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5 Things I Learned from Document Automation Events

May 12 · 2 min read

I will be attending the Legito PowerUp conference in Prague on Friday 17th June. The event is about inspiration, interaction and action – which brings me to my topic today: the things I’ve learned from interactions with other document automation folk over the years.

Chances are there aren’t many people in your organisation with a focus on automation of document-centric business processes. It can seem like a lonely quest. It need not feel like that – it’s been my experience that the vendors and customers in the document automation world like to share. The biggest obstacle to the uptake of automation isn’t our competitor vendors – it’s the latent market of organisations that won’t do anything to improve. We all benefit from sharing stories and experiences to showcase the useful and impactful work being done.

#1 Innovations in automation with documents isn’t new and it’s not a fad.

Serious solutions have been around since the 1980s, and lots of clever folk have dedicated a lot of effort to business-critical applications. When I saw who else was working in this area, I realised it would be a career-long adventure. I was motivated to learn more and experiment.

#2 Getting work done with documents is an enterprise-wise problem.

My first project was about automating the production of outsourcing contracts. However, my problem statement wasn’t fundamentally different from challenges in our other business teams with no interest in contracts. Meeting people working in other areas brought a focus on the core requirements we all had in common.

#3 Quick projects and quick wins are achievable by just one person.

I had a specific project, and I didn’t have the budget or the inclination to see it become a big ‘IT project’. I was pleasantly surprised to find that one motivated person can deliver tangible results. I found that document automation teams were small but thriving even in big organisations. Meeting peers in other organisations gave me the confidence to launch my first project.

#4 Vendors want success stories and they will go the extra mile to help you succeed.

Organisations of any size know they need accounts software, office software and usually a collection of similar ‘must have’ tools. Microsoft doesn’t need to persuade you that the ability to create spreadsheets or run a group of PCs is a necessary business requirement. Document automation isn’t like that, yet. Many organisations can function with inefficient business processes and weak documents precisely because they are no worse than the others. For those of us with good solutions in the field of document automation and document lifecycle management, we want to showcase customer success. Attending events is a good chance to meet others who want to help you succeed.

#5 Everyone has a tip to share for a problem you probably have.

Now that we all use Microsoft Word, almost everyone in the room at a conference will have an annoying puzzle they would like to fix. Attending document automation events directed me to sanity-restoring ways to tame Word. My day job is being a lawyer, but I still get client thanks for fixing formatting glitches in tables, or curing unruly page breaks. I got most of the clever tips from contacts at events. Of course, it was also a chance to find better ways of using automation tools.

Join us on 17th June – leave refreshed with ideas and tips you can use immediately. Many of us have used multiple solutions and worked in diverse teams.

5 Things I Learned from Document Automation Events

May 12 · 2 min read

I will be attending the Legito PowerUp conference in Prague on Friday 17th June. The event is about inspiration, interaction and action – which brings me to my topic today: the things I’ve learned from interactions with other document automation folk over the years.

Chances are there aren’t many people in your organisation with a focus on automation of document-centric business processes. It can seem like a lonely quest. It need not feel like that – it’s been my experience that the vendors and customers in the document automation world like to share. The biggest obstacle to the uptake of automation isn’t our competitor vendors – it’s the latent market of organisations that won’t do anything to improve. We all benefit from sharing stories and experiences to showcase the useful and impactful work being done.

#1 Innovations in automation with documents isn’t new and it’s not a fad.

Serious solutions have been around since the 1980s, and lots of clever folk have dedicated a lot of effort to business-critical applications. When I saw who else was working in this area, I realised it would be a career-long adventure. I was motivated to learn more and experiment.

 

#2 Getting work done with documents is an enterprise-wise problem.

My first project was about automating the production of outsourcing contracts. However, my problem statement wasn’t fundamentally different from challenges in our other business teams with no interest in contracts. Meeting people working in other areas brought a focus on the core requirements we all had in common.

 

#3 Quick projects and quick wins are achievable by just one person.

I had a specific project, and I didn’t have the budget or the inclination to see it become a big ‘IT project’. I was pleasantly surprised to find that one motivated person can deliver tangible results. I found that document automation teams were small but thriving even in big organisations. Meeting peers in other organisations gave me the confidence to launch my first project.

 

#4 Vendors want success stories and they will go the extra mile to help you succeed.

Organisations of any size know they need accounts software, office software and usually a collection of similar ‘must have’ tools. Microsoft doesn’t need to persuade you that the ability to create spreadsheets or run a group of PCs is a necessary business requirement. Document automation isn’t like that, yet. Many organisations can function with inefficient business processes and weak documents precisely because they are no worse than the others. For those of us with good solutions in the field of document automation and document lifecycle management, we want to showcase customer success. Attending events is a good chance to meet others who want to help you succeed.

 

#5 Everyone has a tip to share for a problem you probably have.

Now that we all use Microsoft Word, almost everyone in the room at a conference will have an annoying puzzle they would like to fix. Attending document automation events directed me to sanity-restoring ways to tame Word. My day job is being a lawyer, but I still get client thanks for fixing formatting glitches in tables, or curing unruly page breaks. I got most of the clever tips from contacts at events. Of course, it was also a chance to find better ways of using automation tools.

Join us on 17th June – leave refreshed with ideas and tips you can use immediately. Many of us have used multiple solutions and worked in diverse teams.

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