Do you deal with a lot of documents in your business, both electronic and paper? Filing, sorting, and organizing important business documents can consume a lot of time. You can make it easier on yourself by going paperless and investing in an effective document management system (DMS). Imagine how much time you could save if you or your employees didn’t have to sort through thousands and thousands of pieces of paperwork every day.
In this article, I will detail some of the many ways a DMS can benefit you. I will cover these key points that show why file management is so important:
- It provides security
- It saves you time and money
- It doesn’t require a database
What is a document management system?
Before I unveil more information about how file management can benefit your enterprise, you need to know the basic principles of a DMS.
A DMS allows you to electronically upload paper files—via a scanner—to your computer. You can then easily store, organize, and track important files.
They are simple systems to use, but most DMS contain a plethora of features that can help to elevate the efficiency of your business. To keep it user-friendly though, some programs allow you to file your electronic files as if you were filing your paper files. For example, the interface contains folders, cabinets, drawers, but instead of manually sifting through folder after folder looking for the relevant paper file, you can just use the search engine within the DMS to find the document you need.
How can a document management system benefit you?
1. Provides security
Cyber breaches, office theft, fires, and flooding all pose a threat to your files. Thankfully, a DMS prevents hackers from snagging important information from your electronic files. Plus, scanning paper files onto your computer and into a DMS prevents uncontrollable events like fire, floods, and theft from ruining your documents.
When you use a DMS, you can check to see who has worked on which files. You can also see when someone accessed the files. It’s also possible to grant employees access to specific files. You can choose which documents you want your employees to see and which remain private. It is essential today to have appropriate security measures in place to ensure that only authorized people can access your businesses documents.
2. Saves you time and money
A DMS saves you time and money by:
- a) Compiling important information
Don’t feel like searching through your folders, cabinets, and drawers to find the information you need? A DMS can compile the information you need for important reports like inventory, for example.
- b) Requiring less hands-on work
Without a DMS, you have to ask your employees to run a report. This can be a time-consuming task. However, with a DMS, you can use the search engine to pinpoint viable information, which takes less time. Your employees can then be free to do other essential tasks.
Without a DMS, it’s easy for employees to misfile certain records. A DMS makes it easy to access all files. You won’t have to worry about files getting lost because the search function can easily locate them for you.
3. Monitored and increased access
Don’t feel like going into work? You can access the documents within a DMS from wherever you are at any time as long as you have a Wi-Fi connection. Your employees can do the same.
Remember that the security measures can prevent people without permission from accessing or changing the files. You won’t have to worry about someone taking advantage of their permission to access certain files either because you can monitor the files closely. A DMS will show you who accessed the files and altered the data.
What are some important features to look for?
It’s vital to find the right DMS for your company. Here are some essential features to look out for:
- You don’t need a database
- You need a search engine
- You need PDF compatibility
Let’s see why these features are so important:
1. You don’t need a database
You may be thinking, “Isn’t a database essential when it comes to storing documents?” It turns out that there are a couple of reasons why you should consider looking into a DMS that doesn’t have a database.
- a) Some software may not be compatible with a DMS that requires a database. For example, Google Drive may not support your files.
- b) It can be difficult to transfer your documents to another DMS if you decide to switch.
- c) If the database is damaged, you may lose all your files.
The important features that some database operated DMS companies boast of don’t even require a database. You can still access similar features—tracking, the safekeeping of documents, flexible use, to name a few—via a DMS that doesn’t have a database.
2. You need a search engine
Do you want to spend a lot of time typing in keywords to find a document? Probably not. A high-end search engine will allow you to find your document within seconds. There’s no need to search through endless lists of reports.
3. You need PDF compatibility
It’s common for corporations to send official documents in PDF format. You can save time by using a DMS that provides the essential PDF tools that allow you to add notes, stamp, bridge together two files, or break up PDF files into different parts.
You may also want to look for a DMS that allows you to store your files on the cloud and that has a competent scanning system.
A DMS can help to improve the overall efficiency of your company. See how Life Hack has introduced some great ways to improve the company’s efficiency. It can save you and your employees time by compiling important information together. This ultimately gives your employees the opportunity to work on something more valuable and worthwhile.
It can also free up space in your office. If you have rows and rows of paper files, you can upload them into a DMS without having to worry about security.
Not only can you grant certain people access to specific documents, but you can also track and monitor who made changes to which document.
Organized, secure files will help to improve the total efficiency of your business.