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Introduction to Document Management Systems

Whether it is a small company or a large one and irrespective of which industry it is, there is a necessity to manage all important documents properly. Proper management of documents ensures that they are easily found and accessible whenever necessary.

To define document management, it can be stated that it is a system through which documents and information are processed, stored, and recovered. In the case of soft copies of these documents, it is done by putting them in folders on a computer device. In the case of hard copies of these documents, management is done by physically filing the documents away into folders.

Document management in the modern sense of the word involves using electronic means to secure different documents and files in a manner that makes its identification and retrieval easy. The variety of files that can be stores is no longer limited only to paper documents or scanned images. It ranges from things such as emails to video and audio clips as well as certain graphics and fonts that are used.

There are different software that have been developed with the sole purpose of document management. The main aim of using this software is to reduce the carbon print left by companies by reducing the amount of paper being used in offices. However, this was something that was quite hard to do because of the reliance on paper. New document management systems have made accommodations for electronic as well as paper document management. Additionally, these management systems have been adapted and altered to suit the needs of different companies when it comes to how the information that enters the company needs to be classified.

Document management systems have served to reduce the amount of paper being used. For example, cheques are only printed if absolutely needed else they are just saved and stored digitally. If there is a need for the physical cheque to be stored, it is done so in a secure private location.

Similarly in the case of advertising agencies, the creative team no longer has to physically draw, create, and maintain papers that have storyboards or presentations. Instead, these can be curated digitally and maintained in folders on computers from which it can be accessed at any time by whoever needs it.

Using an effective document management software makes work easier and improves productivity. Additionally, it has also been seen to reduce stress levels because of better organisation and therefore, increased productivity.

Open source for customer needs

If the computer program being used for document management does not have a protected source code, it is known as an open source software. The advantage of having such a software is that individuals can easily modify the code of the software according to their own requirements. Open source software is often considered a better alternative to the strict protected source software as the latter will not allow any modifications.

One particular subtype of open source document management software is the content management system. This system is a huge benefit for companies that require large amounts of data to be stored. Content management systems (CMS) allow for data to be stored and accessed remotely and further transport the data from one place to another.