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Guest Post How to Boost Productivity With Intelligent Document Automation 1 | Business Express

How to Boost Productivity With Intelligent Document Automation


By Krupesh Bhat, Founder, SignDesk



Krupesh Bhat 1 | Business Express
Krupesh Bhat

In today’s rapid business environment, productivity is critical for success. Companies are constantly looking for ways to streamline their processes & maximize operational efficiency. An area that often poses inefficiencies and challenges is document management.

Manually managing paperwork and repetitive tasks cost businesses a major portion of their resources and frequently presents obstacles in the form of errors and execution delays.

Fortunately, digital transformation offers a game-changing solution to this problem. Intelligent document automation leverages the power of digitization and advanced analytics to help businesses structure and streamline their documentation process.

Technology-assisted digital onboarding and document management systems help organizations streamline verification and onboarding of clients, vendors, and partners and automate document creation, processing, execution, and management, helping improve efficiency and productivity across the board.

Understanding Intelligent Document Automation

Intelligent document automation uses contemporary technology to automate document-related activities, eliminating manual involvement and enhancing efficiency. It entails digitizing, extracting, processing, and analyzing data from a variety of documents using artificial intelligence, machine learning, natural language processing, and optical character recognition. Electronic signatures play a crucial role in this process by providing a secure and legally binding method to sign documents electronically.

Using document automation software helps businesses transform their traditional document management system and allows them to optimize their operations by automating repetitive tasks, accelerating processes, decreasing error rates, and of course, saving valuable time.

Adopting automation in document processing enables companies to streamline their document-centric operations while reducing the need for manual intervention. It promotes better collaboration between stakeholders, makes it easier for teams to access required information in real-time, and helps keep track of document versioning.

When businesses manage documents intelligently, it facilitates the automation of repetitive tasks, and employees can be free to focus on higher-value activities.

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Limitations of Paper-Based Document Management

Several issues may arise when companies manage documents manually. This not only slows down the execution of documents but also hinders the productivity and efficiency of every document-related operation. Some of the pressing challenges businesses encounter when they manage documents manually are:

  • Collaboration Bottlenecks: Traditional document management methods impede quick negotiations and collaborative editing. In addition, managing approval protocols becomes time-consuming and inefficient.
  • Inconsistencies and Errors: Manual document management is prone to human errors such as misfiling, mislabeling, and document loss. When working with physical documents, inconsistencies in version control and data entry can cause grave errors.
  • Inefficient Storage and Organization: Organizing documents manually is a big challenge when there is no established structure and consistency. This often leads to misplaced documents, a waste of valuable time, and perplexity when firms want to maintain a systematic approach to managing their documents.
  • Reduced Searchability: Manual document management not only complicates document searchability but also makes it harder to extract specific data that may be needed for reporting, processing, etc., which makes gaining insights from documents difficult.
  • Security and Compliance Risks: Paperwork can be lost, stolen, or damaged easily, which poses serious security risks for businesses. Companies often deal with sensitive internal reports and information from clients, and ensuring confidentiality becomes challenging without an intelligent document management solution that complies with data security regulations.
  • Lack of Version Control: When relying on manual processes, managing document versions becomes complicated for teams. It’s very challenging to ensure that everyone is working on the most recent version without a centralized mechanism to track changes. This often leads to discrepancies and potential errors.
  • Limited Access: When using manual methods, locating and obtaining specific documents might be time-consuming. Employees may be required to seek out physical files or navigate complex folder systems in addition to being physically present in the office to access files. This results in multiple delays and slow processing times.
  • Inadequate Scalability Features: Manual document management can’t be scaled as firms expand and document volumes increase. Larger document numbers necessitate more resources, time, and space, resulting in several inefficiencies.

Intelligent Document Automation- How Does It Streamline Workflows?

Intelligent document automation encompasses a range of processes and technologies that are designed to help businesses optimize their document-centric workflows.

  • Document Creation: This component involves the generation of documents based on the company’s standard templates and document requirements. This step also includes components like dynamic content entry, data extraction and insertion into templates, and formatting.
  • Collaboration and Negotiation: At this stage, the stakeholders of the document and all the parties involved in the project collaborate digitally and review the document to ensure the content is satisfactory. If any discrepancies are found, they can negotiate the document’s content online to reach a consensus faster.
  • Workflow Automation: Automating the document workflow ensures each document follows a prescribed set of steps and gets executed seamlessly. This stage involves processes like managing document versions, paying stipulated fees (ex: stamp duty), if any, and passing documents for final review and approval.
  • Document Execution, Storage, and Retrieval: The document is stored in a secure, centralized digital repository that features quick document search and access capabilities, version control, and access control. After the document has been processed for approval from all stakeholders, it gets executed and sent across to all parties for future reference and all-time availability.
  • Document Renewal: Several contract-based documents need to be renewed after the completion of a term. Intelligent document management automates the renewal of these documents to prevent missing deadlines.

What Should Businesses Look for in a Document Automation Solution?

Companies should closely assess several key factors when seeking an intelligent document automation solution to get optimal outcomes in their documentation workflows. To boost productivity, businesses must opt for document automation solutions that can make their tasks simpler and optimize them for speed and efficiency. To achieve this, they must choose software that includes these capabilities.

  • Reporting and Analytics: Document automation software with analytics and reporting capabilities provides insights into factors like document performance, processing time, and productivity metrics. This helps businesses identify areas for improvement and optimize their processes. Further, it enables them to make data-driven decisions.
  • Security and Compliance: Document automation solutions have to prioritize data security to safeguard sensitive information. They should choose a solution that is built to prioritize document confidentiality and integrity and includes features like access restrictions, data encryption, audit trails, and compliance with industry regulations, i.e., ISO, GDPR, HIPAA, etc.
  • Customization and Configuration: Each business has its specific requirements, and document automation systems should allow for easy customization and configuration to meet them. Companies should be able to configure user roles and permissions, define workflows, and modify document aesthetics to suit their branding.
  • Seamless Integration With Existing Systems: Document automation solutions must enable easy data interchange between external enterprise software applications to enhance the efficiency of document-related processes. This could include integration with applications such as content management systems (CMS), enterprise resource planning (ERP), etc.
  • Improved Accessibility and Searchability: Intelligent document automation systems should provide access via mobile applications or web-based interfaces. This helps users access, collaborate on, and work on documents from any location, increasing flexibility and productivity. Centralized digital document repositories with advanced search capabilities simplify document management and facilitate easy data extraction.
  • Scalability: Agility becomes increasingly vital when firms expand. To support this, they should prioritize an intelligent document automation solution that can accommodate growing document volumes and adapt to changing requirements without compromising performance and productivity.

Empowering Productivity: The Impact of Intelligent Document Automation

As the business landscape changes and becomes more complex and competitive, intelligent document automation is no longer an option but rather a necessity. Companies need to overcome document management challenges by shifting from manual document management toward automated and digitized solutions.

The incorporation of intelligent document automation is a game changer in terms of efficiency, accuracy, collaboration, and agility. It helps businesses boost productivity, collaboration, and data security while also ensuring compliance with document management policies and industry regulations.

Advanced document workflow automation technologies enable data-driven decision-making and continuous development by providing firms with actionable information through analytics and reporting. Organizations can discover bottlenecks, streamline processes, and drive better efficiency by leveraging these insights.

Switching to digital documents and automated processes enables businesses to also embrace flexible work arrangements and meet the demands of a digital workforce with mobile and remote access.

Ultimately, automating documentation processes helps organizations streamline workflows, improve productivity, and pave the way for growth and profitability.

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