Data Gone Wild

It’s obvious – we live in a modern, digital world with zettabytes of data swirling around us like a tornado. Terms like Big Data, Data Analytics, Dark Data, Data Scientists, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Structured Data and Unstructured Data are enough to make your head spin. The enormity of these concepts can make it challenging to decide how to manage your own data, or alternately, it might force you into action to start investigating best practices. 

If you work in an office or professional environment – whether or not your job is in the technology space – it’s likely that you work on a laptop, your job requires some type of data or content from various sources. You have probably heard all or some of this “data” terminology being used or have firsthand experience with it impacting your job – that’s because it is. With the growing rate of data being produced daily in the global  “datasphere,” organizations must undergo some type of data management and digital transformation initiatives. 

Enterprise businesses must deal with their data or be faced with slowed growth, restricted customer insight and increased compliance risk. With big data silos looming and multiplying, organizations cannot afford to let their data go unchecked, inaccessible, unprotected and unknown. In other words, it’s unwise to have dark data or, technically, unstructured data. 

The Data Struggle is Real, But Progressing

You may take solace in knowing that you are not alone in this data challenge. But that won’t be the case for very long. CIOs are dedicating more resources to automating processes and figuring out ways to unlock their data. IDC predicts that “by 2020, 30% of G2000 companies will have allocated capital budget equal to at least 10% of revenue to fuel their digital strategies.” 

In a recent report by GartnerDiving Digital Business Transformation for Industry Leadership,” they suggest that CIOs must support and lead their enterprise’s strategy by building a business model that capitalizes on digital business opportunities. A different Gartner report “Predicts 2019” anticipates that over 50% of midsize enterprises will have initiated specific initiatives to monetize their data by 2022. The value of data runs deep; it’s just a matter of getting to it.

Starting with GDPR mandates in 2018 and the upcoming 2020 California Consumer Privacy Act, or a recent US government push that has set deadlines for agencies to digitize their historic, permanent records before the end of 2022, has shown that digital transformation will soon be a requirement. Physical and digital content worlds must collide, and they must do it soon – either by legal demand or for their own health. 

Pushing Smart Content Capture to the Forefront

The first step to any digital transformation project starts with understanding what data you have so you can free it from the depths of that filing cabinet, that 700-page mortgage or 50-page insurance claim file PDF, emails or a duplicate file saved to an employee’s desktop. 

Organizing or classifying data with the ability to extract the important information you need can be a simple process with the right tools. Content capture tools that use AI-based or supervised machine learning algorithms are considered “smart” or “intelligent” capture solutions, which will automatically process your documents but will alert you if the machine recognizes a potential error or can’t recognize the text. These Smart Capture® solutions allow organizations to efficiently and accurately categorize and extract the right data so employees don’t have to do this type of mundane work. 

Once your unstructured data is unlocked and turned into metadata (now in a structured table format), it can be centrally stored and easily searched, accessed and used by decision-makers. Organizations using Smart Capture solutions positively benefit many departments, including, for example, faster processing and payments, reduced manual data entry labor costs, better customer service, smoother customer or employee onboarding and happier employees producing higher-value work. If a machine can do the tedious work, why not let it? Managing data will elevate most processes and help your organization perform better. 

Smart content capture must intersect with digital transformation objectives. Once you have this in place, it doesn’t end there. The data keeps flowing in as companies conduct their business. The next part of digital transformation is exporting your data into some type of repository, ERP, Content Services, RPA or other line of business systems. Supporting smart decisions with smart data is essential to success. As technology evolves, so much your digital transformation initiatives.

It’s time to buck up and pull the data reigns in tight. If you’d like to learn how Smart Capture can be the stepping stone to your digital transformation project, email us at or visit to request a short customized demo.