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The Most Comprehensive Introduction to Document Management

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Businesses nowadays are up for new challenges, and one of those challenges is transferring from the world of hard-copy printed documents, to a digital world of PDF files. Technology has a huge influence on our lifestyle, and businesses nowadays are adapting to it. Paper is becoming excessive, wasteful, and frankly, too expensive. That being said, document management systems are the new trend in business. Simply put, document management system is a "software tool that allows you to store and keep track of digital documents". That is the basic and most simple explanation. But there are much more things you need to know.

Part 1What Is Document Management and Its Benefits

project management document templates

A more complex explanation to the term document management is "the processes and procedures your organization uses as it pertains to capturing, storing, securing, and retrieving information on a daily basis". Thanks DMS, businesses can use digital files with ease. Here are some benefits of using document management systems.

  • Reduced storage space, as your entire data is now stored digitally. There is no need to pay commercial properties for storing your documents. File cabinets, boxes, and storage bins are thing of the past
  • Document management also improves the security of the company by providing better control over your documents. Access to the document can be easily controlled for different groups or individuals
  • Retrieving documents is also easier. A simple search will bring up all the documents you need. Instead of going through file cabinets with hours, you can find the document you need in a matter of minutes
  • Document management systems nowadays offer great integration with third-party software, eliminating redundant data. Some DMS software tools support email integration
  • As a result of all previously mentioned benefits, you can get better collaboration with your clients and employees
  • And the most important benefit is you save time and money in a number of ways

Part 2Top 5 Systems for Document Management

1. PDFelement for Business

open source document management

One of the best software tools for document management is PDFelement for Business. It becomes the most popular and best software tools thanks to the robust set of features. And in the same time, the price of the software makes it affordable and easily attainable by everyone. The price is much lower than similar competitors, and there are even more features. Here are some:

  • Editing PDF documents with ease
  • Convert any type of document into a PDF document
  • World class OCR technology that recognizes 20 languages and searches body, title, and tags of documents
  • Merging several PDF documents into a single file
  • Manage documents with annotations, highlights, sticky notes, and comments
  • Multiple platform support, app available for iOS
  • Protect your documents with redaction tool, black out sensitive text and images

2. GRM Document Management

cloud document management

This software focuses mostly on providing more storage space, locations, and extension of the product line. GRM comes with some great features like global transparency, consolidated structured and unstructured data, automated workflow management thanks to eForms design application, and much more. One of the best features is the ability to archive legacy data.


  • Can capture documents from many different sources
  • Specialized solutions for different industries
  • Training and implementation included in the initial price


  • No on-premise hosting option available
  • Designed mostly for enterprises, not small and medium companies

3. Alfresco Document Management

alfresco document management

Alfresco is an open source alternative for document management systems. Similar as GRM, Alfresco has enterprises in mind as its clients. And while there are great features for enterprises like web content management, image management, document management, and content repository, small and medium businesses are left outside.


  • The software provides you with revision from every step of the process
  • Every change in the document is recorded, and you can get the version
  • The software is easy to customize


  • Changes in the security system settings require an administrator control
  • The APIs are incoherent
  • While customization is easy, the whole software is more complex and requires a steep learning curve

4. Cintas Document Management

pinpoint document management

A document management company that operates globally, Cintas are appreciated for their reliability. While they do not work with digital documents much, Cintas excels in shredding sensitive documents and make them disappear. Committed to the security of your documents and confidential paperwork, Cintas allows you access to store materials easy and quick. They also offer wide range of formats for your documents, including CD and DVD copies, external hard drive, memory stick and much more.


  • Extremely reliable company with many years of experience in the field
  • Efficient and safely shredding of sensitive documents
  • Onsite, offsite, and drop-off options that will accommodate every client's need of paper shredding


  • Lousy customer service
  • You cannot choose the size of the shred for your document destruction

5. Xerox DocuShare

document management

Xerox has been in the printing business forever. And now it seems like the company is entering the world of digital and paperless office as well. Their relatively new product is DocuShare, a document management tool that allows review and approval of documents. The strength of DocuShare is that it vastly improves collaboration and workflow, and if you have Xerox printer/scanner, things go as smooth as possible.


  • You can index documents, and easily find them for retrieval later
  • Content is accessible from anywhere and at anytime
  • DocuShare can manage several documents at the same time


  • The price is too high for small and medium businesses
  • There is no good search feature, the software relies on indexing
  • There is no support for different languages

Part 3 Tips for Document Management

No matter which document management software you chose, there are a number of ways you can utilize it more. To improve how you use the software, here are some tips to help you

  • Talk to employees and explain to them how important it is to make the transition to digital world
  • Schedule a training session to teach users how they can utilize the software
  • Scan all your paper documents even before you make the jump to digital world. This will prepare you for what comes next
  • Utilize the customer support. Rely on customer support as much as you need
  • Check in with your staff regularly to see how they progress with the software you use.
Wondershare Editor

Posted by to Document Management | Follow @AudreySGoodwin
Published: Dec 09,2016 16:44 pm / Updated: Jul 06,2017 15:11 pm

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