Pervasive Capture: The New Age of Efficiency

Incremental Automation for the Masses

The document capture industry has gone through a number of transformations over the years, typically tied to technology innovation and market demand. The new frontier we are experiencing, which I refer to as Pervasive Capture, is a challenging one for legacy vendors with dated technology that is bound to the server and desktop. Let’s explore the evolution of document capture and how we now arrive at the age of Pervasive Capture.

Centralized Capture

When capture first made its debut, the focus was purely digitization. You could say this was the Stone Age of Digital Transformation. Organizations centralized scanning rooms with extremely expensive hardware and software to digitize their paper documents. Documents from remote locations were transferred via mail or truck and fed into high-speed scanners. They were processed in large batches and ended up in a digital records repository. Once again, licenses to access digitized documents were extremely expensive and access was limited to a select set of users in the organization.

Decentralized Capture

As hardware and software costs dropped, organizations could justify the cost of numerous “scanning centers” at branches and decentralized locations. Mail and trucking costs were eliminated, while paper was still the focus, with large document batches processed on location.  This led to less lag time in processing, and a faster return on investment and improved access to newly created digital documents.

Distributed Capture

The rise of the scanning copier and low-cost desktop scanners in the office created a market for distributing the efficiencies of capture. Pushing capture technology to the front lines created almost instant access to digital documents, as workers could process small batches, and even single documents. It is during this time that capture software began to expand its reach into digital documents as well. Digital fax, email attachments and other “born digital” documents were now a target of automation as well.

Pervasive Capture

Here we are in 2018, the age of Pervasive Capture. In this world of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and Intelligent Process Automation (IPA), Smart Capture® is now available via Web Services APIs to create document automation in any process and at any scale.  Applications can now call a document intelligence service to immediately gain information mid-process, creating micro-efficiencies at the individual document level. (See an example here: OCR and Data Extraction with Nintex)

So, what does this mean? Organizations can now examine their existing workflows and robotic processes and use that data to look for incremental automation opportunities. For example, a financial services company can implement an onboarding workflow that allows a prospect customer to upload identification and the most recent W2. The workflow uses Smart Capture® to classify the uploaded document types and extract pertinent data. The ID’s state of issue and the expiration data can be verified to ensure it is a current ID. The W2 year can be extracted and confirmed to be last year’s earnings. The whole process removes humans from the loop and prevents errors from flowing downstream, creating micro-efficiencies at the document level, and allowing additional, incremental automation at the process level. Using this process and deploying this strategy enterprise-wide and the sum of the added efficiencies can be massive.  

What’s the opportunity for incremental automation in your organization’s processes? Join us for a webinar to learn more:

Register to join on September 19 at 8 AM PDT | 11 AM EDT

Register to join on September 19 at 5 PM PDT | 10 AM AEST (Sept 20)


Boxworks Primer: Machine Learning and Analytics with Ephesoft

Automating Box with Ephesoft

As we prepare for our next BoxWorks event, I wanted to point out the advantages and key use cases for Ephesoft Technology when coupled with Box. There are 3 essential questions you need to ask yourself when working with Box at a strategic level:

  1. How do I add content and associated metadata with the least amount of effort?
  2. How can I find the content I need quickly and easily?
  3. How do I glean value from the dark data that lies within my repository?

In the following sections, I will outline how Ephesoft addresses each of these key questions, and can provide enormous value to any Box repository.

Using Intelligent Capture to Add Content to Box

At its most basic level, Ephesoft Transact is an onramp for adding documents to Box. You can ingest from the following sources:

  • Scanners (Browser-based scanning)
  • MFPs/Copiers
  • Network Folders
  • Email (Body and Attachments)
  • Mobile (Through our SDK and App)
  • Legacy ECM systems (CMIS import)
  • Custom code (RESTful Web Service)

Import from a variety of sources is just the first step. Once imported, documents pass through our supervised machine learning engine and are classified, followed by the application of your data extraction rules. This extracted data is mapped to Box metadata fields/attributes. Along with our application, macro- and microservices are also available for a broad variety of functions, which can be accessed through code in Box or other applications.

Document Metadata in Box

Enhancing Search with OCR and Metadata

Ephesoft Transact can provide Optical Character Recognition (OCR) for Box along with providing the converted text in a number of ways:

  • All documents from an Ephesoft process are full text, searchable PDFs.
  • Extracted metadata to Box metadata mapping

Enhancing Box Search Capabilities with Searchable PDFs

Adding searchable attributes, along with providing a searchable PDF from image, allows broad flexibility in search, and insures you can find exactly what you need. To go a little deeper, Ephesoft has extensive data extraction features that can service a number of unique use cases. Here are some examples:

  • Line item extraction for AP Invoice processing
  • Paragraph extraction for contracts processing
  • Cross section extraction for financial statements
  • Signature detection for any signed document

This extraction capability allows Ephesoft to be leveraged beyond just the repository, and it can be a solution for complex data extraction needs.

Unstructured to Structured: Harvesting Data from Large Volumes of Documents

It is estimated that over 80% of the data in an organization is unstructured, and this inaccessible data can create big problems for any size business. It is estimated that poor data and lack of structure can cost a business 20-30% of their operating revenue (FATHOM – “Big Data” Facts and Statistics That Will Shock You). Once Ephesoft transforms your unstructured data, users can now uncover the data to help decision-makers worldwide. Having searchable data at your fingertips can allow entities to:

  • GDPR Discovery
  • Anti-money Laundering and Fraud Detection
  • Know Your Customer (KYC) Analysis
  • Contract Analysis
  • Capitalize on rebates and supplier discounts
  • Accurate, fast reporting

In summary, Ephesoft’s platform reduces labor and manual data entry, improves efficiency and productivity, and transforms your unstructured data. When integrated into Box, the sky is the limit when you use our platform to enhance your document workflows and analyze your content.

Ephesoft is an exhibitor at BoxWorks this week. Stop by Kiosk B8 for more information and an overview of our solutions.