Tired of the conventional practice of managing your documents in their paper form? You have all reason to feel so. Try a Document Management system which will manage your documents, alleviating your need of maintaining logs of papers and files.

Document management is a set of practices which allow a user to manage his paper documents in an electronic form. This takes off quite a bit of headache in terms of maintaining and securing the paper records which anyways are susceptible to natural disasters.

Document Management conceptually is related to Digital Asset Management, Document Imaging and is a subset of Enterprise Content Management System. A document Management System address some or all of the below mentioned areas:

Retrieval - The user’s ability to retrieve electronically stored documents.
Filing - The storage of documents once prepared in its electronic form.
Security - Confidential and business critical data would need to be secured from unauthorized use. Statutes like HIPAA, GLBA, SOX have laid down rules which would need to be followed by companies that implement Document Management Systems.
Archival - Mechanisms which are followed to protect the documents against floods, fires and natural disasters. Having an off-shore back up center or a disaster management/recovery center is one of the solutions to tackle this issue.
Retention - “How long does a user retain the stored documents”, “Which documents should be retained” are the most important questions asked here.
Distribution - This factor refers to deciding on the group of people to whom a set of documents need to be distributed.
Creation and Authentication and Approval
The various components of Document Management are:
Metadata - Mandatory for the storage of each document. It contains the storage date and the identity of the person who has stored it. Users can create the metadata either manually or in an automated manner through the DMS.
Integration - This is the facility by which a document can be shared across multiple Document Management Systems.
Capture - Use of OCR and various imaging software to present a paper document in an image form.
Indexing - Once documents are stored and managed, it is extremely vital that a DMS provides the user the facility to track these documents. Indexing can be done by either unique document identifiers or through metadata in complex searches.
Retrieval - Imagine selecting one document of about 10,000 other documents stored in the system. small business accounting is known as Retrieval which is made easy by either simple indexing techniques or by the use of complex Boolean expressions.
Many companies have realized the potential of Document management and have created DMS which could be hosted either online (web-based) or be hosted of your desktop. CAD Document Management allowing users to manage their CAD files through a DMS indicates the scope expansion of the Document Management System.