People have long been going paperless simply and for free by storing their important documents, photos, and other files in Windows Explorer. As Microsoft explains it, using My Documents is convenient if you want to access your files quickly. That is just where the hackers would look.
Security and safety of document management, whether for an individual or business, is more important than ever, as more and more transactions are taking place sans paper. Yes, by using Windows Explorer you can move, rename, copy, and search for folders and files. So can anyone else, with a little patience.
The Pros of Document Management Software
Document management software (DMS) specializes in making sure your important paperwork is kept secure on the Cloud and safe from such disasters such as fire or flood. It also helps with filing and retrieving. Consider these general positive aspects:
- File—Providing more than just easier and less cluttered filing, document management software allows for easy search and retrieval with just a few clicks of a mouse. Searches can be conducted using a file name, keyword, or full document search. Imaging can be accessed from any desktop by using the correct approval codes.
- Storage—Open-sourced document management has been popular because it is low cost or no cost. However, there is a reason for this. In addition to security being an ongoing issue, storage often is limited, unlike with document management software.
- Archive—Document management software provides the storage of limitless files for years, which can be helpful if a business is tax audited down the line. Customer service will show a marked improvement as in the case of someone needing information about a product that has been off the shelves for years.
- Control—DMS allows for a variety of users to be able to access, read, and modify documents from virtually any location with the right security codes. This permits salesmen on the road and telecommuters to use company files while off-site.
- Flow—The ease of using DMS means most companies will see an improvement in their workflow as well as their cash flow, as it will enable more accurate invoicing and collections.
To find the best document management software, you may want to look for these features specifically:
- Scan—The best DMS will be able to easily turn electronic documents and paper files in to PDFs for better collaboration and distribution. Not so with Windows Explorer.
- Track—It will give you ways of tracking workflow and be sure the correct processes and procedures are followed in a way Windows Explorer cannot.
- Search—By being able to scan entire documents, a good DMS will allow you to run a search of the full text. It also will help you create metadata tags for organization and retrieval and provide tools to help you find documents.
- Security—There will be multiple levels of security, unlike with Windows Explorer, with data backup and Cloud storage.
- Integration—The software should be able to integrate with existing software and programs.
- Help—In case of bugs or problems, the DMS should come with support from the manufacturer.
Document management software, then, can give you or your business full control over the important information you want to retain and retrieve in a way Windows Explorer simply cannot. Using these benchmarks will help you find the DMS that will best suit your needs.