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Cloud Document Management or On-Premise: Find The Right Path For You

Cloud document management vs. on-premise

For organizations aware of the power that comes with digitally accessing, tracking, and securing a multitude of documents in one system, the next choice becomes a tougher one: Cloud or on-premise? What's the right path for you? 

It’s been said before that The 3 C’s of life are choices, chances, and changes.

When it comes to document workflow, the chance to improve slow, ineffective, and error-prone manual document workflow processes necessitates change. Changing to a digitized business process via a Document Management System (DMS) can impact productivity and your customer's overall experience. For a growing number of organizations today, DMS is undoubtedly the right path for the road ahead.

In fact, the choice to implement a document management system is becoming clearer every year for organizations. The worldwide market for document management software was valued at $4.89 billion USD in 2019. It is projected to reach $10.17 billion by 2025, according to ReportLinker.

For organizations aware of the power that comes with digitally accessing, tracking, and securing a multitude of documents in one system, the next choice becomes a tougher one: Cloud or on-premise? What's the right path for you? 

  • Cloud Document Management: a  data storing and managing software that controls and organizes documents stored on multiple servers and accessed through the Internet.
  • On-Premise Document Management: A data storing and managing software with data servers installed on the premises of the organization.

Consultation with a document management specialist will thoroughly analyze your environment and help you choose the right fit for you. But in the spirit of cloud vs on-premise, here is a starting point for deciding your best route for harnessing the power of a DMS.

Clearing the Path: What's the Difference in DMS and CMS

What's with the acronyms?  DMS (Document Management System) and CMS (Content Management System) are terms that often get used interchangeably — and although they perform similar functions, there are key differences. Most notably, a DMS works with structured documents (PDF, Word, PowerPoint, etc.), with a primary goal of workflow management. A CMS, meanwhile, manages a broader range of information, such as audio, video, and web content, and focuses on storing, retrieving, and publishing content.

For our purposes here, we'll be referring primarily to a DMS. 

Choose the Right Path For You: 5 Items to Consider Between Cloud and On-Premise DMS.

1. Cost of Engagement. 

In an on-premise scenario, your organization is responsible for the software and also server hardware, space, and power consumption, making your upfront cost considerably larger. In a cloud scenario, organizations pay only for the user licenses it needs, without upkeep or maintenance costs. The idea of a predictable monthly charge can be seen as advantageous for many.

A time you might consider on-premise? If you are an organization with hundreds of users. With that upfront cost in mind, in many cases, with the absence of month-to-month subscription costs (In the case of a cloud-based model), organizations can see a return on investment by years two and three.

2. Security/Compliance Issues.

Opinions vary on the more secure option here – and much of it depends on your organization and how security conscious you are already. Cloud services generally provide compliance peace of mind, reputable backup, and automatic updates and patches. While this is a plus for organizations that already dedicate IT staff to cyber security, any cloud-based provider should be properly vetted.

3. Mobility for your users.

One big advantage that comes with a cloud setup, all you need is a web browser. In the age of hybrid work, cloud services make it easier for remote workers to collaborate seamlessly with those in the office.

4. Maintenance involved for staff. 

In an on-premise scenario, you are often responsible for maintaining and managing the solution and all storage upgrades, system updates, etc. The advantage? You’ve constructed your system, and you own it. Usually, in a SaaS situation, the hosting company is responsible for upgrading and maintaining the hardware or software. A cloud solution is also typically more scalable because additional resources can more easily be added.

5. Complete control/cloud-weariness. 

The reality is, a large portion of today’s marketplace is simply not ready for the cloud – storing patient records or confidential employee information off-premise just makes some executives shutter. An on-premise solution can give these professionals peace of mind.

But hesitancy to trust the cloud is shrinking. According to predictions from Gartner, global spending on cloud services is expected to reach over $482 billion in 2022, up from $313 billion in 2020.

Have questions about how your organization can organize your content and streamline the way you handle documents? Not sure if a cloud or on-premise solution is right for you? Click below to talk with a Datamax Document Management Specialist!


Topics: Document Management Document Workflow Cloud Technology