Tag Archives: secure document management

process automation

What is process automation?

In this post I wanted to get to the heart of document management. Process automation

I talk about the benefits of paper, print and digital and, how it impacts our lives.

We continue to generate so much information daily and organisations are  deluged with information from invoices, letters, reminders and so forth with all this information how does a company manage to stay above the paper flow?

That is where process automation comes in.

What is process automation?

It is the digitising of any manual process that collects and centralises information within an organisation.

For example an electronic filing system that reduces or replaces administrative tasks to a solution that can streamline whole departments.

Managing the lifecycle of documents and data within a business is the cornerstone to better control, greater visibility, security and efficiency.

process automationProcess automation can be broken down into four key areas each of which can be managed and improved independently of each other or improved as a whole.

Data capture – capturing important data is key to any business process. Manual capture or data entry can be time consuming and inaccurate. Automating the capturing of data is quick, efficient and error free. It involves taking the information and scanning documents, collecting key bits of information and then digitising the information.

Document management – this is the heart of process automation.  Information and documents are stored in an electronic filing cabinet whereby it can be controlled in a secure and central location.

It is useful for freeing up physical space by storing electronic copies of historical documents and archiving for documents that have completed their life cycle.

Document management enables instant retrieval with indexed rich process automationsearch ability, administrator based access for added document security, traceability for audit control, records management for lifecycle control and integration into other business systems as a central source of data.

Workflow – allowing key bits of information and documents to be routed around an organisation giving people accessibility to the documents and the information they need when they need it.

Workflows ensure that the users are updated with any up and coming tasks that need completing this may mean authorisation, payment due, documents missing, invoicing errors.

A simple workflow might be internal documents that are required to be printed routing around an office to a specific printer or copier thus reducing printing and copying costs.

A complex workflow might be creating a document electronically from the point of capture and fully automating it, removing the need for paper and resource required to manage it

process automationReporting – the final part of the process which creates and distributes information that give a visual representation of ‘live data’ giving a snapshot in time of that current process.

Collating accurate data in real time can be impossible when trying to gather information manually.

Reports take time to produce and once published they are quickly out of date.

Electronic reporting allows data to be collected from any source at any stage within a process.

This means with up to the minute accurate reports informed decisions can be made which could be critical for the day to day running of the business.

How can process automation benefit your business?

  • Understanding what information is being held and what documents are in the workflow ensures better control and visibility allowing the right people to access the information they need at anytime
  • Business functions can be simplified making it easier and more streamlined
  • Automation = being proactive = efficiency
  • Less reliance on paper and people
  • Data can be shared with anyone in your business
  • Compliance targets and government legislation are met
  • Disaster proof your business processes

That’s it in a nutshell. Process automation involves you taking a hard look at your key business processes, being critical and then looking at areas that can be improved by removing the manual effort and using automation.



Secure Print Management. How to ensure printed information is kept secure?

The ICO (Information Commisioners Officer) is not holding back when it comes to mis-management of data security.

To quickly illustrate:-

A County Council had to pay £130,000 in December 2011 for a breach of data security relating to confidential child protection case details being inadvertently sent out in error.

In Scotland, a Council was fined £140,000 in January this year for disclosing sensitive personal data about children and their carers to the wrong personnel.

A Care Trust in the South-West was fined £175,000 in August for publishing personal details of staff on its website.

At the very heart of these breaches of data confidentiality was the “printer”; the piece of equipment we take for granted everyday when it comes to printing off emails and necessary information we need to record or refer to!


Printers and MFD’s represent a serious security risk.


How so?

In the case of the Welsh Council, the security breach was related to a mix-up at the printer because an unauthorised case worker had picked up confidential child case notes from the shared office printer and then sent them out as part of another report.

An easy mistake to make particularly when you have shared office printers, get distracted and forget until later to collect your printed documents.

Staff rummaging through the tray on the office printer to find the document they printed earlier is commonplace in most organisations.

But it can be an easy fix.

How? A quick installation of a simple but effective print management solution.

That is safe, secure, manageable and effortless.

Many Companies and Councils have basic print reporting software which lets them know how much toner and paper is being consumed but it doesn’t safe guard what and where it gets printed and by whom.

In a busy office, paper can pile up and by the time you go to collect your vital bits of information you find stacks of paper. Its easy for someone to collect their report or email or letter and inadvertently pick up the first few or the last page of what you sent to be printed.

Not having a secure print management solution in place can prove costly. What results is the document being printed again which is time consuming. In the case of the aforementioned Councils it can pose a data protection breach if the information is confidential and specific to an individual only.


Integrated, secure print management software ensures that the printed documents are secure and confidential until the user is ready to authorise and collect them.


By implementing a print management solution with networked printers and MFP’s (multi-functional devices) is the most secure and efficient way of ensuring organisations safe guard themselves against print and data security issues.

Print management solutions provide the tools you need as an organisation to manage a fleet of networked printers and the security of the documents printed.

Human intervention is the weakest link when there is no secure print management solution in place.

Automating manual processes ensures that an organisation can lock down data security throughout the document journey – from creation, sharing, distribution to storage and archiving.

Digital Print Management can advise specify and provide a range of secure document handling processes.

For more information please call on: 01234-271156 or drop us your details here and one of our expert advisors will contact you. 

What information risks have you experienced?

Do you have a policy in your organisation to safe guard this happening? If so please tell us about it.

We are interested to hear and read your comments.

[gravityform id=”4″ name=”Arrange a call back!”]

For our updates please follow us on twitter, like us on facebook and connect with us on linkedin.