A document management system is an integrated system utilized to get, maintain, store and control documents and thus reduce paper and document related waste. Most are capable of maintaining a backup copy of the various versions modified and created by other users. In addition, these systems can be used for creating a database of electronic documents that may be retrieved by their users. Since most document management systems support multiple versions, these can be used in conjunction with other document management software systems.
A document management system usually has an interface resembling a word processing application. Documents are normally stored on a computer or a virtual machine (VMWare, Virtual PC, Wine) and then saved to an appropriate document storage medium. This storage medium could be a CD-ROM, a hard drive, or an online storage facility such as a file cabinet. The document management system uses a software program to locate the documents that need to be accessed and then makes them available for user access.
A large number of companies today use document management software to manage their business’s electronic documents. These businesses include law firms, medical practices, government agencies, and others. Large corporations also utilize some form of electronic document management (EDM) to help control and safeguard their company’s paper-based work. The purpose of this type of document management is to store, retrieve, transmit, compare and edit electronic documents.
Document management systems stores documents electronically allowing them to be retrieved when needed. EDM methods include retrieval of documents in a spreadsheet application, offline attachment of documents to allow for quick retrieval, search capabilities using keywords, and automated indexing for quick retrieval. Many document management software systems also include a feature which allows users to make text changes to the documents, thus making it possible for users to make any changes without saving the document. Document Management Software is designed to make the process of retrieving documents as easy as possible.
There are several features that a good document management software system should have. First, document management software should be able to perform automated document retrieval and indexing. The document management software needs to be able to perform these tasks efficiently. Next, it should allow for the storage of a variety of documents in various formats such as PDF (Portable Document Format), Word documents, Power Point presentations, HTML, and other file types. Some document management applications allow for the storage of email attachments. Some document management applications store the document in its own offline directory (on a network drive), on a local network drive, or on a network of remote servers.
Another important feature of a document management application is the ability to create, change, and view records in a directory and in its own offline directory. Some document management applications allow a user to specify the fields that are part of a document (fields are specified by a specific name or keyword) and to specify the names and locations of sub-records within the document. A document management application may allow a user to enter a word or document name and create a hyperlink that points to a specific location on a server where the records are stored. When a user wants to retrieve a document, all he has to do is click on the hyperlink, which leads him/her directly to the relevant records. This saves the user considerable time because he/she does not have to go to the actual location of where the records are kept.
Knowledge management systems provide information about the activities of employees, projects, teams, departments, teams, and individuals. It also provides information about the business cycles, financial health and performance, and overall business situation. The use of knowledge management systems requires the creation of a knowledge database. The primary purpose of creating a knowledge database is to allow the knowledge database administrator to make intelligent decisions concerning the record capturing, retention, access control, management, distribution, and usage of available knowledge.
Another key feature of document management is workflow. Workflow describes the ordered sequence of activities that users need to perform in order to get their desired result. Workflow is based upon the idea that there must be a business process involved in the capturing, indexing, and distribution of digital content. This concept is widely used in content management systems because workflow ensures the appropriate organization of digital information and allows users to work conveniently.