Digital Document Management is the practice of digitizing (or document scanning), indexing and archiving both paper and electronic documents for easy retrieval and collaboration, giving you a competitive edge by strategically harnessing the value of this divergent media.
No longer just paper-based objects, "documents" now represent numerous forms of content such as paper, fax, email, application and Web matter. As this unstructured content grows exponentially, enterprise business processes tend to bog down, causing losses in efficiency and productivity.
Documents are scanned into the system. The document management system stores them somewhere on a hard drive or optical disk. The documents then get indexed. When a person later wants to read a document, he or she uses the retrieval tools available in the document management system. Which documents can be read and what actions performed on these documents is dependent on the access provided by the document management system.
A Complete Document Management System Comprises Five Elements
Scanning - Major advancements in scanning technology make paper document conversion fast, inexpensive and easy. A good scanner will make putting paper files into your computer easy.
Storage - The storage system provides long-term and reliable storage for documents. A good storage system will accommodate changing documents, growing volumes and advancing technology.
Indexing - The index system creates an organized document filing system and makes future retrieval simple and efficient. A good indexing system will make existing procedures and systems more effective.
Retrieval - The retrieval system uses information about the documents, including index and text, to find images stored in the system. A good retrieval system will make finding the right documents fast and easy.
Access - Document viewing should be readily available to those who need it, with the flexibility to control system access. Documents should be viewable to authorized personnel, whether in the office, at different locations, or over the Internet.