Adlib’s Product Management team deserves some serious kudos for the email integration features released with 5.3. In looking at the typical product approaches to ingesting email into content management and conversion systems, Adlib’s enhanced email capabilities stand out as a great example of listening to the market and solving the pain points.
For many firms, email is the single largest volume of unstructured content that needs to be embraced alongside all of the other structured and semi-structured content throughout the organization. In addition to fueling workflows and enhancing the value of combined content, the automated ingestion of email is essential to eDiscovery. The most common approach to importing email content into knowledge management systems is to use OCR. This has two big problems:
- OCR only gets part of the content: By taking pictures of email, the image is typically limited to the main body of the content. Attachments often appear as an icon but the content from the attachment is abandoned. Nested email is similarly overlooked. Truncated email often results in the body content being cut off so even these basics fall short.
- OCR is not 100%: Even at the 99% accuracy of the very best OCR systems, 10 out of every 1000 characters will be wrong. This causes a modest problem for content analysis and a very big problem for confidence and legal defensibility. Those responsible for the accuracy of the content simply cannot certify that the ingested content is a true likeness of the source.
Adlib solves the problem of email ingestion failures by connecting directly to POP3 and SMTP systems (with or without SSL or TLS encryptions). Email is ingested in electronic format with 100% accuracy of the source. Attachments are handled elegantly and precisely with a variety of settings on how you want that content to be brought along. Failed mail ingestion for nested and truncated email is avoided because Adlib deals with the actual email content and not a picture of the content. Another really smart thing to extend these capabilities is that Adlib includes the ability for the connector to monitor specific email boxes. Attachments can be automatically converted and returned to the user in an enhanced PDF format.
Nice job team! Clients that were already aware of these issues will applaud first but the many that find their problem solved before they faced it will likely applaud the loudest. We’re continually pushing our Roadmap and exploring exchange integration as well as customer use cases around email archive to PDF/A. We’d love to get your feedback on these issues so be sure to contact your Customer Success representative or send an email to email@example.com and tell us what you think about ‘email as a record’ and its downstream processing.