Digital Document Management Controls Document Versions

Steve Breault

Steve Breault

More than 80 percent data of a business resides in documents making document management the deciding factor in the efficient running of an organization. There is no doubt that document management software has made records and information management very convenient. However many companies have also started switching to digital document management to gain an edge over their competitors.


There are several advantages of document management system over the conventional methods of filing documents. For instance, you no longer need to take prints or make copies of documents to share them with others, as document management software can be used over a network and documents shared through a virtual repository. Digital document management also reduces scope for error, as everything from creation of document to their modification and deletion is automated. Document management software is usually customized to accept certain file conventions while creating a document, otherwise the system would show an error. Such features of document management system ensure accurate entry of information and minimize errors.


Version control is another important component of document management. This feature helps in managing multiple revisions of the same document. This often happens when a team is working on a project, where each member is likely to make changes to one or many documents. Having several versions of the same document with every member of the team, it may become difficult to manage the revisions. Problem occurs when the team does not know which the latest workable version of a document is. For instance, software developers may make very small changes to a long set of coding, however, without giving a different name to different versions of the code, it will be very difficult to know which coding worked.


To resolve this issue, document management software uses version control to store and retrieve different versions of a document. There are many ways of saving versions of the same document. You can either suffix the name of the file with a number or simply add the date of creation or modification to the name while saving the document. For instance, year of creation may be used while naming company policies, so both administrative staff and other employees know the latest version of policies. 


In digital document management, a version control system manages documents and directories and tracks changes made to them over time. This helps you recover an older version of a file if and when needed. This is an important feature especially when there are many people working on the same file. It also helps in keeping track of documents created over a period of time. For instance, the older version of a monthly report would help compare the changes that have taken place over the past few months. Similarly, an older version of a presentation shown to senior management helps you know what information was shared during the last meeting.


Version control in document management software also helps keep track of changes made to the document and who made those changes. This makes is easier for team members to collaborate and create documents updated by every member of the team. Making different versions is also easier with a version control system. Such a system saves file as you edit them, thus recording a different version of file to which changes have been made. You can also revert to the previous version of the file, so the older version remains intact.


Being part of document management software, version control support several file formats. Whether you want different versions of a PDF file or an image file, you can easily manage any file using version control. Along with this, the system also creates backup of all the versions of a document. These versions can then be retrieved and shared through the network, storage device or email, whenever required.


Digital document management has truly made management of files much more convenient and comfortable compared to the conventional methods of filing. In fact, one cannot imagine version control without a digital system. A digital document management system is essential for increasing the efficiency of your business and streamlining the flow of documents required to support your business. 

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