Did you know that Box is more than just cloud file storage?
Enterprise content management used to be a booming business with big, expensive solutions from vendors like IBM, Microsoft, and OpenText. But now the market has pretty much fully matured with a lack of discernible differentiation.
Web-based content management solutions like Box are one of the most remarkable technological innovations since the advent of the Internet. Seriously! Remember when everything was stored on clunky “Z” Drives?
These files were difficult to search, could randomly disappear, and don’t even get me started with naming conventions or security.
Accessing content from any device and from anywhere in the world is no longer a novel idea. It’s a baseline expectation for how we work with documents today.
And Box has taken this concept a step further by providing a metadata framework for managing the data that lives on documents.
How to Use Box Metadata
Metadata elements in Box store custom information associated with stored documents. This metadata can be entered manually or through their API (more on that later).
What this means is that Box can be used as a repository for any type of business documentation.
Need to archive invoices as a part of an AP Automation workflow? No problem, just create and apply an Invoice Metadata Template to store key invoice information.
Think about the way you work with documents today and imagine a cloud-based system that provides instant access to documents based on the way you work, not the way the IT Department thinks.
Metadata templates enforce uniformity across the entire enterprise. They reduce errors, accelerate data entry, and make advanced searches incredibly powerful.
Box suggests creating metadata templates for each functional group in your organization:
Legal – Classify legal contracts. Capture attributes like signature data, dates, and contract terms making discovery much easier.
Vendor Management – Onboard and manage vendor contracts for easy reporting and cost management.
Sales – Now content is organized by product line, use-case, or other properties based on your team structure.
Marketing – Manage digital assets and empower sales with the information they need. Create digital repositories to streamline brand efforts.
Project Management – Add important structure and status fields directly to documents. Add detail to project work plans to accelerate and communicate progress.
HR – Standardize the entire employee lifecycle from hire to retire. Organize critical forms, and secure confidential information.
Accounting – Standardize complex workflows like accounts payable automation, and track critical information to better manage cash flow.
Box Metadata API
This is where the real magic happens! If you think manually entering metadata for each and every document you want to save in Box is a lot of work, you’re right. And what if you already have metadata in an expensive or aging repository you want to retire?
The best way to get critical metadata into Box is by using their API. Intelligent document processing tools like Grooper have pre-built integrations with Box.
Now, whether you’re working with paper or digital documents, getting metadata into Box automatically and accurately is a simple workflow.
In the case of AP automation, metadata like invoice / PO number, amounts, terms, and dates are automatically captured and put into the correct metadata template in Box.
Now, with the push of a scan button, or the moment a file arrives by email, automated workflows put full-document text-searchable digital files into the correct folder in Box along with accurate and complete metadata.
Play the video below to see this integration in a live demonstration: