Document Management System (DMS) – what should you know?


Document Management System in theory and practice

Document Management System (in short DMS) is an IT tool, which has been developed for the electronic flow of documents. Implementation thereof allows convenient and safe storage of all documents produced and accepted by the company. Documents are available in an electronic version, which minimises the risk of losing or destroying them and ensures swift, safe and easy access to all currently processed and archived resources of the company in compliance with held entitlements and authorisations.

The Document Management System and related electronic flow of documents allow eliminating the majority of issues related to traditional flow of documents. Documents are stored in the system, in a digital form, which releases companies from the obligation to create, manage and maintain a physical archive, as well as leads to getting rid of papers laying on desks, which often should not even be there in the first place. Therefore, it allows significantly reducing costs hitherto incurred on the purchase of stationery, rental of additional office space and employment of employees responsible only for document management. Not to mention decidedly bigger and more effective opportunities of ensuring proper level of safety and control over company documents.

Moreover, Document Management System facilitates moving around the company archive – necessary documents can be found within seconds, which accelerates work and positively influences effectiveness and productivity of employees, who can devote saved time to activities more important from the point of view of the enterprise than looking through physical documentation. Finally, due to Document Management System, valuable data stored by the company is better protected. It is possible due to the authorities with which the access to particular files is obtained only by selected system users.

Functionality of the best Document Management Systems on the market

As can be seen, Document Management Systems offer companies a lot of benefits. However, their scope depends on the functionality, which differs for particular solutions of this type available for sale. Good quality, prospective DMS should be a solution basing its operation on modern technologies among which Business Process Automation (BPA) and elements of Artificial Intelligence (AI) should be enumerated. Furthermore, it should offer high, adjusted to the enterprise’s needs, functionality and the highest standards of safety. Moreover, its advantage will be the possibility to control, that is, audit the flow of documents in the organisation (so-called auditability).

Document Management System should allow both, swift development and service of new scenarios of processes, as well as agile implementation of needed modifications, which will allow the company to adjust flows of documents to their current needs and external legal regulations. Special attention should be paid to modern and highly functional low-code platforms, which allow agile change management and developing enterprise-tailored, highly functional solutions. Additional advantage consists in the possibility of direct engagement in the process of developing software of business users, who, on the one hand, understand the process the best and, in the end, will use the developed so-called business applications, but lack background and specialist IT competences, as well as knowledge on the whole IT ecosystem of the company, including full awareness of all correlations between systems, with which Document Management System cooperates and communicates. Due to the so-called Citizen Assisted Development approach each party does what they specialise in, supporting each other and jointly achieving synergy in delivering IT solutions for business.

How to choose a functional and prospective Document Management System?

Good quality Document Management System should be simple and intuitive in use and offer access by standardised web interface, intranet and mobile devices. It should also be a solution with easy scalability, which will be able to be integrated with other systems used by the company without any issues. The following functions will also be useful: reporting, auto-documentation, adding attachments and manuals, viewing history of changes, text recognition (OCR), generating barcodes and integration of the system with office devices.

Especially larger companies should consider implementation of more advanced systems that combine document and business process management. The most innovative BPMS (Business Process Management System) low-code platforms base their work on digitalisation, automation and workflow mechanisms allowing efficient and effective implementation of the enterprise’s digital transformation. They are responsible for allocating tasks, servicing acceptance processes, routing of data and information between employees, company departments and IT systems.

The assumption that implemented IT solutions will be subject to frequent changes resulting in dynamic development and extension of functionalities of many DMSs, which thus, are distinguished with both, simplicity and swiftness of developing business applications, as well as effective change management, which is perfectly visible in the case of some of the aforementioned low-code platforms.