Document management systems are becoming a buzzword for Small and Medium-sized Businesses (SMBs) but can you really afford to gloss over what might be a great way to increase productivity and lower overhead costs? The short answer is a definitive: No. The long answer is more of a convincing argument as to how you can use an electronic document management software effectively and help free your company to grow. A great document management system (DMS) needs—in our opinion—a few things in order to be considered “great”. Among these is a great front-end scanning solution for grabbing documents and making sure they are correctly classified, indexed, organized, and processed. You also need a system that can organize documents completely and thoroughly—one that’s capable of using rules and automation to make sure you don’t have to manually direct every piece of documentation and disrupt a smooth and intuitive workflow. Lastly, your document management software needs to be able to do more than just archive files. A truly robust DMS will OCR files so that you can search, edit, and retrieve them as needed for maximum productivity and access.
A Front-end Scanning Solution
Having a good scanning solution for your electronic document management system can seem like a no-brainer…or an afterthought. Instead, you want your scanning solution to be well-integrated and just as well thought-out as anything else you would use within your organization to help it be more productive and effective.
Great document management software needs to integrate well with a scanning solution that can serve as a helpful front-end for your document needs. Sure, you want a centralized system that can handle all of your existing documents as well—in fact that may be a great bulk of the work—particularly if you process lots of digital invoices, applications, or other documents that require instant retrieval and search. A scanning solution, however, can help you with incoming documentation—ensuring it gets the same integration and treatment as your existing material. The last thing you want is to pay for converting much of your office documents to electronic format only to have a sorry method for adding future materials into the same system.
Quick, Easy Document Organization
A great electronic document management system should be great at…well…managing documents! The primary purpose of any good document management system is to ensure your documents are organized, searchable, and retrievable. There are a lot of different aspects to this. For one, you want to make sure you can quickly and easily access the tools you need for using the system. That includes adding additional documents or just searching the system for what you need. The documents need to be smartly indexed so that you’re not stuck waiting on ridiculously long search queries or, worse, getting results that aren’t accurate or helpful.
Organization of documents is paramount regardless of whether the system is on a local server, or served via the cloud. In an office environment, you need everyone to be able to access the necessary features to keep the system up-to-date and accurate with information, and you need the security required to ensure access is granted in the right way to the right personnel.
Electronic Document Management Means Editable Documents
A great electronic document management software will let you edit and adjust digitally-scanned files. You’re not going to be content with a system that simply PDFs everything you have and lets you search. The ability to edit your digital docs means that, for the first time, your entire office or organization has a resource of files that can ramp up your productivity and allow you to move forward with approvals, edits, and collaborative work in a way not possible in a paper-based environment.
More than just editability, however, you want your document management system to do a great job at OCR. That means documents are scanned and transferred with a high degree of success. Lots of companies have this feature, but that’s a lot different from having it and ensuring it works well in a variety of circumstances. A good PCR system can turn your DMS into something truly great and powerful—which is why it’s on our “must-have” list.
Wrapping It Up
If you’re just looking for an archival system, you’ll have much success with just about any software on the market. If you want a truly powerful, yet flexible, electronic document management system that can help you stay organized, look for all these traits, and ensure you’re not selling your company, or yourself, short. We’re obviously biased towards ContentCentral and believe it has all of the features above—and then some. As for a front-end scanning solution, it’s going to be very hard to beat CapturePoint, which sets a new bar for ease-of-use, scalability, and scan automation.