Features: Regulatory Compliance Support Is Not Universally Available
Many businesses operating in regulated industries are required by law to track, maintain and audit business documents.
Among the document management systems on our list, slightly more than half provide a document control system that supports the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Sarbanes-Oxley, Good Manufacturing Practices required by the FDA, or ISO 9000/9001 regulatory compliance requirements.
This is a critical capability that many businesses cannot afford to do without. If your business is required to comply with certain regulations, the document management software you choose should offer regulatory compliance support.
Tools: Version Control Is Critical
Version control, or versioning, is critical to safeguarding and tracking editable documents within a document management system.
Versioning ensures that all new edits are properly saved and old versions are retained in the system for reference. Versioning capabilities are especially important when multiple people in the office maintain editing permissions on the same documents.
In most systems, version control limits editing access of a given file to a single person at a time, forcing other users into read-only status until editing is completed to prevent confusion. In some systems, you can set a notification to alert specific users when a file has been edited.
Integration: CRM and ERP Integration Are Uncommon
If your business utilizes a CRM application or an ERP database, limit your search to document management software that integrates seamlessly with the programs you use daily. While you can use software that doesn't integrate with your CRM or ERP program, choosing compatible software allows you to access, edit, back up, and monitor digital files and documents created within your CRM or ERP program, further increasing the efficiency of your office.
Another noteworthy fact is that most document control systems integrate with popular email clients, such as Microsoft Outlook, as well as business software suites like Microsoft Office.