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A Quick Guide to Choosing a Document Management System

3 minutes read - October 12, 2022 - by Yondu Team
A document management system (DMS) is crucial in business. This article discusses what a DMS is, how it works, what its benefits are, and how to choose one.

A company’s internal documentation can get too unwieldy to maintain; hence, businesses should know how to choose a document management system (DMS) to help streamline these processes.

There are many factors to consider when choosing a DMS, including the size of your business, the amount of data you need to manage, and the internal processes you implement.

This article will teach you the steps to choosing a DMS and its benefits.

4 Common Challenges Faced by Companies Without a DMS

Businesses that manage large amounts of documents should employ a DMS. Otherwise, these challenges may crop up. 

  1. Inefficiencies

You may find many documents and files stored in different places. This disorganization makes it hard for employees to find the information they need quickly, so they waste time looking for these resources or remembering where they put them last time.

  1. Poor collaboration

Open and easy access to needed information is essential to building a collaborative work environment. Without it, important documents might get siloed, with additional time wasted seeking permissions to access the file.

  1. Delayed documents

Documents not easily accessible, searchable, or shareable may delay projects because they are unavailable when needed. In such cases, you may need to print these documents and route them to their signatories, which can cause chokepoints.

  1. Difficulty with compliance

Companies must adhere to strict processes when complying with the law and keeping their industry certifications like ISO. These compliance concerns typically rely on stringent audits and checks. Physical documentation can often cause trouble in the audit trail if these papers go missing or have not been properly routed. 

What is a DMS?

A DMS is a tool that helps you organize and manage documents and files as part of your business processes. The benefits that a DMS provides are diverse.

Cloud storage for documents

Cloud storage allows anyone to access documents wherever and whenever they need them as long as they have an internet connection. This accessibility is beneficial, especially for those with a remote or hybrid work arrangement.

Security and authorization control

A DMS also allows businesses to set up security and authorization measures to provide specific people with file access. This functionality enables companies to manage data access without compromising security.

File synchronization

Suppose you need to work on a project with other people. In that case, file synchronization helps teams work on the same file while providing updates later for those accessing the document.

Iteration history

An iteration history displays the name of personnel opening and working on a file, which is helpful for auditing should problems with that file arise.

Indexing and keyword search

Proper indexing allows easy retrieval of files even without knowing the exact title. All it takes is entering keywords on a search field.

How to Choose a Document Management System

  1. Define your business objectives

Businesses need to define their objectives before choosing a DMS because a poorly chosen system can be highly costly and detrimental in the long run.

On the other hand, a good DMS will allow you to create, store, and access documents quickly as long as you set clear parameters about your needs.

  1. Create flowcharts of business processes and their necessary documents

Understanding your business processes will assist you on how to choose a document management system effectively. Here, you could use flowcharts to ensure proper communication of those processes and serve as an easy way to explain them to new employees.

  1. List your requirements

It’s in your best interest not to underestimate the importance of an old-fashioned list when determining your needs. This checklist will also allow you to indicate the DMS features you may want to prioritize. It’s a simple strategy for anyone who is unsure how to choose a document management system.

  1. Make a shortlist of software options

Once you have a list of must-have DMS features, you can shortlist the different software options that fit your needs. 

  1. Contact a reliable vendor

After picking the best solution from your shortlist, it’s time to contact a reliable vendor who will help your business adopt the new system. Yondu is a reliable partner, providing holistic technologies like DMS for over two decades. A team of Yondu experts will help you implement your DMS seamlessly within your organization.

  1. Communicate, implement, and monitor

When choosing a DMS, you want a system that effectively assists your company’s operations. Here, communicating with your employees is essential to success. After all, getting the buy-in from employees is one of the best ways to educate them about the new software. Simply put, communicating the fundamentals of DMS leads to its smooth implementation.

You’ll also need to monitor how well the software works for you.

A Document Management System Spells Smooth Operations

Choosing a DMS starts with understanding what your business needs. Being aimless or having no clear expectations and preparations can spell disaster for your DMS project.

If you are interested in learning more about DMS and adopting it, Yondu experts have you covered. Visit our website for more information and book a consultation with us today.