Article

FAQ: Is Automating Document Creation, Assembly, and Distribution Worth It?

IBM i, Windows
Ready to automate document creation?
Posted:
Jan. 26th, 2017

 

Documents constantly need to be created at your organization, no matter whether you’re in manufacturing, education, or healthcare. But the process to create a document—whether it’s an invoice, employee document, or patient record—can be complicated.

Older methods of document creation, assembly, and distribution often slow your organization down. But is switching to sophisticated document creation software the right choice?

Find out. Here we compile the most common questions we receive about automating document creation, assembly, and distribution. How does it work? Is it worth it? Why should we choose HelpSystems? And we’ll show you how HelpSystems Document Management (RJS) can revolutionize your document creation process.

 

Why can’t we just keep using pre-printed forms?

Technically, you can. But it will cost you. You’ll keep needing to buy those expensive pre-printed forms and maintain that dusty old Dot matrix printer. Creating documents will continue to be a drag on your time. And, over time, pre-printed forms are going to become harder and harder to find. You’re either setting yourself up for a whole lot of struggle or you’re only deferring the inevitable.

Aside from the costs and time involved, there’s also the perception of your business to consider. It’s expected that growing businesses use modern technology. Your customers expect you to be on the cutting edge, but those pre-printed forms are only slowing you down. Switching to more sophisticated document creation software eliminates the problems associated with pre-printed forms.

 

What’s wrong with my existing forms software?

As software grows older, it’s hard to manage and maintain—especially when the forms package in question is no longer supported. Plus, outdated forms packages often lack cross-platform capabilities. The software can’t keep up with your organization’s needs or with advancements in technology.

With overlay forms software, the problem is in the coding—all of the coding and guesswork you need to do in order to update anything on a form. It’s not visual, and it’s certainly not intuitive to most business professionals.

And older visual design software is often not as visual as you would like—coding is still involved to some extent. For instance, you need to use characters in order to create something. It’s not a simple drag-and-drop process.

 

Do I need to give up my AFP forms?

Not necessarily. AFP utilities won't be supported on IBM i 7.3 and later, which means it is time to start looking for a replacement. But you don't need to give up your AFP forms immediately. With a forms solution from HelpSystems, you'll be able to run modern forms alongside your AFP forms. You can convert the AFP forms gradually and still retain them for future use. 

 

What makes HelpSystems document creation software different?

HelpSystems Document Creation and Assembly software—including iForms—solves the challenges and eliminates the struggles of working with pre-printed forms and older forms software. It’s compatible across platforms (including Windows and IBM i) and it works harmoniously with your other systems (like an ERP). Plus, the software offers visual design tools to make it easier for you to do your job efficiently.

Ready to automate document creation? Get started >

 

How will it help me speed up my processes?

Automation—plain and simple. The software comes with the technology to monitor output queues, create documents based on that information, and deliver it to whoever needs it—all automatically.

The software also makes it easy to speed up any document creation, assembly, and distribution task. Visual design and the ability to use existing information makes it quick and easy for anyone to create a document (like an invoice). Documents can be seamlessly merged into one file or assembled into one packet—even across platforms. And all you need to do to distribute documents is click.

 

Do we need to be running on a particular platform?

Nope. HelpSystems document creation software can run on Windows, IBM i—or both! You decide what makes most sense for your organization.

 

How hard is it to create documents and forms with HelpSystems products?

Not hard at all! In fact, it’s incredibly easy. You won’t have the restrictions of working with pre-printed forms. The documents and forms you create can be printed on standard paper. And you won’t have to do any coding. The software delivers visual design. That means you can customize your documents and forms as much as you want—without needing to be a programmer. Plus, you can use existing information from your systems—i.e., a customer name or number—to create a document without jumping through any hoops.

 

Can we really use existing information to create a document?

Absolutely. No matter whether your information lives on Windows, IBM i, an ERP, or another system, you can use it to create documents.

For instance, a utility company may have a spooled file with customer information. But they might also have other data in a billing system that they want to use for line item information. With HelpSystems document creation software, that utility company can bring together all of that information on one document. And they can do it without any hassle.

 

Is it possible to bundle multiple documents together?

Of course. HelpSystems document creation software makes it easy to merge multiple documents into a single file or to assemble documents into a single packet.

For example, a manufacturing company needs to create and deliver an invoice. But there are other documents that need to be sent along with it. Often, these might include an engineering drawing document or product design specifications. With HelpSystems, you can create the invoice and easily assemble it with supporting pages into a single packet. You can output the packet to a PDF, or you can print it to ship with the product to the customer.

 

What are my distribution options?

Whatever you want them to be. Really. HelpSystems document creation software comes with built-in capabilities to output documents and forms however you need them. PDF? Yes. Spooled file? Of course. Email? Instantly. Print? Definitely. Any other way you can think of? You bet!

 

Is it really worth it?

Document creation ROI can be difficult to calculate—but we can help you there, too. Here’s what we know right off the bat: pre-printed forms and outdated software cost too much, and your organization’s time is too valuable to waste. Automating document creation, assembly, and distribution processes adds up to very real savings—and we’d like to help you find yours.

 

Why should we choose HelpSystems?

There’s a lot more to form and document creation than just creating a document. It’s about streamlining and automating your processes so that document creation, assembly, and distribution fast, easy, and cost-effective.

Your organization has unique processes where documents are concerned—and the HelpSystems document management experts are skilled in understanding your processes and finding areas where you can improve them.

 

How do we get started?

It’s simple. All you need to do today is schedule your consultation. We’ll talk through your processes and discuss how HelpSystems document creation software like iForms can help you automate them. Then, we’ll show you how the software can meet your specific needs.

Ready to make your document creation process simple?

Get a free consultation and see how HelpSystems Document Creation and Assembly software, like iForms, will work for you.

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