What are the stages of the document management system?

The documentation shows how our effort is going. Whether paper-based or digital, they offer information about the state of the document and the activities that have been made. For instance, they display if a document is being processed or has already been made available, whether comments are allowed, and whether changes can still be made. Documents go through a Document Management System lifecycle, which can consist of several processes depending on the document’s type, format, and application purpose.

When a document has many versions, the most recent version and revisions can always be shared, ensuring that everybody works from the most recent version.

The document management system life cycle’s six stages

A document’s life cycle or the data processed for action is divided into six phases. Document items and accompanying document statuses in each phase are defined differently throughout the document lifecycle. They depend on each document’s workflow, the type of document being processed, and the company’s document task requirements. Additionally, each processing step introduces unique demands for data management and the underlying rights and role management.

As a result, the following steps are part of the digital document lifecycle:

Producing the document

Documents may be received via many channels, such as email, fax, and so on, or they may be prepared entirely from scratch by the company’s workers.

The business must use the appropriate software for data collection, electronic document processing, and computerised text recognition (OCR).

Depending on the file format or requirements, Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, and Excel are the preferred document-generating programmes for most sectors.

Searchable editing and indexing

The editing and subsequent classification processes are part of the second phase of the document lifecycle system. This ensures that the information in the document can serve various purposes and that it will be simple to find when it is distributed

The document will be available for simultaneous use by staff members. Collaboration on documents is another name for this, and it may be done via programmes like Google Drive, DropBox, and others.

Document revision, security, version control, synchronisation, and change management are additional measures that can be taken at this point.

Distributing or sending the document

After editing and indexing, the document is subsequently shared or sent to the appropriate person. Whether internal employees, a particular department, or external users like clients, consumers, or investors, this phase would ensure that all parties could use the document and, if necessary, provide input.

Customers might, for instance, complete paperwork online and return them to the organisations as needed.

Use of the document actively.

Then, to prevent unauthorised individuals from accessing and manipulating the data on the centralised system, it’s vital to identify who has access to it. This phase aids the business in determining which level of management is authorised to modify system documentation.

Access could be denied to select parties entirely or restricted to include the read-only feature. The document’s lifespan allows for a possible downgrading to phase three following revision. When all attempts have been made to avoid alteration of the data, the document can be used actively.

The features of the document’s permissions may change depending on who accesses or uses it.


The document may then be archived in the system after being used appropriately by the necessary parties. There, it can be retrieved for further study or in the event of a compliance audit.

This guarantees that the papers are stored following the relevant regulations and are safe from fraud and manipulation. Digitally stored files must be appropriately guarded against modifications because they may be vulnerable.

A document should be erased under legal requirements when it is no longer needed. Nevertheless, this step may not be necessary depending on the company’s existing document management system, requirements, or industry compliance.

Therefore, even though the document management lifecycle system may change, some processes (such as the creation and archiving) never change.


In conclusion, it’s critical to understand the steps involved in creating and managing your documents since this affects your DMLS.

Following the definition of your document management stages (which may resemble or differ from those we’ve outlined above), you should think about optimising your system via Workflow Automation.

Investigate ways to make your document management cycle more effective to achieve that. Most likely, automation, appropriate workflow, internal standard operating procedures (SOPs), and other factors are involved.