Manually creating and preparing documents is a huge productivity drain in the long run.
From emails to presentations to PDFs, much of our professional life is spent on document management and generation.
Then, you have to consider converting, editing, organizing, sharing, documents, and more.
Fortunately, with the right document generation platform, most of your document management worries become automated and your time will be spent much more efficiently.
But not all document generation tools are created equally.
So, if you’re wondering what features you should be looking for in order to maximize efficiency, here’s what we’ll cover below:
- What Is A Document Generation Platform And How Does It Work?
- Why Document Automation Will Benefit Your Business
- Document Examples To Automatically Generate In Most Industries
- How Do Document Generation Platforms Work? Document Generation API Overview
- 8 Factors To Consider When Choosing a Document Generation Platform
- 4 Essential Elements You Should Look For In Every Document Generation Platform
First things first, what’s in a document generation platform?
What Is A Document Generation Platform And How Does It Work?
Document generation is the process of creating typical documents used within a business such as invoices, contracts, sales proposals, work orders, and more.
This is also referred to as document automation, in which the generation is done automatically.
Document automation refers specifically to the use of systems and workflows that assist in creating electronic documents. Traditionally, this was done manually. But with a proper document generation platform, you'll be looking at ready-to-go documents tailored for your specific business needs.
The way this is done is as follows:
- You create templatized documents of the same documents or forms you create manually.
- You use a document generation platform to pull the data from one source (e.g. customer data, contact forms, user info, etc.).
- You automatically generate documents based on the said data. This way, you can create 100s of reports or contracts without manually inputting the data.
See our document templates for an automated PDF generation guide for a more detailed breakdown of this and the most common documents you can generate.
Why Document Automation Will Benefit Your Business
If you can automate your document generation, you’ll find a few benefits that will affect multiple areas of your business. A few benefits such as:
- Reducing the risk of error by employees.
- Higher efficiency and faster document creation times.
- Work consistency and compliance.
- Better organized document management.
- Professional appearance for customer documents.
Wondering what document generation looks like more practically?
Let’s take a look at some industry examples and document types you can automate.
Document Examples To Automatically Generate In Most Industries
In most lines of business, document generation is a crucial part of daily tasks and workflows.
Creating templates or purchasing template-based document generation software can help automate and improve the efficiency of these daily processes.
Examples of industries that would benefit from this type of software include:
- Healthcare to automate patient information records, patient responsibilities and rights documents, invoices, insurance documents, medical history checklists, and more.
- Finance to create confidential reports, invoices, finance action plans, credit reports, and more.
- Utility companies.
- And more.
Meanwhile, some other examples of commonly used document templates include:
- Cash receipts
- Financial statements
- Medical test results
- Patient information records
- Customer confirmation letters
- Customer request forms
- Terms and conditions
- Insurance claims
- Price quotes
- Order confirmation
- And more.
Now, if you’re wondering how exactly you can automate the generation of hundreds of confidential documents, here’s how the tech behind this works.
How Do Document Generation Platforms Work? Document Generation API Overview
Document generation API is a cloud-based service that allows you to add automated document rendering to existing web solutions. An application programming interface manages communications between your platform and server to create documents with custom designs and fields.
Even though PDF rendering tools can generate documents in different formats (e.g., Excel, Microsoft Word, Docs, etc.), PDF format is the most common.
It’s an industry standard for all official communications, claims, requests, and agreements.
PDF is also highly secure and flexible. That’s why most document generation software APIs convert HTML data sources to PDF docs. If you need automated document creation software API, chances are you will also use an HTML to PDF converter.
APIs offer you a bit less freedom of choice than custom functionality. Nevertheless, they include all the features necessary for quality document management automation. You can choose how to handle documents and customize their design with simple settings.
But when it comes to choosing a document generation platform, you’ll find that you have a lot of options - in terms of features and functionality.
So, if you’re not sure where to start, let’s take a look at some considerations and essential document platform elements.
8 Factors To Consider When Choosing a Document Generation Platform
Custom development of document generation capabilities is expensive and time-consuming.
You need to engage software engineers, cover the entire software development life cycle, and maintain the document rendering functionality.
Under such conditions, a third-party API document generator is an optimum solution. It’s affordable, secure, and quick to implement.
Now, here are some considerations when choosing your document generation platform.
1. What document formats you need (PDF, HTML, etc.).
API documentation generators support different formats. You may convert HTML to Excel or create text docs. Nevertheless, HTML to PDF rendering is the most common option.
By converting documents to PDF, you provide users with official communications they can download and sign electronically. PDFs are also highly secure and look equally well online and printed.
That’s why, looking for an API documentation generator, focus on API PDF generators.
2. Choose an API PDF generator with document customization
Standard document conversion tools don’t offer the level of document customization required in web platforms.
They only convert the source file into another format.
So, for example, if you run an eCommerce store, you should choose an API PDF generator with rich personalization capabilities and a template editor.
The software should also allow you to add headers and footers, change page numbers, margins, size, and other parameters.
It’s essential to automate multiple kinds of documents and adapt PDF templates to your business and operational needs.
3. Make sure it supports document retrieval and automatic deletion
API documentation generators like Inkit Render offer additional document management capabilities.
They enable API developers to layer document retrieval. As a result, end users can download the files after they generate PDF documents. It allows storing PDFs locally or printing them for paper-based use.
With quality API PDF generators, you can also choose when the document rendering software automatically deletes the copies of files. This feature is convenient if you handle documents with retention deadlines.