Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Keep your documents safe with the Digital Certificate Access plug-in

Nowadays Digital Certificates are commonly used, maybe because our security concerns are growing fast. If you are worried about who can access to your company documents, a log-in system that uses Digital Certificates is one of the best options.

We have developed the Digital Certificate Access plug-in, using it you can add three more different security levels to your Nuxeo or Athento log in process.

How it works?

Let's explain the log in process using Digital Certificate Access plug-in:

  1. Checking your Digital Signature: Once you have choose to access with a digital certificate, and selected your certificate, it performs a digital signature. This digital signature is validated for the plug-in. If your signature is invalid, you can not access to the ECM platform. 
  2. Checking your Digital Certificate: The system must also check if your certificate is valid. If it's valid you can continue the log in process.
  3. Performing an user identification process: Your digital certificate contains your national identification number, and this ID must exist in a ID's directory in your ECM platform.
This plugin is now avalaible from our Athento Marketplace.

Athento has helped BBVA bank, discover how, download this story right now!
download this success case as PDF

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Monday, September 24, 2012

Athento Marketplace: The first ECM Store

Yerbabuena Software launches the first online store where you can find, buy and enjoy advanced features for the leading ECM platforms.

Athento Marketplace makes it easy the way we add new features to our ECM software. We want it to become the Google Play of Enterprise Content Management Software: You like it, you got it!

The idea is to avoid awful set up processes that take too long.

We start with available plugins for the Athento, Nuxeo (from 5.4.2) and Alfresco platforms, but we expect to add soon plugins for other platforms. For Athento or Nuxeo's (5.3.2 and 5.4.2 versions) users we have developed the Athento Marketplace Plugin. If you install it, you will be able to buy and install new features within your Nuxeo or Athento. The Athento Marketplace Plugin is totally free.

Another good news is that you don't have to pay a monthly subscription. You don't even have to create an account. If you want to buy something nice for your ECM platform, just fill out the purchasing form.
Besides, all plugins' updates are free.
 Start enjoying the Athento Marketplace today and save up to 90%.

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Thursday, September 20, 2012

What are Document Types and their relation to Document Capture?

Beyond the custom document types you choose to work with in your company (XYZ template, claim form, service termination request, correspondence, etc.), or typical document types we use frequently in all industries (invoices, quotes), there are some generic types of documents important to consider in data capture projects of digitized documents.

Remember that document capture is used for automatic metadata completion or as a way to automate the data entry to another enterprise application (ERP, Accounting Software etc.) and that this is a task for the capture software.

1. Structured Documents

This are documents in which we know what information we'll find and where it is phisically located in the document (coordinates). An example of this document types are forms, templates, passports, ID cards, etc. For example, all California ID cards contain the same information and it is located in the same position. In this type of documents, it's very easy to find and extract data, since we know where to look for. 

In this video of athento's iCapture module we can see how with this Document Types users can define data extraction templates, indicating in Athento's OCR tool what data to extract and the coordinates where this data is located in a very easy way.

2. Semi-structured Documents

Management challenges keeps growing as soon as the content inside documents is less structured.
The semi-structured documents are those in which we know what information we'll find, but not exactly where we'll find it. A classic example of this type of documents is invoices.

An invoice must include a VAT, a Tax ID, an amount total and customer / seller data like an address among others. Regardless of the seller, we know that a bill will include this information, but there's no way we can guarantee that such information will be placed by all of our suppliers in the same area of the invoice.

The Tax ID may be to the right, but it could also be on the left of the document. In these cases we know what we're looking for but just don't know where to find it.

The way to extract data from semi-structured documents can not be the same as in the previous case, here we need to teach the software how to find what we're looking for. For example, before the value number of the VAT or whatever amount taxed you should find the word "VAT" or "Taxes".

More advanced applications of data mining and capture, like Athento's Document Capture, not only look for regular expressions, but they also try to contextualize the information sought, indicating their relationship with smaller structures within the document such as tables, images, paragraphs, etc..

3. Unstructured Documents 

In this document type, we don't what we'll find, or where. The difficulty of extracting data from these documents is maximum. We can find repports, letters, technical documents, etc.
I should clarify, that according to some authors, the second group (semi) doesn't exist, and documents such as invoices are included in this group.

Specifically, for the AIIM, an unstructured document meets three characteristics:
  • The structure of the document has not been designed by the company that now wants to manage them (ie are external documents)
  • The structure of these documents may vary depending the sender (for example, in the case of invoices, each provider has its own model)
  • They can't be processed sticking to a template.

This original post was published here by Verónica Meza in our spanish blog. We hope you found it useful!

For any help on intelligent document management or capture, feel free to contact us in our brand new Silicon Valley location. We want to hear from you! Yeey!

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Monday, September 17, 2012

Athento Capture: Advanced Document Capture

With large digitization projects and the need for many companies to streamline their nutrition management systems (ERP, CRM, business intelligence software, human resource software and contract management software) with data from documents, or simply increase the accuracy and reliability of the data (as the information entered manually has a high error rate) of advanced document capture charges indisputable value. 

Unfortunately, for too long document capture software has been little implemented because of the requirements of high technical expertise and above all, it was terribly expensive. Today, most companies on the market that sell capture solutions are for integration with Document Management Systems and other management software. Document capturing have always been considered a key functionality of an ECM system (Enterprise Content Management).

The non-functional requirements of Athento´s Capture software have been to focus on increasing the ease of use and learnability of the product. We believe after extensive testing that Athento´s Capture meets the high standard we set out to achieve.

Athento Capture includes a series of process-oriented functions that can performed on an image and can help companies to perform tasks such as document recognition and classification, separation of batches of documents and automated data extraction.

Although Athento already had a powerful module called Smart Capture LDES (Load, Detection, and Extraction Services), we wanted to improve the functionality. The main advantage of Capture over Smart Capture is the "template designer" allows users to create templates for structured images like Identification documents; these templates can then be used for the automatic extraction of data. The functionality is extremely intuitive and eliminates the need for a technician to configure the extraction code data.

Contact us now! We can help and improve the enterprise content management system of your organization. 

Discover how Athento's intelligent document capture technologies workdownload it

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Thursday, September 13, 2012

We are now official Alfresco partners

We are now officially Alfresco partners para Estados Unidos y América Latina.
Athento will start publishing soon some modules developed for Alfresco. As a technology partner of this Document Management giant, we offer an enhanced feature list with Athento, an intelligent layer connected to Alfresco and providing value on the document capture side.

There are lots of news coming up this quarter, access to intelligent document management features will be much easier for your DM platforms and we will tell you about our success stories and new modules. Stay tunned!!

Alfresco Software, Inc.
In 2005, Alfresco was created to disrupt the enterprise content management market with a next-generation, open source platform for content-rich apps. Mission accomplished.
Today, Alfresco is now on its 4th major version and has been downloaded over 3.5 million times by developers and IT organizations globally.  Alfresco is a full ECM platform with powerful capabilities.

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Monday, September 10, 2012

Defining CMIS

Expanded CMIS is: Content Management Interoperability Systems.  It is a open source standard, meaning it is available to the public. Though initially it was a product of private initiative driven by big businesses of Enterprise Content Management (ECM) systems like IBM, Microsoft and EMC. As the initiative made progress and others contributed, it was eventually accepted by all as a standard and the responsibility was passed on to the OASIS committee.

So, what does the standard apply to?  
It outlines the rules guiding how Content Management Systems communicate, particularly communication with other repositories. The standard defines communication methods such as Web Services, REST / Atom, which can be used for ECM systems.

Key Points
  • The CMIS standard makes it much easier to transfer content from one repository to another. As it removes compatibility issues that previously existed. For example companies often have more than one repository for storing data and these repositories can be managed using different software. So for this reason it can be difficult to merge the stored data onto one repository.
  • The standard allows Content Management Systems to communicate with other applications: Invoice management applications, CRM applications, collaborative tools, BPM, vertical business applications, etc. These applications produce and feed off content that should be stored in a single repository, not a repository belonging to each different application. If we have a single repository it means that we don´t have to deal with data duplication, outdated information, versioning problems, etc..
  • The standard also allows a comprehensive system of content management that consists of other content management systems to function efficiently. This is common for large companies with offices in different countries in which each has its own repository but there is a need for documents from all repositories to be accessed from a single point.
What was the problem before CMIS? 
Well since each repository had its own Content Management System that had its own software for the two systems to communicate it required more interfacing software. More interfacing software meant further development time and added complexity to the system.That meant time and money.
Athento is the solution. Contact us now! We can help and improve your document management company.

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Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Scanning: The Benefits of Digitization

According to the technical report "Information and documentation - Implementation guidelines for the digitization of records", ISO 13028, there are several benefits to digitization. 

Let's discuss them: 

Digitization offers the following potential benefits to organizations: 

- The ability for more than one person to access images at once: 
Users can concurrently access the same image. A company or organization does not need to acquire and keep several copies of one image.

- Access from anywhere at any time: 
Really this benefit is closely related to the previous one, but the previous point was specific to concurrency in number of users (20 users imagine sharing a new procedure to be implemented in a company or organization). Apart from access while users can do from different locations, different devices , anytime.The physical documentation usually has a schedule of access, but the business world (and the public goes along) knows no timetables or regions, making business and operations throughout the week, especially when SMEs start internationalize and presence in several markets at once (you do not have to be in the same time zone). 

- Greater integration with business applications: Integration is one of the fundamental pillars of document management, since many business applications produce documents, and also many applications that exploit them. 

- The ability to transmit images within a structured workflow to facilitate: 
The process of transferring hard copies of images can be really expensive, in time and physical material (ink, paper). 
The imaging process with minimal quality are really expensive, in time and physical material (ink, paper). To collaborate on images, whether flat, scanning documents (ID cards etc..), To annotate these documents and make comments without these modify the image itself allow us to provide information about the image, etc. about their suitability. but not modify or attach paper documents that should be generating at various stages of proceedings. In short, all that means t ork team on documents and content . 

- The elimination of hybrid systems (paper and digital) that can confuse users who want access to the entire history of a case: 
When we change environments when speaking of the same compendium of information, we will inevitably lose some information along the way. There will be some updated documents in digital paper that are obsolete, and in many cases it will be difficult to know which is the latest version of the document or set of documents in question. Furthermore, as indicated from the norm, tracking (history) to the evolution of the document will be really difficult to do, since the document may be digital in some versions, and on paper in a specific location for other versions. 

- The ability to reuse existing resources limited by its format, such as large maps or materials stored on microfilm or magnetic tape: 
Of course, the physical resources are limited, both the size of printing as to the cost of storing. Store large volumes of maps, etc paper documents. has an associated cost huge in itself, not only by the slow search or access difficulties, but simply because the square meter of land is expensive, and populate it with data in the form of paper does not seem the best investments perform. 
Hence the benefits of using other methods like the "cloud" . 
It is important to be clear about the difference between having the document management system or ECM software in SaaS mode or on our servers, as both options have pros and cons, and the decision always depends on the specific problem of your organization ..

- The application of classification and indexing methods consistent for document retrieval, especially for hybrid records: 
Recovery methods of physical documents, using technologies such as RFID, pose real expensive and lengthy projects in implementation time. The classification of physical documents always being done in digital since the publication of a classification scheme is something virtually untreatable physical (imagine a library with a Flexible invetario done on paper ... really impossible ..) 

 - Integration with the organization's procedures for disaster recovery and backups: 
 Backup copies of paper documents, in a really high percentage of cases, not performed. The reason is that it tends to ensure the environment but mantenero physical duplication in at least two locations of paper documents, would involve an investment really high. However, once digitized documents, this is immediate. There are many ways to make automated backups over time (incremental backups) completely transparent to all users in an organization.Apart from specific solutions, we have generic solutions and affordable basis as server vendors in cloud environments. 

- Obtaining a copy protected and safe: 
A backup of a paper document requires either alone scanning of the document or use a capture process to perform a physical reproduction (with paper waste, electricity and associated with printing ink). The backup in an encrypted environment is performed in most cases in a matter of less than one second. 

- The potential reduction in physical storage space: 
This point we have described extensively, but we must insist, as we have seen in the Madrid (Paseo de la Castellana) companies spend an entire floor of its facilities to store documents. It really is property whose rent amounted to tens of thousands of euros, and again, not talking about the slow searches or security, but only the cost associated with the surface , bone sq.m / euros / month 

The ability to increase the productivity of the organization: 
Document capture systems that support document scanning reported drastic reductions of manual labor, or what is the same, release team task as identifying documents, archiving according to their type and extraction information contained in the documents. Between 60 and 90% of the costs of such tasks are entirely avoidable using support advanced capture system. 

Contact us now ! can help and improve enterprise content management (ECM)of your organization. 

Discover how a smart document capture process it


Saturday, September 1, 2012

Tips for Choosing a Document Management Company

Once you start searching for a document management company or an ECM software provider, you will quickly realize that not all of the available options will be able to meet your company’s needs. By taking these tips into consideration you will improve your odds of choosing a document management company that will help your company run more efficiently, increase your profits and allow you stay competitive in today’s continually evolving technological world.

One of the first things you should look for is a company that makes security a top priority. This applies to both electronic and physical security. A company that is serious about protecting its customers will have security personnel as well as security cameras in place. In addition, if a physical or electronic break-in does occur, they should have procedures in place to deal with it. They should also offer their clients secure online access to their documents, as well as access controls on their side to protect your data from both ends.

Check to make sure that the companies you are considering have positive references from other businesses within your industry, or at least similar industries. To give you a concrete example, if your business is thinking of incorporating electronic document management and document scanning and capture software into your accounts payable department, find out if the document management company in question has provided the same type of service to any businesses in the same situation before, and to what degree of satisfaction.

Another important factor to consider is whether the company’s service is going to be flexible enough to meet your business’s needs. Do they offer a variety of solutions that can handle all of your document management and imaging requirements? You should generally avoid any companies that require your firm to dramatically change your processes to work with their methods. A quality document management company will be able to fit their processes into your company’s requirements.

One of the main ways that a top-notch document management company will be able to meet the needs of every client is by having multiple options for how the documents can be processed, such as by offering both on-site and outsourced scanning options. No matter what your needs, your document scanning company or capture software provider should be able to rise to the occasion. If you need some of your documents scanned on site while others can be dealt with at an outsourced location, the company you are considering should be able to oblige. Your documents should be available in a variety of forms from a repository accessible from the web, or if you prefer, a solution should be made available that runs in-house.

The final factor you should consider is the price. While the cheapest option might not always be the best, the right company for your job should be able to offer their services at a cost that does not eat up too much of your profits. A trustworthy document scanning company will make all of your costs clear up front, instead of tacking on extensive and confusing additional fees at every turn.

Author Bio:

Guest post was contributed by Justin Epley on behalf of Engelbert Strauss. Justin is a freelance business writer. His articles appear on various online business publications.
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