Document Collaboration

How to Identify and Evaluate an Enterprise DMS: The Final Frontier

In this third and final installment of our blog series on selecting a new document management system (DMS), we suggest seven critical questions that enterprises should consider when evaluating potential DMS products and vendors.

Besides searching for a DMS that is capable of improving operational efficiency, reducing costs, and increasing workforce productivity, it is also important to identify a vendor that can effectively meet your organizational requirements.

Selecting the right DMS vendor requires informed decision-making based on the comprehensive evaluation of various key factors, including current and future market trends, cost structure, and vendor viability and capability.

1. How many users does the DMS currently support?

A large number of installations and a huge user base demonstrate that a vendor’s DMS operates on a scalable and robust technology platform.

2. Does the vendor have strong business continuity capabilities?

To prove their viability in the highly competitive DMS market, vendors must demonstrate a long-term vision for growth and success, financial stability, and an effective approach to helping clients overcome their challenges.

3. How many years has the vendor been in business and what is its customer track record?

A significant history of operating in the DMS domain and a sizable, satisfied client base indicates that a vendor is committed to providing quality support, as well as meeting dynamic market requirements.

4. Does the vendor provide good customer service?

An efficient vendor will provide 24-7 support for enterprise queries or requirements, with the ability to resolve any technical or functional needs quickly and accessibly via phone, chat, email, and/or in-person service and training. The vendor must also provide regular software updates to improve product performance and introduce new functionalities.

5. What is the vendor’s cost structure?

When considering a particular vendor, enterprises should have a clear understanding of the cost of a software license as well as the entire cost of ownership. Are there additional charges associated with product maintenance and upgrades? How about setup and deployment costs? Enterprises must also inquire about vendor pricing plans and cost escalation in case of scalability of demand.

6. Does the vendor own the DMS?

Enterprises need to clarify whether the vendor is the owner or developer of the DMS, as opposed to a licensee reseller. This could affect the vendor’s ability to provide application upgrades, bug fixes, and ongoing improvements.

7. Does the vendor offer solutions across other verticals or domains?

Changing economic scenarios often require enterprises to cater to different clients operating in diverse verticals. Therefore, a vendor that offers solutions for different industry segments can prove immensely beneficial for an enterprise’s future. It is also critical that the vendor’s DMS can be easily integrated with any of its other solutions. For example, an enterprise could ensure proactive information governance through the efficient classification and storage of data in a DMS.

Part 1 of this blog series considers specific evaluation criteria to take into account when selecting a new DMS. Part 2 discusses various technical and functional capabilities and security features of a viable DMS. Enterprises should evaluate all of these factors before selecting the most appropriate DMS for their particular needs.