Top 7 Document Management Strategies To Supercharge Team Productivity 

Adoption of document management systems in the workplace has been on the rise in recent years in response to the increasing need for efficiency, security, and remote accessibility in information management. In fact, 80% of employees surveyed said they want their employers to make documents available via a cloud-based system.

The global document management system market has been experiencing steady growth. It is projected to grow from 7.16 billion in 2024 to 24.91 billion by 2032.

Document management systems (DMS) facilitate team collaboration, especially in today’s increasingly digital and remote work environments. By providing a centralised platform for storing, sharing, and managing documents, a DMS ensures that all team members have timely access to the latest versions of files, regardless of their physical location. Advanced features like real-time editing, communication tools, and integration capabilities within these systems further enhance teamwork by allowing seamless interactions and a more synchronised workflow across different projects and departments.

Enabling Enhanced Collaboration

Collaboration and innovation go hand in hand. When people from different backgrounds and skill sets come together to share ideas and perspectives, they can arrive at new solutions they might not have reached in their own silos. Diversity of thought leads to creative approaches to old problems, and leveraging different strengths leads to more efficient problem-solving. In addition to driving innovation, collaboration improves employee engagement by creating opportunities for people to learn from one another and to have their voices heard.

However, as the workforce becomes more widely distributed and remote or hybrid working arrangements become more common, teams are physically working together less frequently. In an age where hybrid and remote work make it more rare for employees to collaborate face to face, employee engagement is a key challenge. Individuals who lack opportunities to collaborate with their colleagues become less engaged.

To reap the many benefits of collaboration, companies need robust digital collaboration tools. Emailing different versions of a document back and forth simply doesn’t cut it anymore. A proper document management system can streamline your collaborative processes and expand your teams’ capacity to work together.

The Importance of Document Management in Team Collaboration

A document management system is a centralised platform where your people can store, organise, edit, and share documents of many kinds. A document management system makes it easy for all members of a team to access the documents they need regardless of where they’re working from. These systems remove barriers to collaboration while allowing your workforce to enjoy the flexibility and autonomy that hybrid and remote work offers.

When multiple team members are collaborating on a document, important changes can be  lost or overlooked because team members are working on different versions of the document. Unlike traditional document creation tools, document management platforms allow multiple team members to view and edit a single document in real time, ensuring that everyone is working with the latest version of a project at all times. This transparency helps employees avoid errors, confusion, and duplicated efforts. At the same time, a document management system can keep an audit log of revisions made and previous versions, so you don’t risk an erroneous override.

Document management systems also allow team members to communicate with one another directly in the platform, helping to keep everyone on the same page. Document management can facilitate collaboration automatically by notifying team members of certain activity, or sending a project to an individual or team for review and approval at the click of a button.

In addition to internal collaboration, document management systems also facilitate collaboration between you and your clients. For example, you can send a project to a client and allow them to provide feedback directly in the document in real time. Or, you can share, annotate, and capture a digital signature on a contract, all within your document management system.

Best Practices for Efficient Document Handling in Teams

Giving your employees the tools they need, such as secure access and effective communication, empowers employees to collaborate effectively, thereby increasing their commitment and satisfaction at work. To get the most value out of your document management system, consider the following best practices.


First and foremost, any digital platform or tool you deploy should be engineered to protect the data it holds. Documents frequently contain proprietary information, customer data, employee data, financial information, and other sensitive material.  An HR department handles sensitive employee documents, including personal information and performance reviews. To protect this data, they should implement a document management system with robust security features, ensuring that only authorised personnel can access specific files, thereby maintaining confidentiality and compliance with data protection regulations. Be sure your system has robust security features in place. Choose a platform that will allow you to control access to sensitive files in order to protect data. Access permissions can be configured to restrict certain users or groups from viewing, editing, or deleting specific documents. For instance, you may choose to limit access to files that contain client financial information or employee health data.

communication features

To maximise the collaborative capabilities of a document management system, train your team to utilise the platform’s communication features. Many of these platforms allow users to tag each other, leave comments, assign tasks, submit drafts for review, chat, and more. For example, a software development team can use the communication features of their document management platform to streamline their workflow. Developers tag each other in comments for specific code reviews, assign tasks for bug fixes, and use chat features for quick clarifications. This real-time communication improves efficiency and fosters a collaborative environment.This kind of instant communication will not only help with information sharing but will also contribute to the social aspect of collaboration among coworkers.

naming conventions

It is best practice to adopt a standard set of naming conventions for files and folders whenever possible, such as “[ProjectName][DocumentType][Date]”. This makes it easier for team members to find what they’re looking for. If each member of a team is naming their documents in a different way, it can get in the way of seamless collaboration.

Overcoming Challenges in Team-Based Document Collaboration

Adopting any new process or system will come with some challenges. Addressing challenges in document collaboration through training and integration with other platforms directly impacts employee engagement by reducing frustration and enabling a more cohesive team environment. Here are some of the hurdles you might encounter with document collaboration, and how to overcome them.

Integration with other platforms

Your employees have gotten used to using a number of tools and platforms in the course of their workflow. Adopting new technology can be a challenge, but it’s even more frustrating when the old tools and the new ones can’t share information with one another. For example, it is probably important for your document management platform to integrate with your project management software, while it might make your existing file storing and sharing processes obsolete. Consider which ones are no longer working the way you need them to, and which ones should be integrated with your new system.

Training and adoption

It’s natural for there to be a learning curve when implementing any new system. You can encourage your employees to embrace the new system by providing the necessary training to allow them to get comfortable using it. After initial training and onboarding, managers can hold meetings with their teams to work out any bugs and ensure everyone has access to the folders and features they need.

User feedback

Despite the many benefits and advanced capabilities available in document management systems today, no system is truly perfect. Seek user feedback about what features matter most to them during the process of selecting a new document management platform for your organisation. Identify the pain points your employees encounter and the areas of greatest need. Continue this conversation throughout the adoption and implementation process so that you may constantly improve collaboration in your organisation.

Measuring the Impact of Document Management on Team Productivity

How can you measure how effectively your document management system is enhancing team collaboration and justify the investment? There are some objective measurements you can look at to ascertain how well the system is meeting users’ needs. You might decide to measure the impact of their new document management system by tracking the average time it took for representatives to locate and retrieve policy documents before and after its implementation. Of course, qualitative data in the form of feedback from employees can paint a more detailed picture of collaboration at your organisation. When measuring impact, be sure to establish benchmarks and measure against them so you can accurately gauge what kind of effects appear over time.

Conduct regular audits and reviews of the DMS to ensure that it continues to meet the organisation’s evolving needs. Make adjustments and improvements as necessary.

industry Examples In action

Capital One: Capital One implemented a collaborative document management system (DMS) to enhance collaboration and efficiency among its staff. This system allows for easy access and sharing of information across different teams and departments, minimising the reliance on lengthy email exchanges and meetings. The outcome has been quicker decision-making and increased productivity.

Haribo: Haribo, a global confectionery producer with over 7,000 employees, leveraged document management software to increase efficiency and collaboration across its operations. The document management solution was designed to centralise and make accessible a wide range of documents, including correspondence, customer information, invoices, delivery slips, receipts, purchasing and logistics forms, order confirmations, and payroll records, to authorised employees in every department.

City of London: The City of London Corporation significantly enhanced its efficiency and collaboration by deploying Microsoft Teams to over 3,000 staff members. The successful implementation of Microsoft Teams has empowered employees at the City of London Corporation to be more productive and efficient. It has made accessing the right information at the right time easier, facilitating better data and content management within teams or projects in a secure manner.

Transform Teamwork with Document Management

Along with cloud-based DMS, artificial intelligence tools are becoming more widely used at work. As AI continues to evolve, its integration into DMS is expected to enhance efficiency, improve accessibility, and foster smarter collaboration. AI tools can assist in the drafting of documents by suggesting content, correcting errors, and even ensuring that documents meet certain standards or styles. This can lead to a significant reduction in the time required to produce documents, freeing up employees to focus on more strategic tasks. The integration of AI into DMS can lead to higher employee engagement by reducing mundane tasks and enabling a focus on more meaningful work.

To stay competitive in today’s marketplace, collaboration is key. When your people work together in cross-functional teams, creative ideas and novel solutions emerge, leading to a better customer experience as well as a better employee experience. Give your team the tools they need to work together seamlessly with a document management system.

Author: Emily Shaw – Founder, DocFly
Photo credit: StockCake

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