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The Value of Financial Document Automation

Financial document automation unlocks many benefits banking sector, including enhanced productivity, streamlined workflows, and improved scalability.
Notarize
April 21, 2022
5 min

Providing online customer experiences has become mission-critical for the financial services industry. FinServ businesses are highly regulated, and this can create tension with consumers who may no longer want to travel to a physical location to open an account. Still, financial institutions need to collect documentation under Know Your Customer (KYC) requirements, which can lead to compliance challenges and convoluted document management processes. With financial document automation, organizations in the sector can unlock a number of benefits to help drive revenue, increase productivity, and embrace digital transformation in the customer experience.

What is financial document automation? 

Financial document automation solutions process documents with static and dynamic content according to predefined rules. For example, some documents require the same information, such as customer name and date of birth, which are static inputs for all new accounts. Meanwhile, other documents require different information or formats, especially when working with international customers.

Financial document automation indexes and stores these documents for a seamless process that digitizes document management so financial institutions can bring paper documents online.

What are the benefits of financial document automation?

Since financial institutions are heavily regulated, they need to have all the documentation that proves their compliance while also meeting customers where they are - online. Financial document automation gives the financial services industry a way to meet these divergent interests. 

Reduces time spent on manual tasks

Whether in-person or online, manual document collection processes are time-consuming. Employees must compare the documents provided against a checklist and review them. On the other end of the spectrum, financial institutions also collect documents when a customer relationship ends. With document automation, companies can establish an end-to-end digital process that enhances audit trails and reduces fraud risks. 

Simplifies complex procedures

Within financial services, most organizations have detailed processes and procedures for collecting and maintaining records. Collecting paper documents requires scanning and data entry, and then ensuring that the entries are correct. Financial document automation simplifies these procedures and helps to reduce the risk of human error.

Increases productivity

By automating these redundant tasks, employees can spend their time on value-added activities. For example, instead of manually verifying all Know Your Customer documentation, organizations can automate the process so that their employees can focus on helping customers with account issues or completing transactions. 

Saves money

With document automation, financial services organizations reduce the costs associated with paper documents. Most regulatory mandates require data retention of five years or more. With digital documentation automation, organizations can reduce costs associated with these requirements by leveraging cloud storage instead of physical storage. Additionally, document automation saves money on basic office supplies such as paper, printers, and scanners.

Streamlines management of high-volume work

Financial institutions manage a lot of paperwork, including things like customer welcome letters and terms and conditions. Document automation integrates directly into these workflows to streamline the management of these tasks.

Supports communication between different departments

Deposit and lending departments often overlap, collecting and sending similar documentation. For example, new deposit account documentation includes a government-issued ID and utility bill as proof of residency. The lending department and internal auditor both require this documentation. With document automation, the different departments can collaborate more effectively and efficiently. 

Improves scalability

As financial institutions scale their business and move into new global markets, the amount of documentation required also increases. However, much of this documentation needs to be customer-specific, such as tables, charts, and calculations. With document automation, the institution can focus on updating only the dynamic data rather than the static information across multiple languages and jurisdictions. 

Helps maintain compliance

Compliance is often viewed as a pedantic process, requiring financial institutions to prove that they sent the right document with the required information within a specified time frame. For example, they need to send monthly account statements as well as annual privacy statements and tax documentation. With document automation, financial institutions ensure that they send the appropriate notices within the required timeframes. 

Financial document automation use cases 

Automating documentation provides value, but understanding the different use cases gives greater insight into how an organization can leverage these processes effectively. 

Notarization

Online notarization for financial institutions means that customers applying for loans or closing a mortgage may no longer need to visit a physical branch. Customers don’t have to plan to be on location when the internal notary is working, enabling more flexibility in the customer experience.

Loan documents or commercial lending

As consumers increasingly want to shop around for the best rates, they want to start the lending process online rather than in-person. Document automation gives customers and loan officers a way to gain visibility into the lending process. For example, customers can upload documents or authorize third-party data sources to complete the process. Loan officers get notifications, which means they no longer need to set reminders for following up via email or telephone. 

Customer financial statements

Document automation empowers customers and improves engagement during financial transactions by providing self-service capabilities like downloading a consolidated statement from multiple business systems, such as deposits and lending. 

Templates designed for a globalized world

Financial institutions can leverage document automation solutions to create templates that allow them to meet global regulatory requirements. This way, employees can change templates without having to ask for help from the IT department. 

Digital notarization as part of financial document automation

Document automation is key to a financial institution’s digital transformation strategy. With Notarize, organizations can eliminate the manual tasks associated with notarizing documents. They can also meet their compliance requirements and speed up processes through our online notarization platform. The platform enables 24/7 on-demand notary services, so that customers gain a better experience by saving time. Learn more about how Notarize can help streamline workflows in your financial institution.

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