Environmental reports, automated

Leading environmental consultancy uses Rulestar to automate environment survey reports and other key deliverables.

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About the Enterprise

This environmental consulting firm advises property developers, resources companies, industry associations and all levels of government on urban planning developments, mining projects and property transactions. Their key deliverables are written reports such as Environmental Survey Reports, Environmental Impact Statements, etc. Although these are long and highly complex documents, and the content naturally differs in each case, these documents address common considerations and share a similar structure. Accordingly, they approached Rulestar to investigate their options for automation.

This is an indicative case study that illustrates what can be achieved by using Rulestar for automation.

The Challenge

The first challenge in this case was the firm’s task of collating and curating its own intellectual property. Prior to automation, although they did maintain a bank of templates and example documents, the content was dispersed across hundreds of separate files, many of which were stored locally in different offices worldwide. Accordingly, their precedent content often had inconsistent formatting and was never properly updated.

Their templates were littered with square brackets, highlighting and drafting notes. Automation would require extracting all drafting notes and converting them into logic and guidance in a smart online form. Management wanted the production of all reports for all industries to be centralized in a single Smart Q&A form if possible. The firm was also concerned that automation may be challenging because these reports are often “glossy”, image-heavy documents containing numerous pictures that need to be carefully placed amongst the text content.

The Solution

The management team was astounded that they were able to use Rulestar to automate their reports without the need for any coding and without software developers. Indeed, the process of automating their content was many times faster than the time it took them to collate and organize their templates and example documents. All drafting notes were removed from the documents and, if not baked into the logic controlling the automation, were added into Rich Text Fields within the Smart Q&A form.

Rulestar’s unique Image Content Controls feature provided the solution for merging the numerous images (ie, logos, artistic photographs, technical drawings and diagrams, etc) that are needed for each generated document. This enables images to be dynamically resized to fit the available space of each image placeholder. You can learn more about merging images into generated documents in our Knowledge Base.

The Result

By automating its primary revenue-generating activity – ie, the production of customized environmental reports – this leading consultancy has revolutionized its business. The firm was able to centralize report creation through a single Smart Q&A form, over which management has total control, and which encompasses multiple report types (eg, Survey Reports, Environmental Impact Statements, etc) and industries (eg, Infrastructure, Telecommunications, etc). This enables reports to be generated many times faster, by more junior staff, with less proof-reading and editing needed from senior team members. This has had a direct positive impact on profitability.

Rulestar’s unique image-handling features have slashed production times even for “glossy” image-heavy documents. Reports are now produced with greater consistency across the firm and output documents are more stable, which is crucial for long and complex documents such as these deliverables.

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Logic should never be a limitation. With Rulestar, you can capture all of the knowledge and reasoning of subject-matter experts into an automated system.

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