Capture and Import Emails with RPI’s Yoga™ Email Capture

RPI’s proprietary Yoga™ Email Capture (formerly EC Service) is an alternative solution for monitoring and capturing emails and attachments. RPI developed EC Service to provide more robust import and indexing capabilities with fewer issues system compatibility issues. Additionally, EC Service logs more metadata about the email, improving reporting and auditing capabilities.

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Transcript

Alex Lindsey:
Hello, everyone, and welcome to another Webinar Wednesday, hosted by RPI Consultants. Today, we’re going to be talking about our email capture service and how it can help you in all the different workflow and ERP integration solutions that you guys may have.

Michael Madsen:
Hello, everyone. My name is Michael Madsen. I’m a senior consultant with RPI Consultants. I’ve been working with perceptive products, Hyland products, for a little over five years, but also have some experience with other OCR platforms. I specialize mainly in accounts payable solutions, but I also work with human resources and higher education.

And I’m a part-time Dungeon Master.

Alex Lindsey:
He’s a level three wizard. My name is Alex Lindsey. I’m a senior solution architect. I’ve got over six years’ experience working with a lot of workflow, automation processes, and really just focusing on integrations between systems. I do have a focus on accounts payable as well. I’ve been doing that for quite a while, and then I am a whiskey aficionado, level three.

Michael Madsen:
So today, we’re going to go over a little bit, I’ll go through the agenda and what we’re going to talk about. First, we’re going to go through a little bit about RPI Consultants, who we are, what we do. We’ll move into the actual Email Capture Service overview. We’ll go through the overview of what it is, and then some additional features with it. We’ll go through some use cases and examples, and then we’ll wrap up with questions.

Alex Lindsey:
So to start, we’ll talk about ourselves because we are narcissists here at RPI Consultants, at least Mike and I are. So a little bit about us, we have over 80 full-time technical experts. We have project managers, technical architects, consultants, all working to basically help you find solutions for your ERP integrations or your workflow processes, anything like that. We also offer managed services agreements. So if you are kind of in over your head as an administrator and you need some additional help, we can serve that. We set up a ticket system for you. And we also work with a lot of software firms, so Lawson Infor, Kofax, Readsoft, Hyland, OnBase, and Perceptive. So basically, we cover the gamut of different solutions you can do across your enterprise.

Michael Madsen:
So now we’ve gone over what our RPI is, we’ll start talking about the actual EC Service and why you guys are here. The email capture service is an RPI proprietary product, so we actually developed this project in-house, which makes customization very simple. We can just talk to our developers, get things customized and out the door, you don’t have to wait on any third party. It’s a simple end user interface for configurations. So we actually have a GUI with EC service which kind of simplifies setting up inboxes and import configurations, things like that. Its email-service agnostic, so we can pretty much make it work with any email server you might have. Simple integration options with ECM and ERP. What we mean by that is we can actually connect, for example with ImageNow, we can connect directly with integration servers to move those attachments from emails from EC service directly to ImageNow. So we don’t actually have to always rely on an import agent method or something like that.

As far as pricing, it starts at 5,000 dollars. It includes the license, the initial set-up, the configuration and it’s for up to two environments for prod and non-prod.

Alex Lindsey:
So some of that meta-data you can get, and one of the big benefits you can get using EC services. We’ve done a previous webinar on this, but to call this out again, we can grab a lot of metadata from your emails to essentially apply logic down the stream for a document that basically is entering a workflow system or entering a system to be managed in some fashion. That includes your sender data, including your email address, the user, maybe the user account, the subject line, the number of attachments, and the received date and time versus the processed date and time. On the next screen I’ll show you what we’re talking about there.

So essentially, we have a sender email, subject line, so if you have vendors that will automatically put certain details or data in there, that you can make decisions on where it needs to go for approvals or for review, just the division responsibilities, you can use these type of fields to automate certain processes.

You also have your “Received at,” and your “Processed at,” which may seem they are either or basically at the exact same time, while in reality, they’re not. The big benefit of that in tracking this, and again this is a table within a sequel database that you can then use to audit basically and layer on. Setting up an email capture service can be stressful sometimes, especially if you haven’t done one before, so this kind of gives you some visibility into that process.

Receive date, or “Received at,” for instance, is the time in which the document actually entered your email inbox, and the “Processed at” is the time when it was processed at, for instance, when we’re using integration server to push it into Perceptive, at that point in time is when we actually create the document within the system.

You also have number attachments versus number downloaded. Ideally, that is the same number, but at times, you may notice a supplier or someone had sent in 15 attachments or 20 attachments and you only notice that 15 enter the system for a particular workflow review, and then you can use this table to track down, “Okay, I knew it. This email can in at this time, it was sent by this person, I see that there were 15 attachments, and only 10 of them came in.” Then from there, you can kind of investigate and work yourself forward from there.

Michael Madsen:
Right, and to piggy back onto that, to really show the true auditing power of EC service, that’s kind of what Alex is talking about. The “Received at” time if we ever had an issue where maybe EC service went down, or something like that, we would see the discrepancy between the “Received at” and the “Processed at.” Going along with those number of attachments, we could create really simple queries that just say “Show me everything in the table where the two columns don’t add up,” and we easily see what could be our problem emails. Sometimes there may be graphic images or something like that, that we specifically set not to read in, where those numbers may have a discrepancy, but this gives you an idea of what to look at and where to search.

This is just another example of an EC service base, this is just another table. Again, these are just small screen shots of a larger table, so there are lot more columns here. WE kind of just wanted to show right here that this is the table specific for documents, this is the table specifically for attachments that were pulled from emails. We have our integration column right here, which we can take a look at what the unique ID was that was passed from Image Now, in this case we’re using it with Image Now and Integration Server. We actually have a record of what that unique ID was for that transaction.

We also have doc file names where we mark down the name of each attachment file, so this just makes it easy for us to go in, figure out what the email ID was of the original email, link back to the document table we can find literally every step of the process to find any issues that we ema have, or anything like that.

So now we’ll move on to some of the technical specifications of EC service. EC service runs as a Windows service, so it can either go on your existing application server, web server, or mode agent server, whichever server you wanna put it on, we can get it on there and connect it. It can either run a separate database, its own EC services database, or we can piggyback of, say your I-Now database or any other database you have set up. It really doesn’t need access to anything else, so everything EC service-related can be stored in its own tables without relying on another table. The attachments are integrated using ECM integration server or exported. So we talked a lot about things like integration server, and pulling them automatically in, but that may not work for every customer, or every business process. So there is an option for EC service to drop the attachments into, say an import directory on the server so that they can be manually imported using a different import method.