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11 Best document management systems & software for 2022

A large part of any business is document management and control. Maintaining records, instructions, P.O.s, employee files, and any number of documents…

document-management

By Hailey Friedman

Mar 31, 2022

A large part of any business is document management and control. Maintaining records, instructions, P.O.s, employee files, and any number of documents is simply part of a business structure, and must be handled based on the industry. 

The plans for the business–and if there are any certifications, regulations, or rules in place surrounding document retention and control–will be part of it too. In turn, ensuring you have the best document management software on hand is essential to helping businesses maintain productivity and efficiency

What are document management systems and softwares? 

Document management systems are software packages that are built to allow a business to run efficiently and keep its documents in control, updated, and available to everyone who needs them. 

This usually includes document storage, templates, and ideas for document creation, as well as features like revision control and routing for businesses to communicate and update their documentation.

Benefits of using document management systems and softwares

If you have an established business or sell a product, documentation will be an inevitable part of your daily life. The implementation of a document management system and software into a business has the opportunity to provide:

  • Improved efficiencies
  • Opportunities for asynchronous work 
  • Internal organization and better collaboration 
  • Record-keeping for legal and regulatory purposes 
  • Security & privacy 
  • Advanced knowledge management 

Best document management systems and softwares for 2022

Almanac

No doubt, Almanac is the best document management software available, combining all functionality considerations necessary for full document management–plus document creation and storage. With async collaboration being one of its core features, Almanac has everything a business needs for managing documents with ease and efficiency.

Rich in documentation tools and integration modules, Almanac uses cloud storage for constant availability of documents for both viewing and editing, no matter where you are or what time zone you are in. Editing, approving, and viewing can be done in real-time, so there is no waiting for responses or input. 

There are reports and analytics available on how involved every employee has been around the projects. And one of the best things about Almanac is that despite the richness of the program, the interface is very user-friendly and is not difficult to learn, allowing businesses to take advantage of its document management capabilities immediately. 

Features:

  • Dynamic embeds with various integrations 
  • Document analytics
  • Bi-directional links and thread commenting
  • Activity feed to track changes and updates in real-time
  • Connected versions allow for editing without disturbing the original document 
  • Customizable handbooks to organize and present documents neatly
  • Advanced search engine and aggregated email options

Pros:

  • Easy to install and learn
  • Dynamic documentation and advanced version control
  • Document analytics for in-depth reviews
  • Notifications of edits and requests for real-time collaboration

Cons: 

  • Almanac is currently in the early stages and continuously adding new features, so you’ll have to stay up to date on any changes 

Pricing:

  • Free: Unlimited guests and up to 25 documents
  • Pro: $12/user/month for unlimited guests and documents, customizable workspace design
  • Enterprise: Pricing by business for custom onboarding and setup, priority support, SSO/SAML, SCIM, and lots more

Confluence

The goal of Confluence is to create a type of wiki for businesses to organize and share their documents simultaneously. The software focuses on remote collaboration and team communication, giving everyone who uses the software equal opportunity to give feedback about projects and documents.

Confluence is a part of the Atlassian suite and can work well for all sizes of organizations, but for a document management software that has been around since 2004, it still lacks quite a bit of usability and features. The user interface for Confluence is very simple and bland, with items that a user may easily miss if they are not actively searching for them.

Features:

  • Works across all devices and operating systems
  • Data encryption and secure privacy
  • Real-time editing and notifications
  • Structured pages and spaces (workflows)

Pros:

  • Simple user interface with a short learning curve
  • Allows for customization
  • Information is easy to access to either view or edit

Cons:

Pricing:

  • Free: Up to 10 users, one site, unlimited spaces and pages
  • Standard: $5.50/user/month for up to 20k users, 1 site, page insights, page and space permissions
  • Premium: $10.50/user/month for up to 20k users, 1 site, analytics, team calendars, admin controls
  • Enterprise pricing by business: Up to 20k users, unlimited sites, full admin controls, guaranteed 99.95% uptime

Jira

Jira is a document management platform for knowledge base management and team collaboration. While it was originally created as a problem tracking software, Jira has morphed into a planning and development tool. It keeps projects and tasks at the forefront with easy team administration, and optical character recognition makes scanning files more straightforward.

Jira is another part of the Atlassian Suite and has integrations with many applications to streamline productivity. However, Jira’s feature-rich user interface can be confusing to learn and keep up with. The number of available tabs and sections makes the dashboard very busy.

Features:

  • Scrum and Kanban boards provide optimal opportunity for maximum output
  • Agile reporting for a clear picture of action and progress
  • Automated notifications for tasks and updates with visual project management tools
  • End-to-end DevOps visibility

Pros:

  • Account capture and domain verification for all users
  • Planning and tracker boards
  • Automatic progress reporting

Cons:

  • No real-time communications in-app
  • User interface can be confusing and difficult to learn
  • Some key features and integrations are lacking

Pricing:

  • Free: Up to 10 users, one site, unlimited spaces and pages
  • Standard: $5.50/user/month – Up to 20k users, 1 site, page insights, page and space permissions
  • Premium: $10.50/user/month – Up to 20k users, 1 site, analytics, team calendars, admin controls
  • Enterprise pricing by business – Up to 20k users, unlimited sites, full admin controls, guaranteed 99.95% uptime

Sharepoint

Microsoft Sharepoint is part of the Microsoft 365 suite. Touting itself as a mobile, intelligent interface, Sharepoint relies on setting up sites for different teams or projects. A variety of different media can be shared on a site, including news, files, data, and resources. A thorough search engine and rich content management provide a comprehensive document management platform.

Microsoft Sharepoint as a standalone application is a bit lackluster. Without the integration of other Microsoft O365 suite applications, Sharepoint lacks real-time communication or collaboration features. It can also be difficult to share information on Sharepoint with other users who do not have direct access to a Sharepoint site.

Features:

  • Extensive site customization options
  • Sites can have the look and functionality of comprehensive web pages for organizations
  • All the data is centralized, keeping information easily available

Pros:

  • Basic automation available
  • Many instructional resources available
  • Shared common resources

Cons:

  • Needs to be used as part of the Microsoft O365 suite to be fully functional
  • Excessive suite features can be overwhelming and difficult to learn
  • No free trial

Pricing:

  • Plan 1: $5/user/month – All features for a small- to mid-sized business, no other Microsoft applications included
  • Plan 2: $10/user/month – Full-featured with capabilities for enterprise, no other Microsoft applications included
  • Office 365 E3: $23/user/month – Advanced messaging, document sharing, compliance, and management features, including other Microsoft applications

Rubex

Rubex is a comprehensive document management software inside the eFileCabinet suite. It features a wide range of templates that can be transformed into a number of different documents and filed automatically. An extensive search engine with multiple-filter options makes documents easy to find, and optical character recognition helps to reduce paperwork.

The user interface is clean and relatively simple, with brand customization available. Workflows can be automated, so simple tasks like filing and retrieving do not need to be done manually. However, this platform can at times be inconsistent in its functionality, as users still report running into minor bugs and glitches.

Features:

  • A large selection of premade templates
  • High level of document security
  • Full-text searching

Pros:

  • Mobile accessibility for users
  • Dual-screen preview
  • Email import and export

Cons:

  • Not always intuitive or easy to use
  • Possibility of losing information if there is downtime
  • Customers complain about crashing and restarting issues

Pricing:

Rubex is part of the eFileCabinet suite, which does not display pricing online.

DocuWare

DocuWare is a cloud-based document management solution that promises to nullify time wastage and process uncertainty through workflow automation. Employee records and documents can be digitized and centralized for securely storing, archiving, and ease of access. 

DocuWare is meant to be a full document management software program, replacing single document management apps that do not work well outside of a suite. It puts a focus on making paper-free workplaces through optical character recognition, with tasks that can be fully automated. In turn, this helps with freeing employee time and excluding menial tasks.

Features:

  • Reduce manual steps including data entry with automated workflows
  • Full digitization of paper documents for safe and easy data sharing
  • Cloud storage gives access to documents around the clock

Pros:

  • Workflow and task management
  • Document import and export
  • Electronic signatures and electronic forms

Cons:

  • Some users complain about customer service being inadequate
  • Large files often cause issues when downloading or sharing
  • Falls far behind in features offered by close-alternatives

Pricing:

DocuWare does not display pricing online.

eFileCabinet

eFileCabinet document management software promises to securely automate work across multiple departments in business organizations. eFileCabinet focuses on customizability and control of documents within the workplace through smart automation, workflows, electronic signatures, and other features.

This program can also incorporate governance, giving the ability to set permissions for users and set automation for retention time and priority tasks. Image capture is available for verification of documents and signatures.

Features:

  • Send secure signature requests to anyone regarding any document
  • Usable from a desktop application or a browser
  • Import email or attachments easily with Rubex application

Pros:

Cons:

  • Does not work with all email apps because of security issues
  • Functionality falls far behind alternative solutions in the market
  • Less value for money

Pricing:

EFileCabinet does not display pricing online.

M-Files

M-Files is a top-level content management software package that works to organize and control most aspects of a day in the life of a business. Businesses are able to distribute company policies, maintain audit trails, control who can access information, and perform document control, among many other things, through one platform. 

Although feature-rich, many customer complaints regarding the non user-friendly interface of M-files have been raised in the past. However, it does appear that the devs behind the app are planning to get that rectified in the future. 

Features:

  • Powerful and versatile search-engine
  • Document collaboration with easy routing and approvals
  • Work from any location that has an internet connection

Pros:

  • Reduce data loss with regular backups
  • Easily integrate with third-party apps
  • Fully-customizable environment

Cons:

  • User interface leaves much to be desired
  • Steep learning curve
  • Difficult to maintain without technical help

Pricing:

M-Files does not display pricing online.

PaperTracer

PaperTracer is a document and contract management software that undertakes every role from creation to renewal or termination of contracts. Documents can be uploaded and managed in a central cloud, and then routed to designated employees, all within one software. 

PaperTracer uses workflows to automate contract management, taking some of the work off of individual employees. Even though the software has been around for many years, not many reviews or information has been released to the public recently. Whether PaperTracer works across other browsers and devices, is still up for debate.

Features:

  • Appointed Consultants tailor the product to your business needs
  • Cloud-based infrastructure opens the doors to async collaboration for teams
  • Literature and training modules available

Pros:

  • Easy access to critical information
  • Metadata classification
  • Good integration with other systems

Cons:

  • Collaboration and document sharing is not as good as promised
  • User interface is not simple to use
  • Many features require coding to use

Pricing:

PaperTracer does not display pricing online.

LogicalDOC

LogicalDOC is a document management software with a specific focus on business process automation and fast content retrieval that can be employed across all the departments of organizations. Integrations are offered with many major software names, and cloud-based storage is available, although not automatically included.

LogicalDOC was founded in 2006 and has integrated strategic growth to keep their product ahead in times when remote work tools and software are prolific. This software promises to bring simplicity both with data entry and document retrieval.

Features:

  • Multilingual interface with full-text indexing
  • Extensive search tool that will work with keywords, parameters, or full-text content
  • DICOM images preview
  • Metadata and stock templates

Pros:

  • Light, flexible, and intuitive
  • Maintains records of document history for revisions and modifications
  • Document encryption for enhanced security

Cons:

  • Indexing large quantities of documents take a long time
  • Updates do not always go smoothly
  • Downtime is a possibility because of the cloud-based system

Pricing:

LogicalDOC offers a free trial, but does not display pricing online.

Are there free document management systems and software?

When it comes to document management systems and software, “free” is not a term that gets thrown around a lot. However, there are a number of open-source document management software programs available for both personal use and small businesses that do not require support or training. 

The main drawback of free document management software is that while they often have active developers, there is not much customer support. 

There are also free options for some document management systems–like Almanac’s free plan–that you can use until you need something more robust.  

Conclusion: What is the best document management system and software in 2022?

Almanac, hands down, is the best document management software in 2022. With a feature-rich base, great customer support, and regularly added features and updates, this impressive document management software has everything a business needs to turn its current document control system into a comprehensive online collaboration system
With Almanac, the tedious work of document management becomes light and easy, making work less stressful for developers, human resources departments, product managers, employee teams–and everyone in between. If you are interested in finding out how Almanac can transform the ways of your business to help it reach new heights, get in touch with their friendly sales team here.

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