In our most recent blog post, we discussed the many benefits of Document Management Systems—including easier access to documents, better collaboration, added security, better use of space, and better disaster recovery. Hopefully by now you’re convinced that Document Management Systems can help improve your company’s operations. But choosing the right DMS for your company’s needs can be a challenge. Outlined below are some of the pros and cons of different Document Management Systems to help you decide what can benefit your company the most.
Self-Hosted Document Management System: With a self-hosted DMS, all software is stored inside your business on your company’s own servers. This system allows you to store as many documents and files as your server allows. The software comes with a one-time cost that’s partly based on the number of users. Typically, self-hosted systems cost thousands of dollars. Sometimes there are additional charges for software, installation, and licensing for each user. There is also an optional yearly charge for continual support and software upgrades.
In addition to being expensive, a potential drawback is that your company is responsible for making sure there’s a proper backup system, since files aren’t automatically being saved in the cloud. Furthermore, not all self-hosted systems work with both Mac and Windows but rather only work with one or the other.
On the other hand, with self-hosted systems you are in complete control and are not relying on anyone else to keep the system up and running. You also are not dependent on an Internet connection; if the connection goes down, you still have access to all your documents.
Cloud-Hosted Document Management System: With a cloud-hosted DMS, all software is hosted by your provider and accessed online. You can log in to the system from any computer or mobile device connected to the Internet. You pay a small monthly fee for each user, which depends on the provider, the number of features you want, and the amount of storage you want. The provider handles all maintenance and software upgrades for free.
With a cloud-hosted DMS, you don’t need an IT team to install the software and keep it running properly. It is also relatively inexpensive. Your files are automatically backed up so you don’t have to worry about doing that yourself, and you can access your files from anywhere with an Internet connection.
The downside of a cloud-hosted DMS is that you’re dependent on your provider to keep the system running smoothly. So if the provider has a problem at its data center, you might not have access to your files until the issue is resolved. If your Internet connection fails, you could also lose access to your files. Cloud-hosted systems also have storage limits.
If you need further assistance figuring out which Document Management System is right for your company, QualPath can help. If your company is considering implementing a Document Management System, contact QualPath today.
Brooks, Chad. (2016). Document Management Systems: A Buyer’s Guide. Business News Daily.