The Best Document Management Software to Use in 2022

In-Depth Review of Tools to Streamline Your Document Workflow

Ogi Djuraskovic
Updated: September 3rd, 2022
9 min read
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The Best Document Management Software to Use in 2022

Documentation is essential for an organization of any size. However, creating, approving, tracking, and signing documents can take up too much of your time. Things tend to get even more complicated when your teams need to collaborate on documents. 

Utilizing document management software is the only way to make these things easier and more time-efficient. However, there are so many of these tools available. How do you pick the one that reflects your needs while ensuring that it’s reliable and bug-free?

EDITORS’ CHOICE

I rolled up my sleeves and did extensive research and testing. I’ve discovered that the following ten document management software tools are worth your money and consideration. 

Top 10 best document management software

If you don’t want to waste time going back and forth when handling documentation, you need the best document management tool that you can afford. It’s the only way to ensure your that documents are top-notch so that you can focus on more pressing matters.

Here are the ten best document management software solutions:


DocuWare — Best cloud option

docuware homepage

DocuWare is one of the leading cloud service provider companies. DocuWare Cloud is an end-to-end solution for all of your document management needs.

Along with centralizing your documentation operations, DocuWare Cloud also offers excellent automation capabilities to empower your team regardless of their size. 

Key features

  • Single central digital system – manually centralize and process your business documents.
  • Automation – completely automate documentation processes such as contract management and invoice processing.
  • Stay compliant – comply with laws and regulations such as the GDPR and the HIPAA.
  • Mobile support – streamline document creation and management across all devices and on the go.
  • Integration – integrate your document management platform with ERP, CRM, and other systems.

Plans and pricing 

Docuware offers four subscription plans: DocuWare Cloud 4, DocuWare Cloud 15, DocuWare Cloud 40, and DocuWare Cloud 100. 

Prices are available only upon request, and every tier comes with all features and capabilities.

DocuWare Cloud 4
  • Price upon request  

For four users and with 20 GB of cloud storage.

DocuWare Cloud 15
  • Price upon request  

For 15 users and with 50 GB of cloud storage.

DocuWare Cloud 40
  • Price upon request  

For 40 users and with 500 GB of cloud storage.

DocuWare Cloud 100
  • Price upon request  

For 100 users and with 1,000 GB of cloud storage.

Visit DocuWare for additional information >>

signNow — Best for automating workflows

signnow document software

The signNow document management platform comes with state-of-the-art airSlate Bots to help you to automate workflows and save time.

You will have complete control and overview of your documents throughout their entire lifecycle, ensuring that each is ready for eSignature. 

Key features 

  • Requests – streamline the approval process by requesting additional documents from one screen.
  • Notifications – leverage notifications to inform key team members about every document’s status.
  • eSigning – easily add signature fields to all documents and enable signature on mobile, including support for multiple signers.
  • Workflow automation – connect document templates, pre-fill documents with business data, and automate workflows for better efficiency.
  • Kiosk mode – use your iPhone or iPad to collect in-person signatures.

Plans and pricing

signNow offers four tiers of subscription-based plans:

Business
  • $8 per month per user 
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $96

The Business plan supports a maximum of ten users and provides access to eSigning, basic fields, a mobile app, unlimited templates, and advanced threat protection. 

Business premium
  • $15 per month per user 
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $180

The Business Premium plan comes with everything offered in the Business plan, plus reminders, notifications, personalized branding, signing link invites, and sending in bulk.

Enterprise
  • $30 per month per user 
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $360

The Enterprise plan comes with everything offered in Business Premium, plus conditional documents, calculated and conditional fields, signer attachments, and payment requests. 

airSlate Business Cloud
  • $50 per month per user 
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $600

The airSlate Business Cloud plan comes with everything available in Enterprise, as well as access to phone support, organizational dashboard, HIPAA compliance, SSO, CRM/ERP integration, Kiosk mode, and more.

Visit signNow for additional information >>

Microsoft SharePoint — Best feature-rich solution

microsoftsharepoint homepage

Microsoft SharePoint is produced by the world’s top software company. While it was created to facilitate website development, SharePoint has found many other uses thanks to powerful document management features. 

Key features 

  • Information rights management – protect sensitive information and intellectual property.
  • Easy navigation – with improved document library accessibility, you can find all of your documents in seconds.
  • Complete user control – share folders and documents and approve or deny access requests from one screen.
  • Enhanced security – create encrypted documents and set the expiration times for external users.
  • Integration – integrate with OneDrive and MS Office for even more features.

Plans and pricing

Microsoft SharePoint offers three subscription plans:

SharePoint Online Plan 1
  • $5 per user per month
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $60

This plan caters to the needs of small and mid-sized businesses. It comes with 1 TB of cloud storage, document version and access control, and integration with OneDrive.

SharePoint Online Plan 2
  • $10 per user per month
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $120

Plan 2 offers unlimited cloud storage, advanced security, and streamlines electronic document search for audits and litigation.

Office 356 E3
  • $23 per user per month
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $276

This plan includes everything available in Plan 2, plus all office applications, automation workflow, unlimited users, a teamwork hub, and additional OneNote features.

Visit Microsoft SharePoint for additional information >>

Templafy — Most well-rounded software

templafy homepage

Templafy is a comprehensive solution for document management. It’s one of the most well-rounded platforms and ships with numerous capabilities. 

This tool can help you to automate the document creation process and secure and share your documents on the go.

Key features 

  • Brand activation – brand all of your employee-created documents with one click.
  • Document automation – use pre-built or create new templates to enable all teams to create compliant business documents.
  • Document governance – adequately classify your documents by leveraging metadata.
  • Email signature – manage email signature with ease to prevent off-brand email signatures.
  • Document tracking – track your documents’ performance on one screen.

Plans and pricing

Templafy offers custom-tailored pricing plans available only upon request.

Visit Templafy for additional information >>

PandaDoc — Perfect for standardizing workflow

pandadoc document software

PandaDoc is an all-in-one solution for managing the entire document lifecycle. You can use it to manage document creation, editing, and signing. 

PandaDoc provides excellent features to help standardize your workflow and increase operational efficiency.

Key features 

  • Workflows – import your workflow to spot bottlenecks, make improvements, and standardize your operations.
  • Streamlined approvals – assign persons for document approvals and deliver the documents automatically.
  • eSignatures – streamline sending legally binding documents by adding eSignatures.
  • Stunning docs – use the built-in editor to create visually stunning documents.
  • Integrations – integrate with dozens of tools using a customizable API.

Plans and pricing

PandaDoc offers four subscription plans:

Free eSign
  • Free of charge

The Free eSign plan offers unlimited legally binding eSignatures, document uploads, a mobile app, and payments.

Essentials
  • $19 per month per user
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $228 

The Essentials plan includes everything included in the Free eSign plan, plus templates, a drag-and-drop editor, pricing tables, and document analytics.

Business
  • $49 per month per user
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $588 

The Business plan comes with everything available in the Essentials, plus CRM and Zapier integrations, a content library, custom branding, and approval workflows.

Enterprise
  • Price upon request

The Enterprise plan comes with everything offered in the Business plan, plus SSO support, custom user roles, Salesforce integration, user performance and content reporting, and notarization.

Visit PandaDoc for additional information >>

M-Files — Best for ease of use 

mfiles homepage

M-Files is a powerful metadata-driven document management solution. Despite the range of features and capabilities offered, this platform is still easy to use. 

M-Files remains a top pick for companies interested in fast onboarding times.

Key features 

  • Ease of use – leverage the intuitive user interface to quickly onboard employees with limited technical backgrounds.
  • Metadata-driven document management – streamline document-centered tasks from one screen.
  • Workflow automation – automatically route draft documents to relevant approvers and reviewers.
  • Collaboration – use metadata and AI to collaborate with internal teams easily.
  • Compliance enforcement – automate governance and policies to improve risk containment.

Plans and pricing

M-Files offers three tiers: M-Files Base, M-Files Team, and M-Files Business, including a free 30-day trial. The prices of subscription tiers are available on request.

M-Files Bas
  • Price upon request

This on-premises-only solution offers many features, including search, multi-point access, automated workflows, and MS Office and Teams integration.

M-Files Team
  • Price upon request

M-Files Team supports both cloud and self-hosted options. Along with everything in M-Files Base, it has advanced search, importing tools, and a reporting module.

M-Files Business
  • Price upon request

M-Files Business comes with everything from M-Files Team plus advanced document comparison, customer support priority, and M-Files AI capabilities.

Visit M-Files for additional information >>

MasterControl — Excellent for compliance

mastercontrol homepage

If you are looking for a solution to help you stay compliant with various laws and regulations while automating the document control process, you should consider MasterControl.

While primarily focusing on reducing compliance costs, this solution offers excellent collaboration capabilities. 

Key features 

  • Automated document control – automatically track document revision history, approvals, retrievals, and distribution. 
  • Electronic signatures – ensure that all of your documents have 21 CFR Part 11 compliant electronic signatures.
  • Track audits – leverage a time-stamped audit trail to check when the users audited each document.
  • Easy search – use the search feature to find records with ease.
  • Enhanced collaboration – easily collaborate on documents with in-house employees and external shareholders.

Plans and pricing

MasterControl pricing is available upon request.

Visit MasterControl for additional information >>

XaitPorter — Superb collaboration features

xaitporter homepage

XaitPorter is a top-notch document management platform that empowers teams to collaborate on documents effortlessly.

Its capabilities will enable you to work on a variety of documents, including reports, tenders, and proposals, regardless of their complexity.

Key features 

  • Custom layouts – create visually stunning documents using your brand colors.
  • One document – enable all teams to work on one document simultaneously.
  • Auto formatting – focus on the content while the platform automatically formats and numbers the document.
  • Content reuse – store all of your documents in one database and reuse them effortlessly.
  • Exporting – export your documents in any preferred format, including MS Word and PDF.

Plans and pricing

XaitPorter pricing is available on request.

Visit XaitPorter for additional information >>

ClickUp — Ideal for building internal and external documents

clickup homepage

ClickUp is a comprehensive business app with numerous capabilities, including tasks, chat, goals, and document management. Its Docs feature can help you improve document management efforts, create and optimize workflows, and enable collaboration.

Key features 

  • Nested pages and styling options – create any document you wish, style it to reflect your branding, and add nested pages.
  • Collaboration – enable your teams to create and edit documents in real-time, assign actions, convert text to tasks, and add comments.
  • Workflows – connect your documents to workflows to stay on top of your projects.
  • Docs categorization – keep all of your documents tidy and store them to facilitate access and searchability.
  • Privacy and edit controls – protect your documents by assigning user permission rights.

Plans and pricing

ClickUp offers five subscription plans:

Free
  • Free of charge

The Free Plan offers 100 MB storage, unlimited tasks, collaborative docs, real-time chat, and native time tracking.

Unlimited
  • $5 per member per month
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $60

Unlimited provides everything available in the Free plan, plus unlimited storage, integrations, dashboards, custom fields, user groups, and agile reporting.

Business
  • $12 per member per month
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $144

This plan offers everything in Unlimited and also features custom exporting, advanced automation, public sharing, and workload management. 

Business Plus
  • $19 per member per month
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $228

Along with everything available in the Business plan, this plan adds custom role creation, custom permissions, and admin training webinars. 

Enterprise
  • Price upon request

The Enterprise plan offers everything in Business Plus as well as additional features such as white labeling, default personal views, MSA & HIPAA compliance, onboarding training, and a dedicated success manager. 

Visit ClickUp for additional information >>

Bit — Fantastic customization options 

bit homepage

Bit is a simple yet powerful document management solution equipped with many features to address various business needs. You can use it to streamline document creation, search, and management.

Key features

  • Customizable workflow – quickly move content across teams while maintaining complete insight and control.
  • Workspace insight – see which users created and deleted all documents as well as who is currently working.
  • Content library – categorize your digital documents how you see fit to improve searchability.
  • Document customization – use pre-built templates, customize layouts, brand your documents, and leverage automated tables to create stunning documents.
  • Real-time collaboration – enable your teams to work on documents in real-time and track their progress.

Plans and pricing

Bit offers three subscription plans to companies:

Free Plan
  • Free of charge

The Free Plan offers document management for up to five members and 50 documents, including a content library, multiple import options, a 5 MB file limit, and 1 GB storage.

Pro Plan
  • $8 per user per month
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $96

The Pro Plan comes with everything in the Free Plan, plus unlimited members and documents, multiple export options, and unlimited version history. The file limit is 200 MB, and cloud storage is 200 GB.

Business Plan
  • $15 per user per month
    1-year plan billed as one payment of $180

The Business Plan provides everything in the Pro Plan, plus trackable documents, unlimited storage, free guest access, personalized team demos, and more.

Visit Bit for additional information >>

How to choose the right option for your business 

Choosing the right document management solution for your business can be challenging. This applies especially to business owners who have never had the chance to use one of these tools.

The following tips can help you to make an informed business decision and secure the tool that perfectly fits your company. 

Cloud or on-premise? 

Do you have a proper IT infrastructure and enough people on your IT team to handle on-premise installation, maintenance, and updates? If so, then you should consider on-premise solutions. They are generally more affordable than cloud solutions.

However, if you don’t want to handle anything listed above, you might want to narrow down your options to cloud-only document management platforms. 

Level of security 

Business documents often contain sensitive information and, in many cases, intellectual property.

If you want to keep your documents safe and secure, you should carefully review the security features of document management tools. 

Features and functionalities 

Features and functionalities stand for a particular document management solution’s capability.

Your primary goal is to find a solution that reflects your business needs and goals. So, before you go software shopping, define your goals and needs and outline them in a spreadsheet to ensure that your future document management solution is a perfect match for your specific operations. 

Ease of use and user experience 

New business systems almost always cause disruptions. However, you can minimize the potential disruption and streamline employee onboarding if you choose a platform that’s easy to use and provides an excellent user experience.

Consult your team managers and employees who handle documents daily to choose a solution that they find most suitable for implementation.

Costs 

Unless you want to use one of the free options mentioned above, you will have to pay fees on a monthly or yearly basis.

When assessing whether a business system is affordable or not, you should take into account the listed features and the prices of plans that you can use when upscaling or downscaling your business. It will help you to better understand the offer and choose the option that you can afford.

Compliance needs 

As we mentioned above, some document management solutions focus more on helping clients to comply with relevant laws and regulations.

If your compliance needs are a priority, choosing one of these solutions could be a better choice than picking software that offers more features in general.

Best options to consider 

Sometimes business owners don’t have the time to research and test too very many options. They need much shorter lists of business software solutions to choose from. That’s why I am providing my top three options to consider. Let’s have a look. 

The most cost-effective option 

Microsoft SharePoint

Starts at $5 per month

Microsoft SharePoint is the most cost-effective solution suitable for small and mid-sized businesses.

While it does come with a 1 TB cloud storage limit, its basic plan also includes must-have document management features such as document version and access control.

Top free option 

Bit

Free

Bit is the top free option on this list. It does come with file size and storage limits, but you will have access to all of the essential features that you’ll need to manage your documents without spending anything. You can always upgrade to a paid plan to access more storage and additional features.

Best integrations 

PandaDoc is a document management platform with the strongest integration capabilities. It supports integrations with popular business tools, including CRM and ERP systems.

More importantly, it comes with a customizable API to help you to integrate and use it with any of your other business systems, including your website.

FAQs

Who needs document management software? 

Every business needs document management software. With a good solution in your toolbox, you can organize all of your documents in one place. You can easily find and track critical files, optimize workflow, and stay compliant with relevant laws and regulations. 

What are the key features to look for in document management software? 

While document management software can have dozens of features, the most crucial are search function, user permission access, revision history, workflow automation, and mobile access. 

What are the benefits of cloud document management?

A cloud document management platform can help reduce operating costs because you won’t have to invest in new servers, computers, and local storage. You will have the flexibility to manage documents on demand and upscale or downscale your operations when necessary. 


Cloud access also improves accessibility since everyone with an internet connection can collaborate on documents. Finally, you will have an easier time following regulatory compliance mandates and keeping your documents safe and secure.

Conclusion 

I used a proven methodology when sourcing the best document management software. I considered the ease of use, user experience, pricing, features, and success stories. 

My goal is to provide you with a list of comprehensive document management platforms that are reliable, battle-proven, and answer unique business needs. All of the tools on this list are popular and also have upcoming updates and improvements.

Before you make your final decision, I recommend that you carefully review your options to choose a platform that aligns with your specific document management needs while providing you with opportunities to improve and optimize your processes.

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