iManage Cloud vs. On-Premise  – Which model fits your company?

Document Management Systems are becoming increasingly important in organizing information flows, especially because the amount of information within many organizations is growing rapidly through multiple sources.

There are many questions you need to ask yourself before implementing your Document Management Systems (DMS). In the Cloud vs. On-Premise – which type fits your company best? As a business enabler, we want to explore all of these questions and compare the two types of storage to give you a sufficient overview of the respective pros and cons of both types.

iManage On-Premise

On-premise is a usage and licensing model for software applications where the software is installed on your own hardware. In the case of commercial on-premise software, the licensee acquires or leases certain software and runs it independently and under its own responsibility on its own hardware, i.e. its own computers, servers or even in its own data centre.

The major advantage of on-site implementations is often the high degree of customization that can be made to the system. While software in the Cloud is often immutable, the on-premise implementation fully acquires the software and provides the opportunity to program customizations against the source code to make adjustments possible to the behaviour of the application.

iManage Cloud

Cloud computing describes an IT infrastructure that is made accessible via the internet. Application software, storage space or computing power is usually offered as a service via Cloud. For example, a document management system no longer has to be installed on local computers but is made available to the user via the Internet. However, this differs a bit for the iManage solution. Although iManage is accessible via the web browser, our customers primarily use iManage from the Outlook integration, which means that DMS-related software must still be installed on the PC.

The user usually rents a license and can freely use the functions of the DMS system in the Cloud. In this context, we also speak of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). The SaaS model saves the user the purchase and operating costs of a system because the IT management is carried out entirely by the provider. Maintenance work and updates are also carried out at the provider. We listed all benefits of the iManage Cloud here.

For this service, the user usually pays a monthly fee based on the size of his license. The data that the user enters into the system is completely stored on the servers of the provider so that the matter of legal requirements always applies. More detailed information about the cloud can be found here.

Cloud vs. On-Premise

We want to take a closer look at the main differences between the On-premise and Cloud and highlight the respective pre-existing advantages and disadvantages of both types. Ultimately, this should serve to give you a rough overview of which licensing model fits which type of company.


As mentioned earlier, local implementation is much more flexible when it comes to customization. An IT software partner can adapt the system directly to the needs and processes of a company so that the company does not have to adapt to new practices, but the system adapts accordingly. This is especially useful for large companies and companies with very specific business processes.

Otherwise, Cloud systems offer all the usual functions and can cover the processes of a company regardless of size or industry, but without being able to make small specific adjustments without further delay. In this respect, the Cloud is particularly suitable for smaller companies, with classic structures and a not so wide proprietary IT infrastructure.

Cost of DMS

Both license models are based on different payment models. While the cost in the Cloud is usually a monthly fee for the number of licenses (users), the software is completely purchased when deployed locally. This usually entails high initial costs and rather lower monthly costs, which may still be paid to the manufacturer for further development of the system.

Which cost model makes more sense for which company also depends on a company’s infrastructure. For example, if you have your own data centre, local implementation can be much easier than if it has yet to be purchased. The costs in the Cloud are considerably more flexible, as different license models can be purchased here based on user and month. Ultimately, a company only pays for the number of users and functions that are really needed.


An important topic that comes up again and again when asked about the licensing model is security. Since the introduction of the GDPR, the topic of data protection has become an everyday occurrence and companies have to do a lot to keep their customers’ data sufficiently secure. Now many are shying away from the cloud, as control over their own data appears to have been lost. And yes, the data is usually stored in large data centres, which are often located abroad.

On the one hand, this means that corresponding contracts must be concluded with the Cloud provider and, on the other hand, there is no longer any need to protect the server. The major Cloud providers are keen to keep your data secure, often better than companies can themselves. Security is one of the most important selling points. That is why providers pay special attention to this. Ultimately, you always have to ask yourself how secure is the data on your own servers?

Ultimately, these can usually be hacked much more easily, only the insignificance of a single corporate server often protects against such attacks. The question about the nature of your own IT infrastructure also arises here. Can a company adequately protect its own servers or not?

Besides protecting your own data. the regulations based on your country can also be a major decision for keeping your data inhouse rather than sourcing it out to the cloud storing it in another country with other regulations being set for protecting securing and termination of your data.

How we can help

At IRIS Nederland we take information management seriously. Information is the source of every organization and therefor requires intelligent, future-proof solutions which meet the needs of organizations and their users. We keep that promise to our customers for over 20 years now. Whether you are looking to implement a new document- or any other information management solution: we have the experience to support you with such a project from start to finish.

Get in touch with us if you want to know more how our solutions and services can make your organization work more efficient, secure and smarter.

About the author

Rachelle Beugels
Rachelle BeugelsInside Sales