The Basics of Document Management

The Basics of Document Management

Document management or DMS (Document Management Software) has become an essential part of business and office management today. The technology involves the conversion of paper based documents into paperless or electronic documents or files, storing, managing and tracking them safely. This eliminates the use of papers thus saving office space and money for any business.

Normally, the system employs a document scanner to produce electronic images and documents. As such, document management is software that helps in the storage, management and tracking of electronic documents by a business or organization. There are many functions you can enjoy from these systems including the following:-

  • Storage of different types of documents including spreadsheets, PDFs, word processing files and files.
  • Use of individual keywords to search your documents from the entire library.
  • Limit the access of documents containing sensitive information
  • Monitor those viewing certain documents and monitor when this is done.
  • Keep a clear track on any edits done to your documents, know who did it and when.
  • Recover edited documents in their previous versions
  • Set and manage when outdated documents should be deleted
  • Access, edit and share relevant documents from different location with the help of mobile devices.

There are two types of document management systems and each of these has its own pros and cons. However, the benefits associated with this technology far outweigh the cost of implementation especially if done right. These two systems are:-

Self-Hosted DMS

This document management system involved the use of software that is stored within the organization or business’s own servers. This system is installed in the computers and allows for the storage of a huge number of files and documents depending with the size of the server. The software attracts a one-time cost which could include initial fee, license fee and installation fee in most cases. An annual support and upgrade charge is likely to be charged based on the service provider.

Cloud-Based DMS

Unlike self-hosted systems, cloud-based document management involves the storage and access of files online in a provider’s servers. Users can log into the systems from anywhere as long as they have reliable internet connection in their computers and mobile devices. With this system of document management, businesses normally pay a monthly charge which is determined by the features and storage space required. Software maintenance and upgrades are handled by the system provider.

You should consider the pros and cons of these two systems and see which works best for you. Document management will help you cut the cost of operations while at the same time helping increase efficiency and productivity.