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Electronic Document Management System – Why Do We Need It Now

Apr 22, 2020 | By: Pratip Biswas

8 Minutes Read

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How Important Are Documents For A Business?

The answer is simple- it is extremely significant. From the beginning of the modern industry, documents have become the glue that keeps the various companies, and businesses together. And today the number of paperwork a business has to handle has increased so much that separate electronic document management systems have to be deployed just to keep track of valuable paperwork. 

With the increase in documents to handle, technology has also progressed a lot. And as a result, we have in hand some latest technology of electronic document management systems that are speeding up the entire process. But despite the speed and accuracy, how useful are these methods? 

EDMS: The Things We Know, And The The Things We Don’t

What is an electronic document management system?

If you want the basic definition, then it is a “software-based system that is designed to digitally manage all paperwork of a corporation, speeding up the process and reducing management cost and time.” 

But is the basic definition all? Or is there more to it than what meets the eye?

Sure on the surface level, it is just a document management software. But it’s effects and benefits run deep. The importance of maintaining proper documents is known to us all. Using a system like this only enhances the benefits, and adds a few benefits of its own. 

However, that is for a normal situation. Today in this scenario, when all of us have to work from home, EDMS has become even more necessary. But why is that? What are some other reasons that have increased the popularity of the electronic document management system market? Before getting into the details about the features, let’s take a look at why digital paperwork management has become the need of the hour.

EDMS In The Business Sector: The Need Of The Hour Or An Overreaction?

Let’s keep aside the basic reasons for electronic document management system integration and think about the situation right now. 

Due to the global pandemic, most of us have been advised to work from home. While there are many different tools for making this entire process easy, such as video conferencing, time tracker, etc. keeping track of important documents have become even harder. 

Just imagine this scenario- during work from home, you realize that for the next meeting with the clients, you require a specific set of documents. You remember you have those documents, but you don’t remember where. And suddenly you remember, that those documents are in your office drawer, safe, but out of reach. And the worst part, you don’t have any digital copies. 

Problems that I have faced?

As a business owner, I have faced many problems regarding paperwork management. From losing important papers to not being able to use the right document at the right time, these are issues every businessman faces daily. And when times like these roll around where we are all stuck at our homes, digital document management software for office documents becomes even more important. 

The current global situation makes it look like the world is in grave danger. Whether that is true or not, that is yet to be revealed. But what is true is that in a situation like this, the increasing importance of EDMS is not simply an overreaction, but the need of the hour. 

So now that you understand how a digital system for document management is, in fact, a “need”, not a “want” for your business, it’s time to look at the features you’ll need in the EDMS. based on our experience of developing custom electronic document and records management system software I’ve taken the liberty to compile a list of features you should look for.  And if you need any more help, then you can always contact us!

Electronic Document Management: The Features That Make It

There’s no doubt that without the right features, no system is worth spending time and money on. And that’s why before you start the implementations, you need to figure out the features you need in the digital system for document management.

Here is a list of basic features every popular software in the electronic document management system market includes. However, do remember that when you choose to develop a custom system for your business, you can always change these features up. 

A. Workflow Automation Made Easier

Automating the workflow means to design, development, and execution of business inner workings to make it faster and more automatic. Reducing manual labor means that more work gets done in a shorter amount of time with little room for error. 

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When it comes to the question- “whether you should integrate a paperwork handling method on your business platform?” The answer should be yes. This method is created to make document handling much easier for the employees. With the right software in place, you won’t have to worry about misplacing important office documents. 

Having an EDMS also means that you don’t have to worry about taking care of the stacks of files and paperwork, filing them manually, and keeping a list of which documents belong where. When it comes to workflow automation, an electronic document management system makes everything a lot easier than you can ever imagine. 

B. Compatibility with the current system

By now you might be wondering- “I already have a system in place for managing in-house paperwork. Why should I get another?”

No matter what current online system you might be used for handling paperwork, the integration of automated systems is only going to enhance their benefits.  

Getting a digital document management software doesn’t mean that it will clash with your current system. Document management systems are only designed to blend in with the current system and enhance the features.  So despite what system you might have right now, implementing electronic document and record management systems will only increase its efficiency. 

C. A System That Scales With The Company

There is a vast difference between the number of documents a business has to handle at the beginning of their journey and after 10 years of being in the business. And that’s why you need a DMS for the company, that will scale with it. 

Indeed, most of the technology you were using at the beginning will not fit the increasing demands and requirements after a few years. And as the number of documents increases, having a scalable system to manage paperwork seems a lot more crucial.

The best electronic document management system can accommodate the increasing demands of a growing business, making the entire process a lot more swift. This way the process becomes faster and enables the organization to grow without any roadblocks. 

D. Easy sharing and uploading documents

The main purpose of these systems is to store and share documents easily. So it is a no brainer that the right system would have an easy uploading and sharing option. 

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Not all of the document is going to be in soft copy. And that’s why most systems come with a feature that lets the users upload scanned copies on the software. The perfect system will also have upload options from access points, such as cloud storage, scanned copies, phones, and computers alike. 

Once uploaded, these files need to be shared. And for that, there should be easy sharing options such as attaching the file on email, sending them over messaging platforms, etc. The entire point of having a document management software is to make the flow of sharing and uploading documents online easy and smooth. 

E. Collaborative and Version Control

A business venture is a matter of teamwork, with multiple employees and employers working on projects. In such a scenario, it is necessary for the software in the electronic document management system market to have a collaboration feature. 

Enabling users to work together on the system means that editing and finalizing paperwork doesn’t need a whole lot of time. This speeds up the entire operation, freeing up a whole lot of time for the employees to take on other duties. 

When more than one person works on a document, edit record control becomes necessary. This way the users can check out the edit history of the file and recover the older reports when needed. This is a straightforward way of keeping up the file integrity without any discrepancies… 

F. Restrictive access security

Not everyone needs to see every document. 

Based on the company hierarchy, you should be able to restrict access to the system for particular documents. This feature enhances security on the system, maintaining the dignity of business data. 

Just as you are going to restrict access for some documents for safety, you need to integrate the important components on your system. These features range from automated backup to secure web portal and login access. Without proper surveillance integration, the entire system will not be able to handle all the business documents as efficiently. 

G. Automatic file indexing in an electronic document management system

Document management software without any kind of indexing is going to be of no use. It is the ease and efficiency of finding documents that make this kind of system worth integrating. And that’s why when searching for the right system, always look for one that comes with automated file indexing. 

The automatic listing is based on a folder-based method that can be sorted based on different types of file details, such as- date and time of upload, keywords, etc. with proper indexing, the document processing speed will only increase. 

H. Metadata for easy search and filter

During document uploads, the user should be able to incorporate important keywords and details on the documents. Some examples of this are-

  • Time and date of file creation
  • People who have access to it
  • Details indicating what kind of file it is

Metadata makes it convenient for administrators and users to find documents and check them. They can use the filter feature to find the files with particular metadata and begin revising. The efficiency is one of the many reasons why these aspects are so essential for an electronic document management system, whether it is for the pharmaceutical industry, IT industry, and any other industry.

I. Offline editing and reviewing

An offline review and editing option on the system will help the users to access the database even when there’s no internet. It not only speeds up the process but enhances the quality of the entire system as well. 

data analyzing 3

Despite the easy availability of cyberspace, there might be times when the user might not have any internet available. And for those times, having an offline document review and editing feature is going to be more important for the business.  

J. Multi-device support

None of us are sticking to using only one device when it comes to working. We are using multiple devices, like our desktop, laptop, and smartphones. And as a result, there is a raising need for multi gadget support for all types of software, and software in the electronic document management system market is not an exception. 

Since the work from the home situation has made it a little tricky for us to access the documents easily, having multi-device support can work in our favor. Being able to edit and review documents on the go is emblematic of speed and efficiency, and the business has to take advantage of it.

End Thoughts On Electronic Document Management System

So what’s your final thought on electronic document management systems?

The truth is, with the growth in telecommunication, we have to ensure that our company grows as well. The modern market is changing every day, and surviving in it is becoming quite laborsome. And in this high demand scenario, implementing electronic document and record management systems is not only a choice but also a requirement. 

So don’t hesitate. Once you have all the paperwork straightened it’ll be one less worry for you to deal with. Remember that business growth is easy to achieve once you have integrated a document management system.

Pratip Biswas

Pratip Biswas

Founder, Unified Infotech

I am an Entrepreneur and a Tech Geek with more than 1500 successful projects launched. I share my experience through my love for writing and help other entrepreneurs reach their business goals.

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