Whether it’s for onboarding new employees or tracking customer orders, paperwork is a necessary part of everyday business. But in this increasingly fast-paced and digital world, many organizations have begun exploring ways of streamlining the processes that go into it. Technology does so much to make our lives easier nowadays – why can’t it help us handle document generation and management more efficiently?
The answer is that it can, with Document Automation software. This article will explain the technology in detail and outline five of the biggest reasons why companies are investing in it for their day-to-day operations.
Document Automation is the process of automating the creation, generation, and modification of documents. It uses a combination of software applications, templates, and rules to automate document-related tasks such as data collection, formatting text or images, generating customized documents from templates, and more.
Document Automation simplifies creating or modifying documents using templates and software. It inputs data from databases and CRMs, customizing documents with data validation and e-signature features. This enhances accuracy, compliance, and customer experience.
The Many Benefits Document Automation Has to Offer
Comparatively speaking,Document Automation is only one small innovation in a sea of business efficiency solutions available today, but its impact is far-reaching. Document Automation has the potential to bring a plethora of benefits to organizations that implement it properly. This next section will walk you through five of the most relevant reasons why you might choose to invest in document automation software for your organizational workflow.
1. Improved Efficiency
The first benefit of Document Automation software is its ability to massively reduce friction in regular business processes. The average administrator’s day is traditionally plagued by a variety of avoidable redundancies, such as manual data entry, cross-referencing, and formatting – all of which can be delegated to a computer.
Workflow automation further empowers staff to quickly create documents from pre-defined templates, populate them with the necessary data fields, and send them off in a timely manner. The software also helps to streamline document review processes, as well as ensure accuracy and uniformity across a variety of files. This culminates in several secondary benefits, such as improved organizational efficiency and quicker turn-around times. Many businesses that implement document automation see their customer satisfaction rates improve significantly as well.
2. Cost Savings
The costs associated with manual document creation and management are quite high. Data cited by the Association for Information and Image Management states that businesses spend an average labor cost of $20 for every document they file. Meanwhile, the time and resources that go into searching for misfiled and lost documents usually cost organizations anywhere between $120 and $250.
In a landscape as competitive as today’s, no one can afford to waste money on such mundane and time-consuming tasks. Automated solutions, however, can mitigate that cost by generating documents quickly and without the need for intervention or effort from staff members.
For organizations that have yet to go completely digital, making the switch with a document automation solution can also help reduce the costs associated with paper, ink cartridges, and other printing supplies.
3. Improved Accuracy
Humans are great at a lot of things, but even the best of us make mistakes. Our brains tend to excel in creative and social tasks, while repetitive tasks can start to become overwhelming and error-prone.
While potential mistakes like typos, incorrect data entry, and outdated formatting have become somewhat of an accepted norm, they actually carry a lot of risk.
Mistakes can result in a wide range of operational and financial issues such as missed deadlines, unnecessary expenses, and delays. Depending on the industry, mistakes can also have a lasting impact on customer relationships and trust.
Document Automation solutions help here by ensuring that all documents can be produced accurately and quickly on a consistent basis. Customers don’t miss important information and organizations lower costs by reducing errors.
4. Enhanced Compliance
To continue on the topic of industry-specific concerns, many fields require an extra level of diligence when it comes to document processing. Laws like the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) have strict regulations on the handling of patient information. Documents and the systems they’re stored in have to meet specific requirements for sending and storing data, as well as ensuring that access to important information is controlled.
Another concern is the availability of document processing solutions that meet industry-specific needs. For example, the healthcare sector has to follow standards outlined in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), while the Sarbanes Oxley (SOX) Act details guidelines for financial data and reporting practices.
There’s a human element to compliance of course, but technology can eliminate a great portion of the risk. Automation tools are purposefully built to help companies manage processes and apply rules consistently to how documents are created and stored. Document workflows can be tailored to specific needs and help enforce document policies while also improving the speed, accuracy, and security across for a variety of related tasks.
In addition, enhancing compliance often translates to even more const savings. The aforementioned laws governing security standards in sensitive industries carry heavy fines for non-compliance. Automation can help reduce risk and increase efficiency, in turn minimizing the chance of receiving penalties for improper document management. It also serves as an excellent audit trail for companies that may need to trace a particular document or track the process of a certain step.
5. Simplified Collaboration
Cloud-based document automation software works by automating the process of creating, editing, and sharing documents via the cloud. This is different from traditional on-premises tools that require manual downloading and uploading. Automation tools make it easier for teams to collaborate, allowing them to quickly review documents with colleagues in different locations without having to manually send files back and forth. The best solutions are those that integrate with popular cloud storage services, enabling users to automatically store documents in the right place.
Integrations with regular business platforms are another great perk. Combining Document Automation with CRM systems like Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Salesforce can streamline almost any routine document process relying on data for those systems. And, software with API integration can be customized to integrate with virtually any other application.
Ready to Use Document Automation to Its Fullest Potential?
Taking the time to learn more about the benefits of document automation software is a great first step in streamlining your organization’s workflow. But it’s not the last. Making the most out of any solution requires thinking about specific business use cases, and comparing features to find the best solution for your specific needs.
Finally, you’ll want to make sure that the document automation software is easy to use and intuitive enough for all of your team members to learn quickly. User-friendly features such as drag and drop, automated file organization, and easy access to templates are just a few major capabilities to consider, but usability isn’t just about major features, it’s also about the overall design of and knowledged needed to learn the software.
With Experlogix Document Automation, for example, document templates can be built using a similar interface to Microsoft Word. In other words, you can build some pretty advanced templates without knowing how to script or code.
Unlocking the full benefits of Document Automation software is ultimately about transforming processes to create better employee or customer experiences. That’s why it’s important to get the right solution for both your organization and the people closest to the work.
If you’re ready to see how easy it is to get started with Experlogix, request a demo from our team today.