Document Management Systems Overview
What are Document Management Systems?
Document Management Systems (DMS) provide enterprises with the capability to digitally capture and convert documents and files. Features of document management software may also extend to document storage, search and retrieval, and sharing. DMS reduces enterprise dependence upon space-consuming document printing hardware, printed paper, and file drawers.
Document management systems share featural overlap with Enterprise Content Management (ECM) or Digital Asset Management (DAM) platforms. However, document capture and manipulation is central to document management. This includes imaging, file type conversion, versioning, and metadata management, with document editing and access controls. An alternate approach to document management is to include templated document generation as a feature. This way paper document generation and sharing is not needed to begin with. These DMS often provide contract lifecycle management, and electronic signature as well.
Features of Document Management Systems
Document management systems provide the following feature set:
Imaging, mobile image capture
File type conversion
Document sharing & collaboration
Automated backup, archiving (i.e. integration)
Document publishing, public sharing
Policy-driven access and controls
Graphic-based object editing, manipulation
.pdf editing, fields
Customizable search, content location
Templates, electronic document builder
Document Management Systems Comparison
More feature complete document management systems are generally offered on a cloud-based, software-as-a-service model and are available by subscription. 30-day free trials of document management systems are common. The most common pricing variable is the number of licensed users. Plans may also be priced according to the volume of contracts processed and managed. Some vendors offer perpetual licensing for simple document management products (e.g. .pdf editors, converters, etc). Also, ECM vendors may supply all the features required for document management as modules for their platforms.