are three types of leading Document Management Software that organisations commonly use to store their documents. They are Cloud-based DMS, On-Premise DMS and Hybrid DMS. However, Cloud Document Management is more popular as it makes it easy to access documents and provides more data-operating freedom.
A cloud-based document management system is a highly secure system designed to store, track, and manage electronic documents online (stored in the cloud). Cloud Storage Document Management enables businesses to access, edit and share documents efficiently and securely in the cloud servers. Companies using a cloud document management system no longer need to purchase and maintain expensive hardware and software. A cloud-based DMS system ensures you keep your documents even if your hardware is damaged or stolen. As a result, it helps in reduced cost, scalability, better security, greater efficiency, and lower carbon footprints. In addition, it streamlines business processes and approval processes, ultimately secures user access controls, has frequent automated back-ups, makes it easy to integrate with other applications, and provides world-class technical support. Cloud-based DMS, also known as a Web-based document management system, allows for collaboration among users, allowing multiple users to work on the same document simultaneously.
An On-Premises Document Management System (DMS) is a Data Storage and Data Management Software installed in a company's own servers, server rooms, or captive data centres. It helps businesses to store, manage, analyse, and monitor digital documents. It's ideal for companies looking for complete control over their documents with additional privacy and security. However, organisations must purchase and maintain expensive hardware and software to use this type of document management system.
A Hybrid DMS is a combination of both cloud-based and on-premise software. A hybrid system is generally used when an organisation wants special control over certain parts of its data.
What are the core features of a cloud-based document management system?
Safely Access from Anywhere:
Cloud Document Management System can be accessed via any modern web browser over an internet connection. It is completely secure from snooping hackers, and your connection is always SSL encrypted. No installation is needed.
Work Offline with Offline Sync:
Your Documents and Folders can be kept synchronised offline. When you are connected to the Cloud Computing Document Storage through the Internet, your changes are synced to the cloud. When you are offline (e.g. on an aeroplane), you can continue working on your documents. Offline Sync is Available for Mac, Windows and Linux.
Access from Mobile Devices:
The cloud document management system comes with companion mobile apps for iPhone, iPad and Android devices. These apps allow you to search, browse and view documents. It will enable offline access as well. Mobile access only works with the cloud version.
Full-Text Search and Metadata Search:
Cloud Based DMS system makes scanned documents full-text searchable, using Optical Character Recognition (available in English, Hindi, Tamil, Gujarati, Chinese, Arabic, Bahasa Malaysia, Bahasa Indonesia and Thai). Apply custom metadata fields to documents to enable advanced search and filtering.
Connect with Microsoft Outlook & Gmail:
Cloud-based document storage software includes a plugin for Microsoft Outlook and Gmail (including Gsuite email). This file format allows you to directly file emails and attachments within an email message.
Edit in Microsoft Office:
Cloud-based document storage allows direct editing within Microsoft's Excel, Word and Powerpoint software packages. Any changes made within any of these packages to a document can directly create a new version of the document within the DMS.
Audit Trails & Versioning:
A new version is created whenever a document changes. User has the option of viewing older versions or downloading older versions. Also, all actions on a document (read, download, edit etc.) are captured in an Audit Trail along with username and timestamp.
Workflows and Document Approvals:
Cloud computing document storage can route documents for approvals via a built-in workflow engine. These workflows can be custom-built as per your requirements. For example, it is possible to have workflow processes have maker-checker flows, where a document only becomes visible once a checker has approved it.
No Constraints or Limits:
Generous limits on file sizes uploaded. Easily upgrade your storage space at a minimal cost. Easily increase the number of registered users.
Subscription-based Pricing Model:
The lower total cost of ownership, as you only have to invest in an annualised operational expense. No capital investment is needed. No need to buy any hardware or expensive 3rd party software licenses (all software runs on open-source platforms).
Cloud document management system for business is an appreciated advantage of modern technology. With all your business information being managed securely, you concentrate on your business with a stress-free mind.
So let us understand your Document management system requirements.
Most business owners get confused when selecting the right cloud document management system.
DMS as per the business model:
The first thing that needs to be considered is your business model and industry type. Suppose you are engaged in the manufacturing sector. You should choose a Manufacturing Document Management system to adequately maintain documents such as delivery forms, invoices, revision notices, purchase orders, etc. Other document storage systems include Legal document management systems for law firms and HR document management systems for HR-related services. Investing in an operation-based storage system is essential to merge well with your operations.
Access from Mobile Devices:
Mobile access is another factor to look for. Cloud-based storage system allows users to access files and folders from the provider's clouds. Hence, mobile access to these records can help your employees perform their jobs even from remote areas. This way, your operations will not be hampered.
Before purchasing any system, review the security conditions to know what firewalls and precautions your providers provide. Security breach incidents are increasing day by day. Even the most prominent industries, like Google and Facebook, fell prey to it. Hackers are constantly looking for ways to steal online data. Hence, this factor should not be overlooked at any cost.
Hybrid cloud storage:
Hybrid cloud storage is in trend these days due to the combined benefits of cloud and on-premise software. However, if you want special control over certain parts of your data, consider procuring a hybrid system.
Post-sale support and assistance:
It is also essential that your cloud-based management services provider is willing to provide you with constant post-sale support and help. If any issues are identified with the storage system, the same has to be taken care of by your provider so that your operations do not get impacted.
Cloud document management system providers should provide you with an easy way to upgrade your storage space and increase the number of registered users at a minimal cost. If you need more storage for new applications or if the amount of data you need to store goes up. This flexibility allows businesses to adapt to changing demands without investing in expensive hardware or worrying about running out of storage space. Additionally, cloud storage software typically offers robust security features to protect your data from cyber threats and data breaches.
Integration with other useful applications:
A cloud-based solution is typically much more integrated and connected. Integrating your DMS with daily apps such as Microsoft Outlook and Gmail (including Gsuite email) makes you work faster and more efficiently. This integration allows you to easily access and manage documents from within your email client, reducing the need to switch between multiple applications. Additionally, it enables collaboration and sharing of documents with team members in real-time.
Cloud Document Management enables metadata and keyword searches, making it easier to find documents and reducing the guesswork of document storage. However, teams must still agree on a coherent naming system to organise documents. Naming documents systematically and categorising them into folders will save time and increase productivity.
Backup and Recovery:
Cloud document management systems typically provide automated backups. Some providers offer disaster recovery services to ensure that documents are safe and can be quickly restored in case of any disaster.
Cloud Based storage for business is one of the appreciated advantages of modern technology. With all your business information managed securely, you concentrate on your business with a stress-free mind. Cloud-based document management solution typically offers fast and secure storage of documents, allowing organisations to access them when needed quickly.
What is a good document management system?
Reliable document management software is essential for any organisation that wants to streamline its document workflows, reduce paper usage, and improve the security and accessibility of its documents/information. When choosing a DMS Software, consider factors such as ease of use, scalability, integration with other systems, and safety. Look for a platform that offers a range of features to suit your business needs.
How much does Document Management Software Cost?
Document management software price ranges vary depending on the size of the company and the type of document management software they are looking for. However, a cloud document management system eliminates infrastructure maintenance and security responsibility and combines the services with an external service. While this reduces the cost and managing complex business documents on the spot, the company should still handle your data correctly. However, many document management systems in the market have different costs varying from business models to features as and when required. However, the range of document management software starts from as low as ₹15000 ($183) and as high as ₹14,00,000 ($17,078) per annum.
Top document management software providers
There is multiple document management software in the market, but each has pros and cons. These Document management software companies help businesses to create, store, manage, and access business documents online. Below are the top document management software providers.
Eisenvault is recognised as the machine learning-based best document management software trusted by several HR, accountants, Schools, Colleges, Hospitals, Legal teams, Governments, Manufacturing companies, and General Counsel. Their document management system offers rich features that help enhance collaboration and document security, allowing you to do your work easier and faster.
Zoho Docs is an online file management tool that complements collaborative workspaces or real-time availability of one another by securely storing, managing, and sharing files. It centrally stores all types of files that are accessible from anywhere at any time.
DocuWare provides cloud document management solutions and workflow automation software to digitise, secure and work with business documents, then optimise the processes that power the core of your business. For example, it quickly classifies documents and index information in just a few clicks.
OpenKM combines all features of document management, collaboration, distribution, and storage on a single platform. Complete control over enterprise content is made possible, security is improved through thorough activity logs, and document flow is preserved through clever automation.
Alfresco One DMS was made for managing corporate content. It can be installed locally or used as a cloud-based service. With enterprise document search, secure storage, OCR document processing, and intelligent document analytics, the software enables effective management of enterprise content.
Newgen OmniDocs provides an Enterprise Document Management (EDM) platform. It handles Scanned Document Images, Electronic Documents, Emails and Electronic Data Output from other applications equally efficiently and quickly.
FileNet document management combines enterprise content, security, and storage features with business process management capabilities. It provides document management and workflows that support capturing, managing, and sharing content.
M-Files document management system lets you automate your document-heavy work quickly and efficiently. It offers simple document management use cases and refined workflow automation to support your business processes and add value.
dMACQ Enterprise Document Management System has practical functionalities to reduce all your document and content management in a single platform. It enables rule-based workflows, digital and physical record management, document editing and collaboration, mini-warehousing module, content sharing & management.
In conclusion, document management solution has become an essential tool for businesses of all sizes in today's digital age. By streamlining document organisation, collaboration, and retrieval, DMS software can help business to boost productivity, reduce costs, and improve overall efficiency.