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Paper in the business world today is history. Running a business that still relies on regular paper documents is no longer viable. If you expect your company to improve in productivity, to be more efficient, and to overall improve the client’s experience, you will have to digitalize all of your documentation. But, once you switch from paper to computers, you will need some kind of system to manage all of this. Fortunately, document management systems do exist which are made especially for all kinds of businesses.

However, in 2024, there are probably over 100 such tools available online. Some are completely free while others are very expensive. One will offer a few features while another offers dozens of features. With so many different options available, it might seem impossible to pick the right one for your business.

To help you with that, we decided to provide you with all of the necessary tips for choosing a document management system for your company. Once you read through this article, we imagine you will have no trouble figuring this out.

1. Figure out your company’s needs

In the introduction of this article, we mentioned that this kind of software can differentiate by a lot. Some are optimized for smaller businesses while others for much larger.

So, if you want to make the right decision for a document management system, you will first have to figure out what your company needs.

If you do not see a reason why you should use this kind of software, maybe you do not even need one. But, if you are having a problem with logistics then you most probably do need this kind of tool to assist you.

To figure out exactly what your company needs, we suggest talking with your employees. Expand on the issues in hand and what exactly a document management system would help with.

Once you get a good idea of what this kind of software can do for you, you will have a much easier time finding the right one.

2. Look for an optimized user experience

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The software can provide a positive experience to the user only if it has been optimized thoroughly. Without such optimization the user will end up having a lot of issues, facing bugs, and may have trouble navigating throughout the tool.

Unfortunately, some developers still do not understand this and believe their software on optimized. Even if the tool is good, it becomes almost useless considering the bad user interface.

Why is this important? Well, if this is the first time you are going to be working with a document management system, you should be looking for one that has a proper user interface implemented. A user interface that has been thoroughly optimized to satisfy the user.

This kind of UI will help you understand and get along with the tool much sooner.

3. Version control feature

After looking through several different document management systems online, we have noticed one common feature that could be useful for any type of business. The ability to quickly go through different versions of one single document.

For example, if some of your coworkers have accidentally removed certain segments of a piece of document, with this feature, version control, you could even immediately revert those changes. Not exactly revert the changes, but get access to an older version of the document.

Web Imp suggests that document management systems use this as a form of a backup.

We are sharing this with you because we believe that every business should have access to a version control feature. So, if you end up seeing the software that does not offer such a feature, maybe you should consider a different one.

4. Workflow management

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A document management system is more than software where you can and edit all of your documents.

Although, it could be just that, depending on what you pick. However, I believe that you will not make such a decision after you read through this article.

This kind of tool should also provide you with the ability to manage the workflow in your business. What does this mean? Well, it means that you can easily assign a certain employee of yours to handle a task.

Here is an example. You need a certain Excel sheet to be reworked and updated with the correct information. For that to happen, you will need to assign some of your employees to do that. But, why waste time contacting in talking with your employees when you can just use this kind of system to assign them any task you want with just a press of a button.

This kind of feature does not just exist to make the boss’s life easier. It is made improve the productivity and efficiency of a business considerably. Every second wasted on communication and explanations is valuable. Reducing the time needed for such conversations or completely removing those conversations, your company will effectively become much more productive.

5. Security is essential

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All of these features I mentioned above are very useful, yes, but without a proper security implementation, all of those features are essentially useless. Without security, someone could easily reach into your system and steal sensitive data.

For any business, this kind of security breach is unacceptable.

Because of this, it is very important to look for DMS that provides the best security possible.

Microsoft SharePoint or Dropbox Business is one of those DMS’s that come with an effective layer of protection. Keeping all of your sensitive data and documents safe from the hands of your competitors or anyone else.

Keep in mind, security is essential, but it is not what you should use to make the decision. You will need to find a system that balances features and security. This is the most optimal choice.

So, with these five tips, we mentioned above, we hope that you will finally be able to find the right document management system to create the perfect paperless office.