what is document management

What is Document Management?

Document management refers to the use of a computer system to store, track and manage electronic documents, as well as images of hard paper information captured using scanners. Countless modern companies make use of document management systems not just to manage their digital documents, but to gain the advantage of added security, centralized storage, access control and easy search and retrieval capabilities.

What Are the Advantages?

Compared to manually processing hard, physical files, digital document management reduces costs, while eliminating the risk of physical damage, human errors and retrieval mishaps. It also provides virtually unlimited space.

Although most companies maintain some sort of physical filing system for paper documents; these are becoming less and less common. In most instances, there’s no need to backup critical information on tangible sheets of paper, thanks to off-site cloud backup systems. These days, documents are almost always produced digitally and printed on paper only when absolutely necessary.

Relying on metadata (info that includes: titles, file descriptions, and various storage dates), document management tools can streamline workflows by providing:

  • Enhanced security via access control and specified editing rights for sensitive information
  • Easy search and retrieval, drastically reducing the time required to find and access the right documents
  • Improved collaboration since multiple users are able to work on documents simultaneously
  • Version control allowing multiple users to monitor validity and changes over time

Improved Regulatory Compliance

document management on laptopFor certain companies, compliance requirements for some documents can be very complex. Non-conformance can result in revoked licenses, fines and, in some instances, criminal or civil liability. State and federal regulations such as HIPAA and Sarbanes Oxley mandate strict privacy and security guidelines. Document management tools drastically reduce the risk of compliance issues.

Improved Disaster Recovery

Document management typically includes some sort of data backup and an instant disaster recovery plan. With digital archiving, you don’t have to worry about paper documents being destroyed in a fire or flood. With the right system, documents can be easily traced and tracked, reducing the likelihood of loss and misfiling.

Document Management Is Freedom

The painstaking process of manually handling and searching for documents is a huge wasteful time-suck. Most companies do not understand the needless pain of working in an antiquated paper-dependent office until they experience a world without it. In a matter of hours, they quickly realize that paper was responsible for keeping manual labor alive in a white-collar world.

Without a modern document management system in place to secure, automate and potentiate every document’s value, companies cannot achieve their full potential. In simple terms, document management prevents opportunity costs. Instead of wasting time handling hard documents, employees are able to use their talents to help a company profit and grow.

While critically important, document management systems are just a part of comprehensive workflow innovations that help businesses gain a competitive advantage in their marketplaces. If you want to avoid opportunity costs, reduce waste and streamline your workflow, you need to optimize every facet of your company’s daily operations.

Would you like to secure your business’s systems and streamline its operational efficiencies? Fisher Technology can help. We manage servers, cloud environments, computers, network equipment, mobile devices and mobile applications. We can help safeguard your company from malware, hackers and ransomware while streamlining your daily operations with electronic document automation and budget-friendly workflow solutions. Contact us to learn more.

For more on electronic document management, be sure to read our blog: Top 3 Electronic Document Problems

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