Automated Document Factory (ADF)

Thrive with automated print and mail workflow

What's the cost of a print and mail system that isn't versatile or scalable and can't track every piece? Significant. Manual processes not only slow you down but also make it harder to adjust to customer expectations, postal rules, market trends and changing regulatory requirements. You can't thrive if you're using disconnected manual steps for data creation, formatting, printing, finishing and mailing —and errors creep in. Instead, automate! With Automated Document Factory (ADF) print and mail software, you will gain:

  • Control
    See, manage and report on your entire operation, across sites, from a single dashboard.
  • Efficiency
    Cut costs by defining workflows easily, improving pre- and post-print tasks, eliminating manual costs and errors and qualifying for postal discounts.
  • Flexibility
    Adapt to changing business conditions, bring new work on board and manipulate data for new capabilities and opportunities.
  • Scalability
    Start small if you like and add/remove hardware or software, using the same core system.
  • Integrity
    Monitor each document through the entire production process, reconcile jobs, automate reprints and prove compliance easily.
  • Interoperability among devices, applications and processes
    No need to standardize on Ricoh products. Use the printers, inserters and software you already have or ask us for recommendations.

Multiply your benefits with an ADF

In the new world of work where everyone is always connected, you want to be able to make information accessible to your customers when and where it's needed. Become a multichannel master, and a lot more, with our ADF. For example, you can transform and manipulate data for all kinds of purposes: personalize every piece you produce, pursue new work like statements or explanations of benefit, or pull out certain documents and create PDFs for web viewing.  You'll fit right into a mobile world with a solution that's earned the highest ratings from industry analysts Gartner and IDC.

Increase postal discounts, improve quality

Postage, which is close to 75 percent of total production costs, is the gorilla in the room. Just printing and inserting thousands or millions of documents every month is a lot, but now you have to figure out how to qualify for U.S. Postal Service (USPS) discounts. You don't have to do this on your own. Our ADF team is up to speed on USPS rules. We'll implement them efficiently in your workflow software, and you don't need to devote your life to being a USPS expert.

Put Sherlock on the job

With our ADF workflow, you can account for everything, know that each piece is produced correctly and create the reports to prove it. The ADF applies unique barcodes to each piece, and they make tracking foolproof. While piece-level tracking isn't essential for marketing collateral, it really simplifies jobs that involve critical communications — documents like statements or HIPAA communications that are regulated, personalized or customized — and reduces the risk of missed deadlines, unhappy customers and legal exposure.

Run your shop from a single point of control

Do you use numerous software packages, each with its own user interface, to oversee different parts of the shop? It's not unusual, but it's cumbersome. Our ADF integrates your entire production process into one rules-driven dashboard. It even comes with a workflow builder that lets you create simple or complex workflows by dragging and dropping icons. Your operators, regardless of skill level, can log in from anywhere and use it. You'll see what's happening at all times with every job and control everything easily — from receiving jobs to insertion to post office-ready mail.  

Handle high volumes without worry

The database in an ADF runs the show, and you need a powerful one that steps up when your volume increases. IBM DB2® is built into our ADFs, at no extra cost to you. It collects 10 to 15 types of information for each document — for one million documents, this is 10 to 15 million bits of information — and applies your business rules. Other companies that provide ADFs typically don't use DB2. Enough said.



Choose the ADF that's right for you

Regardless of your business size, we'll tailor your ADF workflow and uncover hidden opportunities and savings. You can use RICOH ProcessDirector out of the box for printing and job tracking, for example, or you can opt for purpose-specific solutions, too:

  • Managed ADF if you prefer Opex versus Capex
  • Mailroom Integrity ADF, for automating mailroom printing and insertion
  • Output Management ADF, for managing multiple sites
  • InfoPrint Office On-Ramp, for routing high-cost, one-off mail to your existing ADF

Choose a vendor who's been there, done that

We've worked with data and print-to-mail workflows for more than 20 years. In fact, we invented the Advanced Function Presentation™ (AFP™) datastream, which is the industry's open standard, and we're now offering the fourth generation of RICOH ProcessDirector. If you prefer PDF, no problem. In fact, you can transform and use any datastream. You may even find yourself close to 100 percent efficiency, like many of our customers who work in some of the world's largest financial, insurance and healthcare companies. And because we understand that software runs your business, we'll support you up to 24/7.

Solution Options

Over the years we've developed a few specific Automated Document Factory (ADF) solutions in response to customer requirements: Mailroom Integrity ADF, Output Management ADF and Managed ADF.

Reduce print and mailroom errors, reduce risk

Know that every envelope is mailed with the right customer information. And prove it when you need to. Mailroom Integrity ADF automates mailroom printing and inserting, letting you track pieces from receipt through insertion with 100 percent integrity. It consists of two main functions: receive feedback from inserters and send and receive inserter commands.

Mailroom Integrity ADF connects to every major type of inserter so you can use the equipment you already have or buy the brand you like. And it doesn't stop there. With the assistance of bolt-on scanning solutions, we track documents through other finishing equipment, such as coaters and perfect binders. You can:

  • Automate reprints —to the printer of your choice — with standard or custom reports
  • Eliminate manual reconciliation of your inserter process
  • Monitor existing camera-based or file-based inserters to verify that every page and every envelope are in sequence. An older inserter can be retrofitted with a camera system. In fact, our solution connects to any file-based inserter from any vendor.
  • Detect and log damaged pieces. The solution automatically detects the error and initiates the reprint. Touch only the pieces that go to the shredder.
  • Split/sort/group. Establish rules to help process jobs more efficiently. For example:
    • Change the mail piece production sequence
    • Split larger jobs into smaller jobs
    • Send jobs to different printers and inserters
    • Tag separate documents for e-delivery or PDF archival
Manage one or more sites from a single point of control

Just how easy can it be to keep an eye on your multisite operation? Easy. With ADF Output Management, you can spread work among multiple sites to more fully use your devices or produce the work closer to its ultimate destination. And switch work from one location to another if you need to for backup or disaster recovery purposes. Our ADF team partners with you to assess your environment, select the appropriate functionality—such as print control and queue management, reports, failover systems, transforms, management by deadline and so on—and implements the solution. You can:

  • Batch small jobs. Drive printers and inserters more efficiently, and automatically determine the best flow of jobs.
  • Meet deadlines. Track deadline performance automatically. From a single interface, you can see when jobs are on time, late or in jeopardy.
  • Identify every document. Unique identifiers for every document enable you to make changes quickly, accept new requests and complex jobs, and transition to color more easily.
  • Keep your business running in case of unexpected downtime with optional automatic server failover across devices, between sites, or around the world.
  • Integrate with other business systems, such as customer relationship management (CRM) databases to improve customer service delivery.
Go to the cloud and skip the capital investments

Avoid capital outlays and just make a low upfront investment. Managed ADF gives you all the benefits of a traditional ADF except you pay as you go for services, relying on us for IT and daily administrative support. Choose one of two options:

  • Powered by the cloud
    We host your print-to-mail software in a highly secure and redundant data center. We provide IT configuration and maintenance remotely, along with business continuity capabilities and access to additional services when you want to expand your capabilities.
  • Locally hosted
    You host your print-to-mail software at your location(s). We supply all required server hardware and software, and provide the IT configuration expertise along with remote maintenance. Advanced and custom configurations are available.