Creating a Records Management Plan: Is a DMS or Cloud Storage Better?

There are two main ways of managing files digitally—DMS systems and cloud storage—and while each provide the same basic advantages of going digital, they also have differences that can make one better than the other depending on factors like how much data you need to manage and what your budget looks like.

Learn more in this video or its transcription below about what exactly a DMS and cloud storage is, how they’re different, and get a side-by-side comparison with examples of situations where either a DMS or a cloud storage system would be best.

Video Transcription

Which Is Best: DMS Systems or Cloud Storage

DMS systems and cloud storage are the primary methods used for managing newly-scanned documents, and both provide immediate benefits like simplified file access and sharing.

Despite that though, there are also some distinct differences between a DMS and cloud storage that can make one option more ideal than the other depending on your needs.

What Is a DMS?

what is electronic document management system dmsDocument management systems (DMS) use a computer system and software to provide and organized structure for storing digital documents after scanning.

A DMS stores all data on a centralized server and provide a range of customizable capabilities, including the ability to convert records to various digital formats, index files according to custom specifications, use keyword search tools to find documents, and edit and share files quickly.

What Is Cloud Storage?

Cloud storage is similar to a DMS system in how all files are stored on a centralized server, however with the cloud it’s an external server managed by a third party provider.

While the files may not be stored internally like with a DMS, many of the same functionalities like remote access and file keyword search are still available with cloud storage.

DMS vs Cloud Storage: Side-by-Side Comparison

DMS Systems

  • Managed by IT teams internally
  • Cost of DMS software and equipment is a single, up-front price
  • Provides advanced tools like redaction, but they need self-configuration

Cloud Storage

  • Managed by cloud storage providers externally
  • Cost of cloud storage is a recurring, subscription-based price (SaaS)
  • Provides basic tools like file search and editing as part of the service, but limits user to only tools included by the provider

When to Use a DMS or Cloud Storage

Businessman using a digital tablet to discuss informationWhen it comes to turning back to now evaluate your own needs and what option will work best, there are several questions to ask yourself.

For example, how much data do you have to manage? Would your budget fit an upfront cost or is subscription pricing better? Would you have an IT team to manage an in-house DMS?

Situations Where a DMS Will Work Best

  • When you have servers with large file inventories, using a DMS will be faster since it doesn’t rely on an internet connection.
  • A DMS is more customizable, making it ideal for when you need additional tools like file redaction and tiered access controls.
  • DMS systems are easier to integrate with already-existing company software systems like patient portals in healthcare.

Situations Where Cloud Storage Will Work Best

  • When you don’t have enough space to store a server or the employees to have an internal IT team, cloud storage will be ideal since providers handle the IT aspect.
  • When employees regularly work remotely, cloud storage will be best since it only requires an internet connection to access files.
  • For smaller companies and limited budgets, cloud storage’s SaaS pricing is more flexible than an upfront DMS investment, and cloud storage also doesn’t require purchasing any extra equipment.

Comparing DMS Systems and Cloud Storage

Get Free Quotes on DMS and Cloud Storage Integration Today

At Record Nations we partner with a nationwide network of DMS system and cloud storage providers to help you find secure, reliable, and affordable storage options.

Join Amazon, Google, and countless other companies and organizations we’ve helped find the digital records management option that best fits their needs by giving us a call at (866) 385-3706, filling out the form to your right, or contacting us directly with our live chat.