By Hellen Lubanga
Now that we’ve established the importance of having a Document Management system as well as the effects of not having one, the next logical step would be to determine what features one needs in a document management system so as to fully extract value from its use.
It is important to remember that not every management system is the same, so before settling on a service provider always evaluate your requirements and align them to the solutions that the various systems promise to offer.
With that in mind, the top 5 basic features a Document management system should include are:
1. Collaborative features
All over the global Work has been moved online, this is seen by the rise in the number of companies shifting to work from home structures.
By choosing a cloud-based DMS system companies to allow for business activities to go on uninterrupted as employees can access files no matter their location. Departments are also able to work on one project simultaneously in real-time for as long as they have viewing and editing rights to the document. Some DMS systems even go as far as allowing giving staff members the option to work together while hosting video chats and conference calls over the System.
2. Work process automation features
Work automation features enable a business to set up systems that dictate and organize the flow of information for specified document types. For instance, leave day approvals to tend to follow a systematic process depending on the organization, and have steps that need to be complete in a pre-outlined order before moving on to the final approval stage.
Let us use a practical example say a team member submits a request for leave days; but before the request can be given the green light, the employee would have to fill out a physical form, which then has to be taken to the supervisor for approval, before being sent to the HR for duplication, signing and stamping. After all, this is done, the documents would then be sent back down the same chain which takes time as well. Now imagine this at a larger scale with various processes and departments, it would be a highly ineffective use of company resources.
A digital system, on the other hand, would only take a few minutes for communication to be shared between departments i.e. with a few clicks the employee would send the leave approval request to their supervisor using a pre-existing template. The supervisor’ upon seeing the request would respond accordingly thereby prompting a notification to be sent to HR. Lastly, the HR (also using the DMS) would then acknowledge the response which in turn would send a notification to all parties based on whether or not the leave was approved. This all would happen in a matter of minutes as the processes are digitized and therefore the response is immediate. Not to mention all parties would be able to view how far the process has reached in real-time.
3. Data security features
Any DMS system you choose to go with must have top-tier features to avoid security breaches resulting from leaked data. This includes but is not limited to; access control, Activity logs, end-to-end encryption, audit trails, and document version backups when editing is done to existing documents.
With the recently introduced data security laws, it is now more important than ever to ensure that access to your data is air-tight to minimize risks of a run-in with the regulatory authorities. The systems security should also integrate with the existing security requirements and be simple to administer, update and track whenever the need arises
4. System Integration features
The system you decide on should integrate with your existing work tools seamlessly. Considering that the DMS will be a part of your everyday processes it is important you make sure that its features support your existing systems. This is heavily influenced by the industry you are in as integration requirements vary from industry to industry.
For instance, you would want to use a system that can support the various document formats you already use such as PDF, Word Doc, DWG, EPUB, etc. The same goes for your accounting and receipting software, Coding languages, and the like.
5. Simple search and filter features
Search features enable users to track down needed data quickly without having to dig through the various files saved on the software. On most Document management systems, the search feature appears as a magnifying glass symbol at the top or bottom sections of the screen. The system should also offer a filtering option that can allow you to categorize your search based on pre-applied tags such as the properties, contents, or details of the file.
With Cadtech Services Limited you can receive an established document management solution to assist with streamlining company processes with our cloud-based system, top security, and feature-rich software. Want to know more about how we can help you start your digitization journey? Reach out to us today and achieve your dream of a paper-free work environment.