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From Documents To Digital Data: How To Automate Your Financial Office

The concept behind the adding machine and later the calculator was that they were more accurate and efficient than calculating sums by hand with a pencil and paper. This is the idea behind automation, but not every office uses it to its fullest potential. In financial offices all across the country, you can still find employees doing things the old-fashioned way with paper documents. This is to their disadvantage because it’s estimated that using paper forms costs businesses roughly $120 billion every year.

In addition to the costs of paper, ink and the equipment necessary to make hard copies, there are additional, hidden costs. Waiting for documents to be reviewed and signed by hand and then delivered back to the originator eats up time that could be spent on more-important tasks. The same can be said of digging around in file cabinets searching for records. Also, having sensitive information collected where anyone can see it creates some significant concerns about data security.

How Automation Can Streamline Your Financial Operations

Automating document management through digitization can alleviate these issues and create a streamlined financial office where everything operates as efficiently as possible. When files and documents are stored in the digital realm, employees can find what they’re looking for with greater ease and speed. Emailing documents between personnel for review and approval takes seconds, much less time than shuffling paperwork from desk to desk. Encryption and other security measures also make it much less likely that sensitive data will find its way into the wrong hands.

For instance, scheduling invoices can be a tedious, laborious process when done by hand. However, an automated recurring invoicing module as part of a software package can ensure regular vendors and customers always receive their invoices without the need for human intervention. They also enable one-time invoices to be created and issued from a mobile device without needing a bookkeeper sign off on them.

Documentation filled out by hand can be entered into your system almost instantly thanks to advanced optical character recognition powered by machine-learning AI. Just scan the document and all the pertinent information will be captured and filed automatically.  

These are just two examples of how automation can make a big difference in how well your financial office operates. When you partner with an experienced and capable solutions provider, the benefits can be substantial. To learn more about what automating your paperwork can do for you, see the accompanying resource.

Infographic created by Donnelley Financial Solutions, a regulatory compliance software company

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