CIO Playbook: 6 Keys to Digital Transformation Success

Digital Transformation Paperless

6 Core Keys for Digital Transformation Journey Success

I finally built out my Digital Transformation presentation deck, and recorded the video overview below.   This is an extension of my initial post:  BofA and Digital Transformation


The Benefits of Invisible Capture

Web Services for OCR and Capture

Using Web Services as a Hidden Automation Layer

The benefits of intelligent document capture are well documented, and its impact on efficiency can be a quick win for any business processing a decent volume of documents.  Capture 2.0 adds a new dimension of automation, and provides capture functionality to any application or system.   So now, the ERP, CRM or Document Management System can be capture enabled through its own interface, without the need to switch windows, open a new application or “send files” to a processing location.  This “hidden” automation layer requires no end-user expertise, and as far as they know, they are doing business as usual.  Below are some core benefits to leveraging Capture 2.0 Web Services:

Minimal Impact to OperationsCurrent process: the end-user uploads a received file through the CRM interface, and then enters some notes and metadata about the file: customer name, date of contract, salesperson, and region.  Capture 2.0 enabled process: the end-user uses the same upload process, but in the background, the hidden capture automation layer classifies the document, extracts all the data and enters it into the CRM automatically.  This is the power of document capture web services.  With no impact to current process or operations, you gain efficiency and reduce errors, driving speed of transactions, reduced response times and the costly fixing of erroneous data.

CRM Salesforce Capture Automation
Salesforce Upload Classification and Extraction

Low to No Training – because end users are using the applications they use every day, there is almost zero training required.  That’s the beauty of the hidden capture layer.  If deployed correctly, users just perform their process the same way, and manual data entry and steps are eliminated.  The lack of a training requirement minimizes any lost work days spent on costly training, and provides value starting day one.

Solve the Plague of Windows – more and more, IT and Business staff alike are looking to streamline and consolidate, and reduce the number of applications required to do business.   Creating that single interactive interface, or that single source of truth, is the end goal.  And a web services automation layer can provide functionality that would normally require the addition of an interactive app.

Maximum Efficiency – it is said that 50% of document intensive process labor is spent on 5% of your documents.  Why?  The cost of problems and fixing errors.  Automating any data extraction and document classification process, coupled with data validation techniques, and reduce errors to almost 0, and drive the maximum efficiency possible in your organization.

Just a brief note on some thoughts and trends I am seeing in the marketplace.  Thoughts?  If you want to see Capture 2.0 Web Services in action, take a peek at Ephesoft Transact Web Services API.



Email to SharePoint Online: Intelligent Routing

Email Attachments to a SharePoint Library

Email Attachments to a SharePoint Online Document Library

This is a demo request I had from a partner to see the ability of Ephesoft to pickup email attachments, separate and classify, and then extract data.  The final resting place is a SharePoint Online document library.   This is a seamless Email to SharePoint Online solution.

Resuscitate Your Capture: Bringing New Life to Document Automation

Document Capture Automation

Adding The Next Generation of Document Capture Automation

Over the past decade, the document capture industry has become quite stagnant and ripe for disruption.   The acquisition of just about every capture company by larger, behemoth organizations has created a stagnation in innovation and a lack of modernization.   IT executives are yearning for a refresh to their legacy capture solutions, and they expect standards of the modern tech world:

  • Service/Platform based architecture
  • Web/browser-based user interfaces
  • Web services APIs
  • Cloud-enabled technologies

With that said, many organizations have made massive investments in document capture technology, and a “rip and replace” strategy comes with a serious impact to business operations.   But there can be exponential benefits to a modernization of document automation and capture technologies.  This comes from key new developments from innovative capture startups:

  • Machine Learning – in the legacy capture world, long expensive services engagements are the norm, with deep custom development and configuration.  Isn’t it 2016?  Aren’t computers supposed to take that pain away with intelligence?  In steps machine learning.  The modern capture platform provides a core learning engine that understands your documents, their layouts and data.  As you use the system, it gets smarter, improving accuracy and reducing user intervention, with a true end goal of autonomous operations.
  • Capture Web Services – providing capture functionality to any application in the organization can be a huge boost to efficiency and productivity.  Want a customer document upload page to validate the uploaded documents are of the correct type?  Need check the date of a document, or that it has been signed?  Document capture services can give your development teams a tool set they have never had in the past.
  • Document Analytics and Analysis – taking a holistic view of the whole document capture process is essential to the modern capture platform.  Seeing the document as pure words will not further understanding, nor provide additional benefit.  With a true Analytics/Analysis frame of mind, every single characteristic of the document becomes important: font, font size, location, surrounding words and overall layout (for a deep look at the facets of document analytics, see my previous post: Document Analytics and Capture ).
  • Open Architecture – Having a capture platform that has been built from the ground up with openness and extensibility  in my mind is absolutely critical.  Adding this as an afterthought creates a clunky difficult environment for developers, and leads to workarounds and lack of desired functionality.

The great benefit here, is that without a “rip and replace” event, modern capture platforms can be added as a non-disruptive, transparent automation and efficiency layer.

Capture Epi-center Solution
Modern Capture Adding Efficiency and Automation At the Epicenter

By adding a centralized capture engine, you can glean the following benefits:

  • Any scanning device becomes an input device
  • BPM and Workflow systems can take advantage of capture with minimal dev (See an example here: Notes From the Field)
  • Services like fax and email can easily be designated as a source for capture
  • Legacy capture processes with bar code sheets and manual data entry can be automated
  • Mobile devices can now leverage mobile capture SDKs and the centralized automation engine
  • Legacy ECM systems now have a new automation dimension
  • Cloud-based enterprise services can be capture-enabled

So a tech refresh on the capture front becomes a viable initial project, and current capture components can be left in place.  In this case, Ephesoft becomes a new layer of automation and a catalyst for process improvement and efficiency.

This has been a consistent theme in our experience out in the market, with existing legacy capture customers and new prospects looking for a minimal impact refresh for their ailing and aged capture infrastructures.  Thoughts?  Comments?