Businesses across the board have evolved since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. In many cases, cramped cubicles, overstuffed file cabinets, and the company water cooler have been replaced by home offices within mere steps of the fridge or some other informal setting, such as a local coffee shop served by a favorite barista. The technology boom of the past decade accelerated to a whole new level when businesses were suddenly sent home.
As 2022 reveals a professional world that is more aware of the benefits of remote access to work, more supply chain professionals are choosing to invest in cloud-based technology and automation. One such technology taking the industry further than before is intelligent document automation. Here are six tips to consider when choosing this tech.
1. Benchmark Current Operations to Know Your Needs
Although automated document processing platforms often advertise cookie-cutter packages, it’s important for freight companies to first examine their own needs before trying to fit in the offerings of a platform. Creating a standard for current operations better equips decision-makers to choose a data-driven processing option that doesn’t limit them to their platform’s restraints.
2. Evaluate System Vendor Features
When buying RPA for supply chain needs, freight forwarders should consider the intelligent document automation abilities it holds. Is it able to properly classify documents? Are there data extraction limitations? If data release is equally automated, what is the confidence level that the system uses to mark exceptions? These are important not only for daily business functions but also for logistics analytics.
3. Consider the User-Friendliness of the System.
In the face of a supply chain talent shortage, more companies are turning to automation to maximize the availability of team members. However, automated document processing platforms are only helpful if they are usable. If team members are having to spend months launching RPA into their business workflow, that leaves drastically less time to focus on time-sensitive needs.
4. Ensure the System Is Compatible With Your Tech Stack
As decision-makers narrow down platform options for intelligent document automation, they not only need to consider their in-house tech stack but the tech stacks of customers as well. Does this document processing platform host electronic data interchange (EDI)? Does it contain an application programming interface (API) that mediates between customer applications? An effective RPA will answer yes.
5. Choose a Software That Offers Clear ROI Like RPA
In their 16 case studies of RPA incorporation, McKinsey & Company reported that most RPA uses generated “a return on investment that varies between 30% and as much as 200% in the first year.” With multiple software options available, it’s important to scutinize who clearly advertises the ROI of robotic process automation for their customers and which ones decline to share that data.
6. Ensure the Software Digitizes/Automates Generation, Sharing, and Notifications
When deliberating between systems, decision-makers should be sure to read the fine print. Is this system simply a well-advertised OCR, or can it actually digitize supply chain documents and utilize the data to generate new ones? A high-quality RPA software can even provide alerts when these documents are shared, signed, and opened.
Choose a Software That Streamlines Document Processing – Choose RPA Labs
Although the supply chain has typically been mired with archaic workflows, technology’s tide can no longer hold back. Freight forwarders and shippers can value to their company by investing in an automated document processing platform that not only fits their needs today but can grow with them. Intelligent document automation should be a user-friendly, virtual partner that integrates with your tech stack to promote organization, accuracy, and communication during all stages of document processing. To see how RPA Labs can fit this bill, schedule your demo today.