From research and development, to contracts management, compliance policies, and more, every company has documentation outlining core business processes and procedures. But as documentation piles up, it’s a struggle to track and optimize data from a variety of different file types. With a paper-based records management strategy, it becomes nearly impossible to prevent expensive data entry and processing errors from using outdated documents that are clogging the system.
Today companies of all shapes and sizes are searching for a digital document management system to control, harness, and mine critical data from documents with more accuracy and ease. The right document control software can save time, money, and streamline daily business processes. But there are so many options to choose from that it can be hard to know which one is the best fit. Decision makers need to consider the following four features to determine the best document management software for their needs:
- User Friendly
Although it could instantly save them time and money, many companies delay adopting a document control software solution in fear of the learning curve. Many document management software systems are so incredibly complex, taking hours for end users to understand and stealing time from other business critical tasks. What companies need and want is a document management solution that takes very little time and effort to learn—something with high functionality and usability. And frankly, that can be hard to find.
So, a key factor to look for is a browser-based document management software system. The entire document repository is readily available at your fingertips from the convenience of the browser window. Plus, a simple search feature enables users to type in key data from the document they need, resulting in a list of pertinent, up-to-date records that the user is authorized to access.
- Scalable Pricing
Another hurdle for many companies, especially smaller ones, is pricing. Many document management solutions require the purchase of an expensive new software system with rigid pricing structures and unnecessary add-on features. Add training with support costs, and many companies are forced to opt with file cabinets and outdated on-site systems.
A cloud-based document management system provides a more scalable pricing solution that works for companies with different size, space, and storage needs. The cloud-based document control system also provides smaller companies with security options and features that they otherwise would not be able to afford with an on-site system. In the grand scheme of things, the cloud can give them better access to otherwise expensive features, at a more affordable price—and within a system that can grow with them, when they’re ready for it.
- Effective Functionality
The $1 billion question is: will it work as advertised? A document management software system can be a gamble for companies because they don’t want to spend thousands of dollars on a complex system that doesn’t end up delivering as promised.. When looking at the features list of a document management system, keep the following points in mind:
- Will it easily convert paper documentation into digital documents whose data can be mined for deeper insight and quick access to information?
- Does it have a powerful, easy-to-use search function that employees can use to get the documents they need quickly?
- Is it secure? If it’s a cloud-based document management solution, how many layers of security does it provide to keep out unauthorized users?
- Does it provide easy workflow automation with automatic update notifications to improve collaboration and reduce errors?
- Will it allow authorized users to access documents from mobile devices securely while on the road?
- Customer Support
Even an easy-to-use document management system may require a little help from time to time. In any document control system, it’s essential to check out the customer support team to find out if they provide around-the-clock support that resolves any issues as quickly and effectively as possible.
Finding the Right Document Management System
Fortunately, there are document management systems on the market that fit these requirements. With the right document management system, companies can gain insight that helps them streamline business processes, save money, , and boost collaboration internally within the company and externally with remote strategic partners. Considering these four criteria should help companies find the right document control software to fit their needs and take them to higher levels of efficiency.