What Is Document Tracking and How Does It Work?

Kamran Shafii |

Digitizing business systems has become a requirement for today’s organizations. Not only do clients and customers depend on seamless experiences, but internal teams need advanced digital collaboration tools to meet those needs and work more efficiently. These digital enhancements improve workflows and ensure workers and leaders can manage documents from any work location or device.

Document tracking and management have become a priority for any business dealing with electronic documents. The process refers to managing aspects like access, editing, collaboration, comments, sending, processing, signing, verifying, and more. Fortunately, new digital systems let you track and manage documents from a single location with ease.

But how does a document-tracking system or file-tracking software work? What key features can help you create better document management systems? This guide walks through everything you need to know.

What Is a Document Tracking System?

There are many different document tracking and management systems now on the market. They help businesses improve file management since everything can be done digitally and on the cloud. These systems help you and your team stay organized, send a range of document types, view recent changes and timestamps, make edits, and get PDF documents signed. 

Document tracking systems also help key people track where documents are within a process and gain information like who currently has the document. This kind of tracking allows staff members to improve workflows by identifying where essential documents are and where in a process they get stuck. It’s much easier to nudge people and send them reminders when you can uncover where things are getting held up.

How Does a Document Tracking System Work?

Document tracking is often a component of a larger document management system. Document management addresses every moving part of creating, sharing, editing, and finalizing documents. On the other hand, tracking focuses on following the status of these documents, including when they are sent for electronic signature

Document tracking systems often rely on tools like automation to improve processes. For example, the system could send notifications to team members or clients as reminders to complete an edit or signature. 

Tracking systems also provide essential data on anyone involved in document collaboration, including customers or entire sales teams. You can even use document analytics to understand if your team members are meeting your goals and who may need additional resources. 

An excellent document tracking tool gives you actionable insights like: 

  • Who has access to documents
  • When a document is shared
  • Who has worked on the document and when they worked on it
  • Progress made by each person within the document
  • Edits or comments made by each participant
  • Deadlines for finalizing the document

This kind of information allows you to keep better records, hold team members accountable, reach timeline goals, and verify the authenticity of your essential business documents. A trackable document opens up many improvement opportunities and helps you identify ways to make your business more efficient.

Benefits of Using File Tracking Software

Some business leaders may not think that using document tracking software is worthwhile. Perhaps an organization has been handling documents manually for years, and its leaders don’t see a reason to reinvent the wheel. However, document management and tracking software can bring any business several key benefits.

1. Get Actionable Insights to Manage Your Documents

When paper documents were still the norm, you could route something for review or signature and never see it again. You risked that your essential data would get lost in the everyday shuffle of business documents.

Often, emailing documents can create similar challenges, as stakeholders may not see a file come in, or they could easily forget about it. This leads to roadblocks in processes because teams don’t know where documents are getting stuck or whether they’re authentic.

Online management tools ensure that doesn’t happen. They allow you to see data about what’s going on with your documents every step of the way. You can see who has viewed the file, how long they worked on it, the changes each person made, and timestamps for edits and comments. 

2. Set Document Controls

You also need to be able to set up controls on your electronic documents to be able to reach your goals and meet deadlines. Setting up a document tracking system means you can also control who has access to your files and create different access levels for different people. 

For example, perhaps some staff members only need view-only access to a document to gain valuable information but not make any changes to the file. Business leaders may need to have a different level of access. You can control all of these components with the right document-tracking tool.

3. Collaborate on Business Documents

One of the most popular features of a document tracker is improving collaboration. Teams need the ability to work together to generate, alter, view, approve, and sign documents with ease. A simple system ensures that the workflow moves quickly and smoothly.

Tracking systems keep records of everything that happens on a file, ensuring that team members know what the document status is at any given moment and who made what changes. This helps everyone stay on the same page, improve communication, and maintain accountability and transparency.

How To Find and Choose Document Tracking Services

Your business needs the right document tracking services to improve its documentation approach. Document management software and document trackers help you create and meet your goals, whether you deal with contracts or other key business documents.

jSign provides electronic document services to help you improve your business’s processes. With jSign, you can send and sign your documents in just a few minutes, tracking document data along the way. jSign allows you to keep tabs on what’s going on with your files, giving you a record to verify the authenticity of your documents and view a document’s status at any time. 

Learn more about jSign’s document tracking service today.

Kamran Shafii
Manager, SEO Content

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