A rebranding, an acquisition, and a growing product line have Vasion poised to assist customers on their digital transformation journeys.
All aboard the digital transformation train!
The train is accelerating and will arrive ahead of schedule.
Digital transformation is sweeping across a wide swath of businesses and vertical markets, driven by technological innovation and the COVID-19 pandemic. On board the train is a host of companies developing and introducing products to speed up the digital transformation process.
Let’s find a seat next to one of those companies—Vasion and its CEO Ryan Wedig—to learn what it is doing to drive digital transformation.
Above: Vasion CEO Ryan Wedig
While the dealer channel may not be familiar with Vasion, it has probably heard of its flagship product, PrinterLogic, and MaxxVault, the ECM/document management company it acquired in 2018.
PrinterLogic’s first-generation product was originally sold by Printer Properties Pro,. The product helped businesses migrate from Novell print servers to Microsoft print servers while managing printer properties. In 2012, it introduced a product for managing direct IP printing, eliminating the need for the print server. This led to a need to access the device’s control panel for print management and secure release printing. From 2012 to 2015, PrinterLogic had enough large enterprise customers to encourage the major printer and MFP manufacturers to include its solution on the control panel of their devices.
That was then. Today, the rebranded company now known as Vasion offers a wide range of solutions beyond serverless printing that drive digital transformation, including:
- E-form creation: the ability to create and customize digital forms
- Capture: digitizing of analog content
- Workflow: the ability to create no-code workflows
- E-signatures: facilitating the process for secure and compliant e-signatures
- Integrated content management
The name of the game for Vasion is digitizing content and automating workflows. As the tag line on its website says, “Digitize anything. Automate everything.”
“Over the next five, 10 years, we’re not exactly sure what that window will look like, but there’s going to be a true transformation into digital,” observed Wedig. “We don’t just want to be print.”
Wedig referenced a Gartner study where CIOs reported that COVID-19 had fast-forwarded their companies’ digital transformation plans by six years. Six freaking years!
Ready or not, here it comes.
“Where we thought we would have this nice lazy-river entry into digital transformation, people are saying, ‘If any other thing like that happens again, I can’t get caught with my pants down, we need to be digitally transformed tomorrow,’” observed Wedig.
One way that Vasion is driving digital transformation in the world of legacy printing is by enhancing the technology on the printing device’s control panel. For example, it has made it easier to scan a document and send it to a folder.
“What people want in the long run is to scan it and send it, not just to a folder but directly into an automated business process,” explained Wedig.
To accomplish that, Vasion needed a powerful workflow engine that merged its technology on the printer’s control panel with the ability to scan a document directly into a workflow. That led to the acquisition of MaxxVault.
“They had an awesome workflow engine, they understood the storage on the back end, had some really nascent product on the front end in terms of e-forms, and great customers in the enterprise content management space,” said Wedig.
However, Vasion had a vision regarding MaxxVault’s existing content management solution. The plan was to take the product and kick it up a notch by creating a superior user experience. This required rebuilding the infrastructure, creating a new interface, and repositioning it as a SaaS product. It also took the e-form component of the program and converted it into a zero code, drag, and drop e-form builder page.
“So, when somebody says we need to ingest something digitally, out of the gate, they don’t have to go to a development shop and get custom services to create that form,” explained Wedig. “Their operations guys, or whoever owns that business process, can drag and drop, create the fields, and create a form that can be used internally or externally. We’ve made it really simple so that somebody inside the business operations of the [organization] can build out the logic for the workflow with a day’s worth of training.”
It’s not uncommon to store content in a costly digital storage system in the ECM space. With the new and improved Vasion ECM solution, digital documents are encrypted in transit for third-party sharing, which Wedig described as premium storage capability. The enhanced solution also offers integrations with Google Drive, Box, and OneDrive for users who prefer a third-party storage solution.
The e-signature piece is critical for driving digital transformation. Rather than relying on a third-party digital signature tool, Vasion created its own, which is integrated into the workflow. With the built-in e-signature tool, when a user reaches the e-signature step in the workflow, it initiates the e-signature process, sending the file to the appropriate individuals for their e-signature. Once the signature is sent back, the next stage of the workflow is initiated.
Vasion’s mission, which is nearly mission accomplished, was to create a unique, completely integrated end-to-end solution. The re-imagined Vasion product is called Vasion ST (Single Tenant) and is available now. The external signature piece will be available later this year. Another upcoming release is an enhanced output management tool. Also in the works is a multitenant version of the product, Vasion MT, that will raise the bar on print management by enabling dealers to manage all of their customers’ printers from a single pane of glass.
“That’s a level up from just talking about the latest whizz-bang features of a given printer,” said Wedig. “They’re now able to consult on how to transform that company’s business with this software.”
According to Wedig, there isn’t anything on the market close to what Vasion has done around simplifying the e-form and combining a workflow builder, integrated signature, and integrated storage in a single package.
“Finding something that’s SaaS-based and does all those things is tricky to find,” he said.
However, developing products that transcend print doesn’t mean printing is going away or won’t still be important.
“There have to be more sophisticated ways to automate business processes,” emphasized Wedig. “If printing happens, great, but if we can avoid it happening, even better.”
By providing these digital transformation tools to customers, Wedig believes independent dealers will have an opportunity to separate themselves from the pack.
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