What is document automation?

Document automation (also known as document assembly) is the design of interview workflows that lead to the creation of electronic documents.  In the legal sphere, document automation software enables clients to generate legal documents through an online interview or decision tree, adding complex logic, automatic calculations, and special formatting.

Some of these documents can contain hundreds of pages, with hundreds of optional paragraphs and data elements. Automation software has the ability to automatically fill in the correct document variables based on the transaction data.  Automation systems allow companies to minimize data entry, reduce the time spent proof-reading, and reduce the risks associated with human error.

While document automation software is used primarily in the legal, financial services, and risk management industries, it can be used in any industry that creates transaction-based documents.

Companies like LegalZoom and RocketLawyer offer automated document production for individuals and small businesses.  However, software tools like Documate allow any lawyer or professional to create their own LegalZoom/TurboTax/RocketLawyer by (1) customizing the questions that the user is asked and (2) dictating (a) where those answers are populated and (b) what documents are issued at the end of the process.

Similarly, legal aid organizations use document automation to more efficiently deliver legal services with their limited numbers of lawyers.  In large law firms document assembly systems are increasingly being used to systemize work, such as complex term sheets and the first drafts of credit agreements.  This has been seen as heralding a trend towards commoditization whereby technologies like document automation result in high volume, low margin legal services being ‘packaged’ and provided to a mass-market audience.

Are you considering document automation for your company?  Voted the easiest to use automation platform, Documate can help.  Documate is a powerful, but no-code platform for created automation workflows.  Go to www.documate.org to learn more about for Documate‘s document automation and legal app builder.