Changing perspectives: barriers to document automation – do they exist?

Implementing document automation can add significant value to your organisation from improved productivity and scalability to a reduction in service errors and significant cost savings.

However, before such processes are implemented there will inevitably be questions and uncertainty from stakeholders within the organisation. Don’t worry, whilst these may initially present themselves as barriers to change, often it’s simply a case of misconceptions or just not knowing where to start.

At Datagraphic, we’ve helped thousands of business professionals like you transform processes with document automation. In our experience, different teams within an organisation will have their own specific areas of interest and potential pinch points – for example, IT security requirements, compatibility with CRM, ERP and HCM legacy systems, or even the skills required to implement and process change.

Here, we run through some of the key questions we get asked, so you can navigate any assumed hurdles head on and begin your document automation project much sooner.  

  • Does change mean disruption?

The short answer is no! You may have previously experienced change in terms of your CRM, ERP and HCM systems which often involve high capital investment costs and lengthy implementations, which can disrupt routine service and operations.

The benefit of document automation is that it delivers big value with minimal impact to your day-to-day business activities. There’s no lengthy change project or large capital investment required. The document automation solutions you use should be developed and built with easy integration and implementation in mind – we’re talking weeks not years – enabling you to achieve early ROI.

  • Will document automation mean new infrastructure and high capital costs?

Don’t think replacement but resuscitation. Introducing document automation shouldn’t involve overhauling or replacing your legacy systems but instead seamlessly integrating with your current infrastructure.

Many legacy systems  use out-dated logic, have hard-coded, unwieldy structures restrict document output options. Choosing the right document automation provider can overcome these challenges by working with your legacy systems to bring your data to life so you can deliver  data rich and responsive documents through multi-channel distribution quickly, easily and securely.

  • It’s not just the implementation costs, what about individual user costs?

Costs savings shouldn’t be limited to implementation. You shouldn’t be penalised for growth in your workforce or the increase in productivity which document automation will bring. Choose a solution that has no licence fees, minimum volume or monthly spend so you can be assured you are consistently achieving on-going cost savings.

Across sectors we are witnessing increasingly flexible workforces bringing a mixture of permanent, temporary, short term employees. You may be operating multiple sites or embracing remote working. We understand you need a system which can flex and adapt and which doesn’t charge per user.

  • How do we ensure our information is secure?

Data rich communications make the best use of the information within your business. Maintaining the integrity and security of that sensitive and personal data is critical. Your automation solution should demonstrate strict adherence to data protection regulations. Choose a partner who understands that security and compliance is a culture and not just a process.

  • Will our customers and employees be forced to go digital?

Multi-channel communication is a key benefit of document automation however; don’t be misled into assuming that everyone embraces digital communications. The Ofcom Online Nation report highlights that this year (2019) 13% of adults do not use the internet. Even for those that do adopt online communications there is can be a preference for print.

Which is why you need a platform which is digital first, but not digitally exclusive. Print and digital should co-exist and both can benefit from the streamlined, time saving and data rich capabilities of document automation.

You also need to meet the needs of your customers, employees and suppliers who require different formats of print  such as braille and large font.

  • What happens if we grow or need to increase document volumes?

Starting small but thinking big. While you may start your documentation journey in one area of your business, scalability should be built in and designed to evolve to provide more functionality and ROI. That, coupled with no licence fees or minimum use restrictions, means you will be able to develop and continue to extract value across the business with minimal costs.

Introducing innovation and change doesn’t have to be a bumpy ride. Anticipating the questions, demonstrating the solutions and working in partnership with specialists with knowledge and experience will mean you can reassure stakeholders and ensure your document automation journey is smooth and successful.

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