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Intelligent Capture will transform how service industry operates

Sandy Kemsley

February 15, 2018

Intelligent Capture will transform how service industry operates | ABBYY Blog Post

Data capture from paper or electronic documents is an essential step for many business processes, and often is the initiator for customer-facing business processes. Capture has traditionally required human effort – data entry workers transcribing Information from paper documents, or copying and pasting text from electronic documents – to expose information for downstream processing.

Why “Intelligent Capture” is a game-changer

Intelligent capture replaces manual capture with fully-automated conversion of documents to business-ready data, whether the document originated as a paper document or in machine-readable electronic form. Intelligent capture technologies include:

  • Recognition of printed text, handwriting and Barcodes from scanned paper documents
  • Classification to identify the type of document, based on its content and format
  • Text analytics to extract specific data elements from the document required for the business process

Intelligent Capture and Digital Transformation

Digital transformation is a fundamental shift of business models and activities onto digital platforms, and requires rethinking and retooling an organization’s end-to-end business processes. Not just impacting internal workers, digital transformation can only occur through significant enablement of customer channels. This requires comprehensive self-service capabilities, where customers create and complete transactions without intervention from workers inside the organization.

Business process management (BPM) technologies have focused on streamlining and automating internal processes, so that once data is captured from inbound documents, many transactions can be fully automated. Intelligent capture creates a link between external customers and the internal automated processes, allowing for fully-automated self-service business models that could not previously exist. Using intelligent capture, a document submitted by a customer can be automatically recognized, classified, stored and used to trigger a process. This is a fundamental shift in how customers can choose to interact with organizations through digitally transformed channels, enabled by intelligent capture.

Here are some of the key benefits that intelligent capture brings to digital transformation projects:

  • Customers are more engaged with the company and its products through self-service
  • Many transactions are fully automated and provide instantaneous results, which cuts internal costs while delighting customers
  • Knowledge workers can focus on problem resolution instead of processing routine transactions
  • Customers can be offered additional goods and services during their transaction based on content analytics

Application of Intelligent Capture in the service industry

There are many possible uses for intelligent capture in service industries:

  • Invoice processing. Although invoices are a basic tool for every business, each company may have its own format. Intelligent capture can determine the layout of the invoice, and extract key fields such as supplier number, PO number, due date, line item details and totals.
  • Contract negotiation and management, where different versions of contracts, must be carefully reviewed and compared to minimize legal and financial risk. Intelligent capture can automatically identify document sections, and the terms and conditions within that section, to compare with standard clauses.
  • Employee onboarding. When a new employee starts with a company, they may have to submit many documents, such as identity and tax forms. Intelligent capture allows them to photograph or submit these using their mobile device, then automatically extract the information and upload it to the HR system.

Points to consider before implementation

Intelligent capture solutions employ a suite of technologies, depending on the documents and data to be captured: recognition, classification, text analytics, and even photo recognition. It’s essential that the solution that you select has been tested on the type of documents that you will be capturing to ensure that documents are properly classified, and the content extracted for use in the downstream business processes. If your customers will be capturing their documents directly, the solution needs to support mobile device cameras and uploading from their own PCs, which may require a cloud solution to support secure scanning and upload.

However, you also need to ensure that the downstream business processes are as automated as possible, using technologies such as business process management and decision management. Once these business processes receive the data extracted by intelligent capture, they can execute routine transactions with a minimum of human intervention.

Digital Transformation Intelligent Document Processing (IDP) Accounts Payable Automation Finance & Accounting Financial Services Insurance Legal
Sandy Kemsley

Sandy Kemsley

Process Automation Industry Analyst at Column 2

Sandy is an independent analyst and systems architect, specializing in digital process automation (DPA), business process management (BPM), the social enterprise, enterprise architecture and business intelligence. In addition to her technical background, she has worked on the business operations end of projects, and is often involved from business requirements and analysis through technology design and deployment.

During her career of more than 20 years, she has started and run successful product and service companies, including a desktop workflow and document management product company from 1988-90, and a 40-person services firm specializing in BPM and e-commerce from 1990-2000. During 2000-2001, she worked for FileNet (now IBM) as Director of eBusiness Evangelism during the launch of their eProcess BPM product, and I was a featured speaker on BPM and its impact on business at conferences and customer sites in 14 countries during that time.

Since 2001, she has returned to private consulting practice as a BPM/DPA architect, performing engagements for financial services and insurance organizations across North America, and as an analyst working with BPM/DPA vendors. In addition to writing her blog, she often speaks at conferences about BPM/DPA and digital transformation, and is a contributing author to books on social BPM and adaptive case management. Sandy is the recipient of the 2016 Marvin L. Manheim award for significant contributions in the field of workflow, and the 2019 winner of the Workflow Management Coalition’s award for Outstanding Business Transformation Consultant.

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