A recently released research report from the Institute of Finance & Management found that more than 80 per cent of all invoices being sent are still on physical paper.

With big data continuing to be a major trend in the marketplace, extracting data from a piece of paper is becoming a business workflow challenge.

Sean Morris, the director of sales for Digitech Systems of Greenwood Village, Colo., told EChannelNews that paper presents a huge impact on any company large or small. “The first thing is they would not be able to take advantage of early payment discounts. Also, could the company be able to collect that data inside of 10 days? That’s the challenge and it can be overwhelming,” he said.

Morris added that the more people touch or deal with paper in a manual environment the more cost prohibitive it gets. Digitech is an Enterprise Content Management (ECM) software vendor that has developed solutions to securely manage, store and get access to data.

Morris was joined by Marc Pickard, senior product manager for Epson, on the EChannelNews podcast about ECN and big data. Click here to listen to the full podcast.

Digitech has found that the number of invoices businesses have to manage is growing, but fewer than half of those are being processed electronically. Digitech’s solution, called PaperVision Capture R87, has an artificial-intelligence engine that can automatically recognize invoices, classify them by vendor, and extract all the data to be uploaded to accounting applications.

Recently, Digitech formed a strategic alliance with Epson, that will see the two companies work together to help document management solution providers organize, secure and manage critical data for their customers.

The partnership will also see PaperVision Capture and PaperFlow, another solution from Digitech on the Epson WorkForce DS-770 and DS-575W Wireless colour document scanners.

Pickard said that information coming into a corporate environment will be on paper. “You can’t force a business to go all digital unless they started that way. Epson has electronic relationships with large partners in the channel but still deal with companies that are not at that level and receive several invoices on paper. If two companies don’t have a digital relationship then paper is still the best way to communicate,” Pickard said in the podcast.

Morris added that by 2025 we should expect to see 10 times the amount of data produced as we saw in 2016, citing IDC research. “How do you manage all that? Organizations need to take action on this. And, on top of that how will it be secured and protected because a large percentage of businesses still deal with paper; so, we partnered with Epson from an ECM point of view to figure out the right structure for these types of customers and to add several layers of security to protect them.”