If we said we’d never lost a potential document management solution customer to M-Files, we’d be lying. We’d also be lying if we said a newly minted M-Files user never regretted their purchase and wished they had gone with eFileCabinet instead.

In this article, we’ll cover the important bases with each vendor so you can make an informed buying decision without post-purchase regrets. While M-Files is a great, high-octane solution for larger organizations, it has several crippling limitations for small to mid-sized organizations and single departments within organizations—therein justifying the purpose of this article: to prevent small to mid-sized organizations from experiencing M-Files’ buyer remorse.

Many of M-Files shortcomings for the small to mid-sized business market are highlighted by review sites listing both M-Files and eFileCabinet as document management solution vendors. 2016 has been a monumental year for eFileCabinet—one where it’s deservedly climbed the reviews and rankings portion of the web. In addition to the 100+ eFileCabinet customer success stories and customer testimonials, let’s examine the customer reviews and rankings on these review sites.

TopTenReviews.com: eFileCabinet Ranked #1 in Document Management, M-Files, #2


Why M-Files Lost to eFileCabinet

As a Microsoft partner, M-Files has to stay out of bed with Apple products in hopes of spearheading its own innovation. This means that M-Files software cannot be installed on Macs – severely limiting the type of tablet or smartphone with which users can access the features of M-Files. This impinges M-Files usability and accessibility, tipping the scale in eFileCabinet’s favor.

Most SMBs or small organizations with 1-5 employees are extremely busy, and want to use a software that is compatible with the smartphones they already use. Otherwise, they’ll be sacrificing the mobility, accessibility, and security that any document management system should provide to its user in one package, but on multiple platforms.

Additionally, M-Files has an objectively inferior support process, which can not only be attributed to the size of organizations their solution is designed to serve (large organizations), but also the way their software support is structured (which we’ll delve into later). They’re less hell-bent on resolving any implementation issues smaller customer bases may have, whereas eFileCabinet specializes in tending to the challenges specific to this niche market.

With Finland and Dallas headquarters, including the large organizations M-Files typically serves, getting customized and attentive customer support from M-Files can be difficult—especially if you run or work in a smaller organization that cannot lose business due to downtime or software complications.

In addition to superior support (a given due to eFileCabinet’s award-winning support team), The Top Ten Reviews link mentions eFileCabinet as superior to M-Files in management tools, integrations with popular software, and storage features.

eFileCabinet Wins Verified Quality Seal in Great User Experience from Finances Online

Why M-Files Lost to eFileCabinet

Although M-Files is considered a document management solution by some, experts classify it as an Enterprise Content Management (ECM) solution, which is better geared toward serving the needs of larger organizations. Although this is not an in-depth explanation of the various differences between ECM and DMS, it’s a good starting point for understanding the distinction at the point of purchase.

With this designation comes high-octane features, but also limited usability and a complex interface. With a cryptic database structure and overly complex API (application programming interface), M-files users have a difficult time customizing the solution to their liking—especially if these users belong to small organizations without an information technology team on-site. However, eFileCabinet’s open API was designed for simplicity and bandwidth, making it navigable, simple, and effective.

To clarify for those who may be unfamiliar with the concept of an open API and how it relates to a closed API, consider this analogy: To a business, an open API is a deck of cards, and a closed API is a board game. You can play multiple games with a set of one cards (the open API), but only one game with a board game (the closed API).

In this sense, the purpose of an open API is to decentralize business development and let information technology teams tailor the solution to their liking. However, this is not to be confused with open source technology, which decentralizes the entire software development process. Both terms are relevant to those seeking the right document management solution.

eFileCabinet is the #1 Most Popular DMS on Capterra

Why M-Files Lost to eFileCabinet

M-Files lost to eFileCabinet not only in the “Most Popular” DMS category, but also in the Top Products category, because the heavy fallout M-Files users have post install. Although M-Files is on the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Content Management (ECM), the reason it fails as a document management vendor can be traced back to the overhead and bandwidth it would require for a small organization to use it successfully.

What’s more, M-Files falls behind eFileCabinet on this review site because its business model is predicated upon selling consulting services in addition to its software, which creates a nebulous, never-ending payment cycle for each additional tweak, change, or fix.

eFileCabinet is the #1 DMS Based on Client Reviews on Crowdreviews.com

Why M-Files Lost to eFileCabinet

Some review sites let vendors pay for top spots, but CrowdReviews.com technology rankings are fueled solely by customer and client reviews, and these reviews have put eFileCabinet DMS a staggering 9 points ahead of the vendor in 2nd place.

M-Files holds an overall score of 36.5, clocking in at #10, whereas eFileCabinet holds an overall score of 54.7. The scoring is conducted based on review score, consumer sentiment score, and levels of audience engagement.

With a large, overwrought user manual, M-Files customers have a difficult time finding and leveraging the features they’re looking for, and learning the system requires more technical expertise than is necessary with eFileCabinet’s document management solution.

Losing another point in the usability department, M-Files becomes difficult to use when features beyond simple file importing are required. Additionally, M-Files users have reported that the database schema is counter-intuitive.

eFileCabinet is Business News Daily’s Top-Rated Mobile Document Management System

Why M-Files Lost to eFileCabinet

If a solution is cryptic and difficult to use on a desktop or PC, it’s only going to be harder to use on a mobile phone. And this is the reason M-Files fell from Business News Daily’s ranking for best mobile document management system applications.

Small to mid-sized business owners and employees, and employees working within departments of larger organizations such as human resources or legal departments, need to retain the functionality of their document management system on their mobile devices, and eFileCabinet lets DMS users do just that.

For small to mid-sized organizations wanting to securely put their office in the pockets of their employees, eFileCabinet’s mobile app is the best solution, affording the responsiveness clients demand, the usability any industry demands, and the convenience that makes obtaining a work-life balance possible.