How Do Document Management Systems Work?

2022-10-21 14:35:14

Imagine you've taken the plunge and decided to let your employees work from home. You can downsize your office and recruit new talent from anywhere else.

So how will those employees who demand flexibility quickly and easily access their work files without compromising company security?

These demands require an approach that's seamless, cloud-based, and secure. Installing a document management system can give you better control over your documents and reduce costs.

In this article, we explore how document management systems work. Let's dive in.

What Is a Document Management System?

Document management solutions are software solutions that allow you to store and manage documents digitally. A massive benefit of these systems is that users can share documents with others, no matter where they are in the world.

They also ensure the security and integrity of your documents. A digitisation project is an excellent investment. It enables your document management system's deployment on-premises or in the cloud.

Electronic document management systems enable businesses to store various data types, including the following:

  • Emails
  • Images
  • Videos
  • Presentations.

They also allow users to create searchable indexes from these files. This way, they can quickly find any specific file when needed.


How Secure Are Document Management Systems?

Document management systems keep your documents safe and secure, and their design explicitly ensures such.

The more people accessing a document management system, the less secure it will be if adequate security measures are not in place. Data security relies on users limiting sharing documents with unauthorised personnel and users not misusing their credentials to access company information.

Most good document management systems use role-based access controls. These allow you to assign specific roles for individuals within your organisation and will determine what kinds of documents they can access. For example, if you have an employee who needs access only to specific documents, you can restrict them from accessing other types of information. This precaution reduces the likelihood that someone outside their department will see sensitive data without authorisation.


What Are the Components of Document Management Systems?

When choosing a document management system, it's helpful to understand what makes up the system. Each component serves a specific purpose and ties into other parts of your workflow.

A document repository is a central location where all your documents are stored and can be either on-premises or cloud-based. It depends on your organisation's needs and preferences.

A repository typically includes an archive for long-term storage and a file share for short-term access to documents when users across teams or departments require them. Since working from home began, this has become the new norm.


Metadata Management

Metadata management helps users find relevant documents quickly, enabling them to get back to work faster. This part of the DMS lets users create metadata tags for categories such as the creation date and storage location.

Other searchable terms include keywords and make finding what they need much more effortless. This system is better than users manually searching through thousands or millions of files daily, making Metadata and its organisation act as an internal SEO for the company.



In simple terms, a workflow defines how information flows from one person/group/department within an organisation at any given moment based on specific criteria set by those who have authority over each step.

Gathering feedback is instrumental to any business and business connectivity, which is also part of a workflow that companies need to consider.


Valuable Benefits of Implementing a Document Management System

One of the many benefits of a document management system (DMS) is the reduction of paper storage costs. Not only because of the reduced physical space needed for storing documents but also because DMSs are more efficient than paper-based filing systems.

Reducing paper usage is also great for the environment and is essential in an age where compliance with environmental standards is vital.

By digitising your documents and storing them online, you can avoid the unnecessary copying and printing of numerous versions of files in different formats.

You'll also have more control over who has access to what information. These controls reduce security breaches, which could compromise confidential data or result in legal action against your organisation due to a failure to meet compliance regulations such as POPIA (The Protection of Personal Information Act 2013).


Digital Document Management Systems Simplify Workflow

Digital document management (DMS) systems are a great way to digitise and manage your documents, reducing the time spent on paper-based tasks and increasing efficiency.

A DMS allows you to reduce the risks to documents of:

  • Loss
  • Fraud
  • Duplication
  • Inaccuracy and
  • Inconsistency.

Digital document management systems are an easy way to digitise documentation and simplify workflow. Document Management Systems (DMS) further allow you to reduce the time spent on paper-based tasks and increase efficiency.


Document Management Services Are Important

Document management is a powerful tool to help your business become more efficient and productive. Knowing what kind of system will work best for your needs is helpful as so many options are available.

DMSs will also help your business comply with environmental laws and retain records required for regulations such as the Freedom of Information Act.

Contact us today to learn more about how our solutions can benefit you.