Government facilities exist to help countries and cities function as intended. Unfortunately, too many agencies around the globe are stuck in the past, opting to use outdated manual processes in all facets of their work. One of those antiquated processes includes data extraction and storage.

There’s a better way to gather and send data for government agencies: intelligent document processing (IDP). Here’s what you need to know about IDP and how it can be so effective for automation within government organizations.

What is Intelligent Document Processing (IDP) in Government?

Before we get into the industry specifics, let’s first go over IDP as a whole. Intelligent document processing is a software solution that combines optical scanning technology with artificial intelligence to process documents and data. 

Essentially, IDP will:

  • Pull information directly from digital and physical documents.
  • Organize or classify that information into document types.
  • Export it into another application or data repository so it can be referenced or analyzed at any time. 

This can lead to improved efficiency, accuracy and productivity for data extraction and delivery.

Application to Government Roles

So how does intelligent document processing apply to government agencies? Well, federal and state governments handle a lot of information. With over 2.2 million federal government employees in the United States and millions more state and local government employees, that amount of information borders on insurmountable. If your agency plans on processing all of that data manually, you’re in for long nights and a lot of data entry errors.

That’s where IDP comes in—and this process has already helped forward-thinking government agencies jumpstart their digital transformation. With IDP, every branch and level of government—whether city councils, housing authorities or revenue services—can automate their processes.

Top 5 IDP Use Cases in Government 

While there are hundreds of different ways IDP can be implemented into government agency processes, let’s focus on the five that might just provide the greatest improvements for the public sector.

1. Data Compliance, Privacy and Security

Government employees have access to highly sensitive information. To modernize and secure government documents, the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) have set forth document management requirements (M-19-21). 

Those requirements include the following:

  1. All federal records must be created, retained and managed in a digital format and include appropriate metadata.
  2. Record keeping must be consistent with records management laws and regulations, with all analog records transferred to the Federal Records Center or a commercial storage facility.

These requirements must be met by the end of 2022 for all United States government agencies. If you aren’t currently compliant, there is no time to waste.

IDP can help this transition run smoothly. Most obviously, IDP streamlines the digitization of physical records by using document capture.

The software also ensures the information is accurate and automatically redacts any sensitive information that shouldn’t be released to the public. Since every digital document will live in a secure database, there is a reduced risk that sensitive information will be leaked and published without the agency’s consent.

2. Records Digitization and Archiving

With non-digital records, the analog copies are likely sitting in a filing cabinet, a box or someone’s desk. This way of record-keeping is obsolete—it isn’t searchable or indexable, so trying to find a specific dataset or information is next to impossible.

Fortunately, IDP’s primary function is to digitize records in an indexable manner. After scanning a document, whether analog or digital, the IDP extracts, classifies and exports the structured data.

This automation will help make your services more accessible to your constituents. Not to mention, you won’t have to spend so much money renting physical storage spaces.

3. Handprint Recognition and Extraction

Handprint varies greatly, which can make digitization a serious issue. It is, however, a necessary evil—many documents and processes require physical signatures. That requirement isn’t going away anytime soon.

Aside from the handwriting itself, plenty of other issues can contribute to difficulty in handprint analysis, including:

  • Poor scan quality
  • Variations of the same document
  • Fax conversions
  • Misspellings

For many years, technology has not been able to produce accurate interpretations of handprint. Fortunately, Ephesoft’s IDP solution can recognize and extract handprint of any type with incredible accuracy, even with minimal human intervention. If our solution does encounter difficult-to-read handprinting, it will alert your team to validate the text.

4. Background Checks, Adjudication and Identity Verification

Many government agencies need to collect the personal information of citizens for a variety of use cases. This information may come from documents like:

  • Driver’s licenses
  • Passports
  • Visas
  • Healthcare cards
  • Tax forms
  • Employee documents

In many cases, a government official must take that document and input the information manually. This process is slow and slashes efficiency in a variety of settings, including employee onboarding and public sector applications.

A simple remedy to this bottleneck is intelligent document processing. IDP accelerates the hyperautomation of personal data collection and ensures the information scanned is highly accurate. This process also stores the personal information so your employees can quickly bring up data for returning users and verify their identity.

5. Digital Mailroom Automation

Government employees are bombarded with endless letters and emails. Without a system to track all incoming and outgoing correspondence, a lot of information risks getting lost. 

By using Ephesoft’s intelligent document capture solutions, you can scan every physical and digital document the moment it enters your system and send the information to those who need it. This drastically reduces the risk of mail getting lost in an inbox or going unnoticed.

How to Get Started with Automation

It’s easy—intelligent document processing is the best way to digitize your government agency’s records and become compliant with the impending data compliance protocols. But how can you start to automate your data extraction and storage process? Begin your digital transformation journey with intelligent document processing.

Learn more in an eBook that goes into much more detail about how IDP can transform your government processes. Download Top 5 Use Cases for Intelligent Document Processing in Government, and get all the information you need to accelerate processes, reduce errors, automate tedious processes and ensure compliance for years to come.

Ephesoft’s IDP technology will help you accelerate your records digitization efforts and bring your agency into the modern era. And, we’re FedRAMP moderate compliant and AFNIC certified. Contact us today for more information.