• Automated Document Assembly

How Does It Work

How does Document Automation work?
  • Programming routinely-used forms to allow completion with less effort and fewer errors
  • On-screen interviews prompt for information to complete the documents
  • Variables (the “blanks” to be filled in) appear throughout the document as needed
  • Calculations and if/then logic can also be incorporated

The Automated Document Assembly process starts with a consultant from Civil Twilight who will meet with your document preparation specialists, to observe how frequently-used documents are created and what automation, if any, is used in the current process. Typically, document automation makes sense if documents are prepared repeatedly and have more than one or two variables that change throughout the document (particularly where those variables appear in multiple places in the document).

If a document automation solution is warranted, the consultant will obtain copies of the documents, review the variable text, and then determine what other improvement opportunities exist in the documents. For example, data needed for preparing documents often exists in the business's database, but must be re-keyed by clerical staff or a document prep specialist to find its way into the documents.

Through our automation solution, this data can be transferred directly into the document assembly software, thus eliminating the time needed for re-keying (and the typos inherent in that process), and providing an opportunity to error check the data integrity of the database itself. Once all variables and other automation opportunities are identified, the templates will be programmed using industry-leading HotDocs® Document Automation software from Lexis-Nexis.

Another outstanding feature of document automation is that it requires those individuals who have specialized knowledge about how to construct your complex documents (what we call a "knowledge monopoly") to reduce that knowledge to a concrete set of rules which are incorporated in the programming contained in the document. The direct effect of this is two-fold. First, these highly skilled individuals can now devote their time to other revenue-generating activities in the organization. Second, the document assembly work previously performed by them can now be accomplished by lower-paid, less-skilled staff, who in turn can build their understanding of the documents and the key concepts that make the documents vary with the help of preprogrammed document as a teaching tool.

Once documents are automated, they undergo a rigorous quality assurance process, in which they are tested to confirm that they assemble as the business requires. The templates are then made available to users on Civil Twilight’s secure website. Password-protected access will be granted only to those employees, customers or suppliers specified by the business. The consultants then train those individuals to assemble the documents using the automated templates.

From a cost standpoint, there are two components to automating document assembly. The first is the document automation and training, which is billed on an hourly basis, and can vary based on the number and complexity of the documents involved. The second component is a nominal per-assembly fee that is tracked via the web site. This fee is based upon your anticipated volume of assemblies.