If you have been a part of a corporate firm, I can bet that you have gone through the pain of spending hours looking for important documents. The voluminous paperwork and official documents in an organization travel through a complex system of storage and delivery. The possibility of human error in handling these paper documents is much and thus these can be misplaced very easily. In an era where organizations are fighting to cut costs, they cannot afford employees wasting their time and energy in managing and retrieving these documents. Although a paperless world seems to be a distant reality as of now, but the online document management tools are doing a pretty good job in increasing the efficiency of the organizations. These document management tools have become an indispensable part of all the departments from purchasing to Human Resources. Here are some of the departments which use these tools most frequently.
- Customer service: Customer service is one of the most paper-intensive departments in any business. Handling the invoices and contracts of the customers could be a great headache for such departments. Some years back such departments had to maintain physical copies of customer complaints, also there was ambiguity in earlier communications with the customers. But now, with the emergence of advanced DMS, all the previous communications, commitments and customer related documents can be accessed with a click of the mouse.
This has greatly reduced the time frame of after sales services, as all the information from complaints to invoices can be accessed on the local network. This has increased the productivity of call centers. The cost of operations has been greatly reduced as these systems affect the labor cost and paper management costs directly.
- Legal: The legal department of any business perform various functions from representing the firms in lawsuits to managing contract related documents. Managing these official and important documents is a big challenge. The storage and retrieval of legal documents like income tax returns, reports, contracts, and licenses take a lot of time and effort. That is why legal departments of the firms have adopted document management systems. Such systems make a back-up of these documents by scanning them and makes the retrieval much easier. These documents can be surfed through by searching keywords and organizing them in the chronological or alphabetical orders.
- Accounting and Auditing: All the accounting transactions are based on documentary evidence of the transactions. All such accounts such as bills payable, ledger accounts were generally in a printed form. Managing these documents and their evidence (like invoices) is time-consuming. With document management systems the paper record trail can be minimized and such documents can be shared in a secure manner with other employees of the department. Recently, document management systems were developed which could be integrated and used with different accounting software. All these documents are shared within the document management system which is password protected which ensures that the documents cannot be tampered with in course of sharing the file.
- Marketing: Were you also in the perception that this department wouldn’t make into the list? Although it is true that marketing and sales department might not have voluminous paper trails, but they are also one of the departments which frequently use online document management. All the important communications and with the customers and the suppliers has to be recorded. This could later act as a proof if any party challenges them about the information provided to them of the product or service.
Hence all the contracts and documents can become accessible all over the world and can be easily shared.
Many DMS software comes with the tracking mechanism which can record when the particular document was seen and accessed. Also if the document isn’t opened within a specific period of time, reminders can be sent.
- Human Resources: Shuffling through racks and racks of resumes or performance appraisals to find the right candidates is a common sight in the HR department. A few years back, a lot of effort of employees of this department was wasted in efficiently storing such documents in an organized fashion. But with the advent of DMS, all this was a click away. All these documents which are stored in such an online system are usually considered legal. This eliminates the need of making paper copies of such documents. All these documents can be shared easily and in a secure way. The local network can be restricted to only certain employees of the organization who would be able to view or edit these applications.
Hence the versatility of these systems cannot be questioned. They have turned out to be necessary for most, if not all the departments of any firm. Such systems have helped in developing structured databases and have increased the efficiency of firms, helping them to save the precious time and efforts of the employees.