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Say Goodbye to Paper; Digitize Your Data

How Does Document Automation Work?

What is Document Automation?

It’s time to save money on paper, save time and space from all those boxes and binders, and ensure you have all the correct documents and data at your fingertips when you need it.

A document automation software tool can be applied across various industries to a wide range of documents, including contracts and agreements, reports and proposals, invoices and purchase orders, tax forms and returns, marketing and sales collateral, customer service documents and so on. 

Document automation can also work hand-in-hand with other automation technologies such as intelligent automation (IA), which combines robotic process automation (RPA), artificial intelligence (AI) and business process management (BPM) to automate business processes end-to-end.

Intelligent character recognition (ICR or iOCR) extracts handwritten text from images, while handwriting optical character recognition (OCR) can extract handwritten text from paper, scans and other low-quality digital documents.

What Is Document Automation?

Document automation uses the latest machine learning (ML) technology to automatically digitize, classify and extract information from paper documents. 

These documents can be in handwritten form or in a variety of other structured formats. Depending on the document automation software you choose, these formats could include:

  • Handwritten pages
  • Word-processing documents
  • Spreadsheets
  • Presentations
  • Plain text files
  • HTML
  • Webpages
  • Emails
  • Rich text format
  • Database records
  • PDFs
  • Low-quality scans
  • Faxes
  • Images

By automating this data extraction, you’re removing the need for tedious data entry, which is prone to human errors. Automation frees people from time-consuming tasks, resulting in better efficiency and error-free results. This software can work across various functions and complexities and includes logic-based systems for assembling new documents. 

How does document automation work?

Document automation streamlines and simplifies how you manage documents. This is done by capturing input data, choosing an output format, checking for irregularities and generating that data into the desired format.

Steps within document automation can include the process of creating a template, data integration, data field mapping, establishing rules and logic, triggering events, setting conditional logic and the optional but highly important reviewing and approval process.

What is document processing automation?

Document processing automation is another name for document automation. Most document automation tools tend to include features such as:

  • Template creation
  • Data integration
  • Document assembly
  • Workflow automation
  • Conditional logic
  • Digital signatures
  • Version control
  • Document storage and retrieval
  • Customization
  • Analytics and reporting

What’s the difference between IDP and document automation?

Document automation and intelligent document processing (IDP) share a lot of similarities. IDP employs AI as well as handwriting OCR and natural language processing (NLP), and can work on structured, unstructured and semi-structured documents.

How Do You Automate Document Processing?

Select the right document automation platform or tool that aligns with your business needs, then create standardized document templates. From there, you can integrate the tool with your data sources (i.e., databases, spreadsheets or CRM systems).

The steps within automated document processing may vary depending on which platform or software you choose. SS&C | Blue Prism® Document Automation turns handwritten documents into decision-ready information immediately. It allows you to extract data accurately, quickly and easily, reducing your manual efforts by up to 80%. 

“Document Automation’s new AI-powered READ engine makes the decision to implement automation a no-brainer by relieving enterprises of the burden of manual workflows. Intelligent automation is now within everyone’s grasp.” – Accenture.

How do you automate document processing

What should you look for in a document automation solution?

Find a document automation solution that allows you to create reusable templates. This helps you scale your automation faster. Also, look for a platform or tool that will help you define workflows and guide you through the document creation process. This will reduce the time spent completing these burdensome tasks.

Solutions should be maintainable and customizable so you can fit them with your organization’s brand standards and compliance policies. Look for a solution that integrates well with your system so you can get started right away.

What Are the Benefits of Document Automation?

With document automation, you can accurately automate document processing tasks across structured and semi-structured documents in a fraction of the time and free your people from tedious work.

Comprehensive solution

Extracts handwriting and low-quality machine print from paper, images and PDFs and turns it into automation-ready data.   

Unbeatable accuracy 

Accepts end-customer information in any form and extracts data with 98%+ field-level accuracy, outperforming what an individual can achieve.

Automation-ready data 

Data is intelligently extracted, prioritized, contextualized and routed to fit directly into your current business processes.   

Integrate and scale 

Integrates with existing automation tools and scales to meet the throughput demands of the largest and most complex automated workflows. 

What are the benefits of document automation

What Is an Example or Use Case for Document Automation?

Because document automation has so many uses, it can be applied to almost any industry. That includes a variety of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and corporations, law firms, HR departments, sales and marketing teams, finance and accounting, government and public sector organizations, healthcare institutions, educational institutions, real estate agencies, manufacturing and supply chains, customer support teams, nonprofit organizations, research and academia, etc.

Document automation tools are easy to use, meaning almost anyone in your business can apply automation to their documents. Now, let’s look at some industry examples.  

Legal services

Automate law firms’ document assembly, including briefs, client intake forms, pleadings and discovery documents. Document automation streamlines how long it takes users to create legal documents and allows them to easily manage document version control and e-filing.   

Financial services 

Digitize documents such as invoices, purchase orders and financial reports, and streamline expense reporting and reimbursement processes.   

Human resources 

Document automation can read incoming HR-based documents, including offer letters, employment contracts and onboarding documents, and keep employee records and compliance documentation organized and up to date.   


Automatically generate patient intake forms, medical records and insurance claims. You can also automate insurance claims processes to reduce manual data entry. 


Create documents for insurance policies, claims forms, underwriting documents, quotes and policy summaries

Customer support services 

Develop service contracts and agreements for customer engagements and automatically create and track support tickets.  

Government and public sector 

Automate the application and issuance of permits and licenses. Document Automation allows you to generate tax forms, filings and reports for individuals or businesses, and streamline public records processing. 

Your Document Automation Summary

Most document automation software offers a comprehensive solution for digitizing, classifying and extracting information from a wide range of documents across various industries. With machine learning, it eliminates the need for manual data entry, reduces errors and improves efficiency.

Whether it’s handwritten notes, Word documents, PDFs or even emails, this tech can streamline document management – from data capture to final output.

The benefits of implementing document automation are better accuracy, scalability and integration with existing systems. Plus, organizations can significantly reduce manual efforts, allowing employees to focus on more critical tasks.

Document automation is versatile and can be applied to various sectors and departmental needs. By adopting document automation, you can ensure your organization has the correct data readily available, saving you time and resources.

To learn more about our Document Automation solution, contact an SS&C Blue Prism expert.