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IBM Datacap OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

IBM Datacap is #4 ranked solution in top Intelligent Document Processing (IDP) tools. PeerSpot users give IBM Datacap an average rating of 7.6 out of 10. IBM Datacap is most commonly compared to ABBYY FlexiCapture: IBM Datacap vs ABBYY FlexiCapture. IBM Datacap is popular among the large enterprise segment, accounting for 75% of users researching this solution on PeerSpot. The top industry researching this solution are professionals from a computer software company, accounting for 24% of all views.
IBM Datacap Buyer's Guide

Download the IBM Datacap Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: July 2022

What is IBM Datacap?

IBM Datacap helps you streamline the capture, recognition and classification of business documents and extract important information. Datacap supports multiple-channel capture by processing paper documents on scanners, mobile devices, multi-function peripherals and fax. It uses natural language processing, text analytics and machine learning technologies, like those in IBM Watson, to automatically identify, classify and extract content from unstructured or variable documents. The software can reduce labor and paper costs, deliver meaningful information and support faster decision making.

IBM Datacap was previously known as Datacap.

IBM Datacap Customers

Turkcell, PowerSouth Energy Cooperative, Central Nacional Unimed, Conqord Oil

IBM Datacap Video

IBM Datacap Pricing Advice

What users are saying about IBM Datacap pricing:
  • "We were using the User Value Unit licensing, which means we get charged per active user of the system, and if I'm not mistaken, we also had it for the rule runner service. They had a PVU license model, which is a processor value unit. For each process that we have in our system, we pay a certain amount of money. We found the pricing to be quite steep. It was really an expensive solution in comparison to Kofax, which had a different licensing model and was actually cheaper overall because they charge per page and not per user and per process."
  • "In Egypt, we have exchange rates that change year to year, and currently, we're facing an increase in the exchange rate between our Egyptian pound and the dollar. Since we have been using IBM DataCap two years ago we had a good price, it was not expensive. However, I cannot say now if it is expensive or not because of the exchange rate. Additionally, I don't have the data of other competitors and I don't know the prices."
  • "It varies, and it depends on the client's requirements and negotiations. Nowadays, Datacap is also included in the IBM Cloud Pak for Business Automation."
  • "If you want IBM Datacap on cloud, which is a service run by IBM, the price can be quite expensive, but if you want to just purchase the licenses and own those yourself, then the price is very competitive."
  • "IBM could offer more competitive pricing. This would allow them to attain more users. Some of our clients are considering moving to a different solution called Encapture which is similar but offers more competitive pricing."
  • IBM Datacap Reviews

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    Sr. IT consultant at HCM Consultant Group GmbH
    Consultant
    Top 20
    A highly scalable and extensible solution based on configurable rule sets, but they should provide better first-line support and an easier way to carry out the customizations
    Pros and Cons
    • "It is highly extensible, which we found to be most valuable. It is a very extensible solution because it is based on configurable rule sets. We were able to amend and adjust the solution and very easily add custom code and custom components. It does require some programming experience, but we found that not to be an issue. We liked its extensibility."
    • "One of the things that we wished for was to have an easier way to carry out the customizations. Currently, if you want to customize data, you need to have a developer with C# knowledge. If IBM could implement a no-code or low-code platform for Datacap, it would be easier to adjust it without needing a developer, which was always the most difficult part."

    What is our primary use case?

    Our use case was related to processing documents that were coming in for the purpose of trade finance. We would scan in the documentation that came from our customers, and we would train the Datacap system to basically recognize certain keywords, pull out the information from the document, and forward this important data to another system. 

    I'm no longer working directly with that customer. My relationship at that point was that we were specialized consultants in the ECM field, and that particular company was our customer. So, we had a vendor-customer relationship with them.

    How has it helped my organization?

    We used its advanced optical character recognition (OCR) capabilities to extract information from the documents to save the time of our knowledge workers. They didn't have to do the tasks manually.

    What is most valuable?

    It is highly extensible, which we found to be most valuable. It is a very extensible solution because it is based on configurable rule sets. We were able to amend and adjust the solution and very easily add custom code and custom components. It does require some programming experience, but we found that not to be an issue. We liked its extensibility. 

    We also liked the fact that the solution was quite scalable. We could just add more service to our solution if we needed more processing power. 

    We also found it to be quite a reliable solution. We didn't have any serious errors, crashes, or unnecessary downtime. We found it to be a relatively stable product with a lot of history and a lot of support from IBM.

    What needs improvement?

    One of the things that we wished for was to have an easier way to carry out the customizations. Currently, if you want to customize data, you need to have a developer with C# knowledge. If IBM could implement a no-code or low-code platform for Datacap, it would be easier to adjust it without needing a developer, which was always the most difficult part.

    The first line of support from IBM can also be improved. When we reached out to IBM to explain the problem that we had, we always had to go through a lot of hurdles. It was really not easy to get to the specialists that we needed. Dealing with the first-line support from IBM was always a very difficult thing. We had more experience, and we knew a lot more about the product than their first-line support did, and that's a really bad sign. 

    So, the support and being able to extend it only by code are the main areas of improvement.

    Buyer's Guide
    IBM Datacap
    July 2022
    Learn what your peers think about IBM Datacap. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: July 2022.
    621,327 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I started working with Datacap in 2019, and I've worked with it all the way until the end of last year. So, it has been two to three years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    It is reliable, and its performance is also really good. Its reliability was good, and we didn't encounter many software bugs. We did encounter a few, and we reported them to IBM. They then made the resolution a part of their next fixes, which is just life in the software industry, but overall, we had a very positive experience with performance and reliability.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    Its scalability was good. In terms of scalability, if you want to make your solution even faster, it is quite easy to just add a new rule runner server, which basically is the server that does the hard processing. So, if you ever notice that you have a large amount of documents and your processing time is increasing, you can always just set up and deploy an additional server.

    In terms of its users, at the customer side, we had approximately 15 to 20 users in total, and their roles were compliance officers. Most of them were working in compliance, and they were working on sanctions checking. The idea was if we found anything suspicious on the document, such as goods coming or going to Russia in this current period, we should be able to flag that out. It was more of compliance activity. It was initially targeted for about 5 to 10 users, and then some other business units inside the organization also wanted to do the same thing and use it. So, its growth inside the organization was twice more than what we expected, but we also catered for that in the infrastructure. After that, they didn't add more users.

    How are customer service and support?

    Their documentation is relatively extensive. If you're deploying the solution, you find pretty much everything you need. 

    The only hiccup was really with the first-line support. Every time you contact IBM support, you have to go through the first-line support. You can't just jump forward and go to the higher-level support. Their first-level support was a very big area of improvement. Their support is based in India, and we were working in a different time zone. We were also working in a different language. We were working in the German language and the Dutch language, and we needed support in those languages, but we were unable to get support in those languages. Their support is only in English, which is not ideal from a customer perspective. It seems that IBM was struggling a lot to find capable support engineers in the Europe region, and they basically outsourced the entire first-line support to India. Everybody in the world has to contact India, which is a problem, and we, as a customer, did not like that at all. We had bad experiences with that.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We were using a competitor product called Kofax. We tried out Datacap because IBM came to us with the promise that they've got the Trade Finance Accelerator plugin. This plugin was specifically for our use case because we needed to do compliance checks and sanctions checks. That was something that Kofax did not have. So, we basically gave it a try. We wanted to see if we can revolve our business process around Datacap instead of Kofax. This plugin was very attractive for our management, and that's how they got in.

    How was the initial setup?

    When it came to deploying the actual Datacap solution itself, we carried out an on-premises deployment. I was responsible for the technical deployment. We deployed it on our own virtual servers on our own virtualized infrastructure. We deployed several servers and set up a clustered configuration for the data. We also set up a clustered configuration for the front end for data, which is a product called IBM Content Navigator. So, we had a cluster setup for the front and the back end. Rolling it out from the start to the finish took us about a month. 

    After that was completed, we reached out to IBM to give us a sample application for trade finance, and this is where they gave us a special plugin module called the Trade Finance Accelerator for IBM Datacap. That's where we spent most of our time. We were just deploying changes to the Trade Finance Accelerator module. So, that's where we spent the bulk of our time after the infrastructure and the core software were built.

    What about the implementation team?

    I was responsible for the technical deployment. For the initial deployment without the coding part, we needed about three people in total. We had a lead technical consultant, which was me, and then we had two additional people to pick up other small activities, deployment run books, etc. It took a month in total to deploy it from zero.

    What was our ROI?

    It was actually a lot more expensive than our previous solution Kofax, but at the same time, because we saved so much development effort with the Trade Finance Accelerator plugin, we thought that we could offset those development costs with the additional licensing costs. That was the idea, and a second step from there was to say that we're going to do the cloud migration sometime soon. So, this user value unit and processor value unit licensing will fall away, and it will become a lot cheaper. That was the idea. So, we saved a bit of money with the development costs. We were going to go to the cloud anyway. Therefore, we didn't really mind the extra costs in the interim.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    We were using the User Value Unit licensing, which means we get charged per active user of the system, and if I'm not mistaken, we also had it for the rule runner service. They had a PVU license model, which is a processor value unit. For each process that we have in our system, we pay a certain amount of money. We found the pricing to be quite steep. It was really an expensive solution in comparison to Kofax, which had a different licensing model and was actually cheaper overall because they charge per page and not per user and per process. 

    What other advice do I have?

    I've got a few ideas there. When running such a project, a key success factor is to get the IBM consulting division in on your project. They call them global consulting services, and they need to be there from the beginning because when they are on the project, they will always help within IBM to assist with any question. So, as long as you have IBM consulting on board in the initial phases of your project, you'll have a very successful rollout and implementation. There are obviously consulting costs, but you must have them on board to be successful. 

    It is also very important to maintain this contact. There is another department of IBM called the IBM Lab Services. You should keep in touch with them as well because they're the ones who are more interested in the long-term usage of the product in terms of how the customers use it and how they can improve. If one keeps contact with them, which I did in my role, I was able to always have direct access to specialists and key decision-makers, who are actually changing the product and updating the product landscape. 

    So, I would advise other customers to have a very close working relationship with IBM when implementing the product. Don't be a lone wolf, and don't try and implement it on your own without the necessary support from IBM because then the project will fail. That's just the reality of the situation. You need a bit of guidance, and you need IBM to hold your hands during the first part of the project. As long as you keep that in mind, it can be a very successful project.

    I would rate it a seven out of 10. I wouldn't go all the way up to eight or nine because the long-term support was one of the worst things that we had to deal with.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: partner
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    PeerSpot user
    Senior Application Developer at Unicef
    Real User
    Top 20
    Reasonably priced with good scanning and helpful support
    Pros and Cons
    • "I can have all scanners accessible from my end."
    • "The IBM Datacap site actually is on the newer inside. They will give it as a plugin only."

    What is our primary use case?

    We use IBM Datacap for data compaction on several different document types. Users can scan the documents and they can upload them to the backend repository where they're stored. 

    There are a least seven types of applications. For example, one of our clients is the department of human services in Hawaii. They need to know when someone qualifies for financial assistance if they are elderly, pregnant, etc.

    Now I handle data capture, and IBM Datacap is part of my current project. They're using Datacap as a scanner portal for connecting and scanning the data capture, setting up indexes, etc.

    My product is an online eligibility system. The user can check their eligibility by filling out that application form. They can fill out that application and enter the necessary information, including the supporting documents like adoption documents, degree verification, etc. 

    They upload the requirements to show they are eligible for renewal. Datacap helps them select the application type, and there is a barcode index form. Datacap performs a step-by-step classification and verification process. It will go through each classification step and verify the data. In the end, it exports the data to the correct repository. Various types of documents are there, so the user can select one and upload it to the document index. All documents will be stored in that data system. We can use them anywhere.

    What is most valuable?

    Datacap's content navigator, which is the UA for end-users, is great. The IBM content navigator is highly developed with many features. We can customize it by adding different features. When someone scans something we can see who scanned it and get notifications. 

    Our technical team has access to the serial CRMS so they can check to see if there are any applications. Once they hand it to the Datacap portal, they can continue the application using feedback CRMS to send it. On the Datacap side, multiple people we can view that, and we can set the validation test.

    We can scan thousands of documents. Our on-site team has set up a UIT system, and you can scan tons of documents fast. There is also a system that captures whatever data we enter. Datacap automatically scans why we write with pen and paper and captures everything. We also get reports on the scanned and exported data that is loaded into the system. 

    Datacap's performance has improved over the years. It's fast even with a hardware printer and scanner. It only takes seconds to capture a document, so we can process thousands of documents quickly. 

    I can have all scanners accessible from my end. I can verify whether the scanners are up to them on whether roles have been added to them or not.

    We can see the panel for application-type examples. There are input fields where users can enter their input data. The same data will be added to the database easily. That is integrating with the Oracle database to store content, including PDFs. Everything fits.

    There are queues and we can get everything from the database. There's a manual maintenance tool that we can use for batch deletion or reporting. We can put them into Excel. I've written automation scripts for this and I can upload them. It's not robot process automation we are using. Rather, it's the framework automation we are using. We work on a source tool, which is based on tech automation technology.

    What needs improvement?

    The IBM Datacap site actually is on the newer inside. They will give it as a plugin only. They'll be giving it as a package completely, however, the plugin for the ICN, we can deploy on the ICN desktop. The ICN desktop is a UA. One is an admin and one is a normal user. There's a user interface when we log into that admin desktop. We can see and deploy all these kinds of plugins for data as well. We can deploy new features and all for the backend installations. Right now, we can just keep the backup, and the existing data, and we can reuse the newer version and we can reinstall it.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have three and a half years of experience on Datacap, excluding my training on POD.   

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    There are issues with stability. I haven't seen much, however, there was a time when we scanned and, after scanning, sent it to the repository we are integrated with. Sometimes the date is wrong. By the time we were sending a default time, we had a discussion with the client there were customizations needed.

    The document code does not extend. I have to rewrite the code again.

    However, one database supports another. 

    How are customer service and support?

    I've met the PML team. I met the IBM team. I worked with IBM and have no trouble pinging them when I have questions. If the code is not supporting the customization when I'm doing it, I can reach out

    The final system there, the Datacap system is sending all documents into file. However, when export is happening, there is sometimes a format issue. We reached out and they had released a new version, we got an encryption issue with the PDF. They helped us through it. Eventually, we got it fixed. I got what I needed out of support. 

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    I previously worked with content management solutions, however, I didn't deal with scanning products. Now, I'm working on Datacap. I didn't have much chance to work on Captiva or Kofax as I was working on multiple projects as the final developer.

    How was the initial setup?

    Datacap is not that difficult to set up, however, there are some limitations. For example, it's supposed to only be used with Windows. It'll not support a Linux platform and has been built on top of .Net technologies. For C#, we have to wait for some code, for example. The code itself is limited. Basically, I'm a Java developer. The finance support completely Java. .Net has been somewhere else. I never see any development with technology using .Net, yet Datacap is completely on top of .Net only .Net and C# files. We have tried the code in that way only.

    The scope is not up to that mark. Coming in the future, however, there may be the open-source side.

    In terms of deployment, for us, the planning was already done in a minor version only, with completely new software. We planned it for three months with more than one month of buffer on offer. It has been a long process, however, otherwise, you can complete it, including unit testing, within three months.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    The solution comes as a part of a bundle package. Licensing is hard to calculate.  There's no real difference between the cloud and on-prem. The Kubernetes OpenShift to cloud pack is a different process. 

    It is expensive only due to the fact that when we take it with FileNet, it is expensive. 

    What other advice do I have?

    I'm a customer.

    So far, we are exclusively using Datacap on the cloud. The infrastructure team handles that from their end. Previously we had version 9.053 installed in an on-premises environment. Since then, we have installed it on the Nutanix cloud, However, the process is still ongoing. They have only installed it on VMs only, but they provide me access for development and editing.

    I do not yet have approval for the SIT. I'm doing the all activities in the development enrollment. As I understand it, the IBM BAW is completely cloud-backed automation and there is an ES OpenShift to pack also. Now, we are maintaining these files along with the Datacap.

    I can suggest to potential users to try it. Datacap as compared to other products is a cheaper product. The stability and all the features are great. The user-friendly features look good and you have less customization. They have given us almost 80% of the features we need along with IBM Datacap.

    I'd rate the solution eight out of ten.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    PeerSpot user
    Buyer's Guide
    IBM Datacap
    July 2022
    Learn what your peers think about IBM Datacap. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: July 2022.
    621,327 professionals have used our research since 2012.
    PeerSpot user
    Sr. Business Analyst at a financial services firm with 10,001+ employees
    Real User
    Useful exacting, beneficial QR code reading, but better Arabic language support needed
    Pros and Cons
    • "There's something that's very unique about IBM DataCap. It provides me with a good solution for extracting, reading the QR codes, and scanning them. In this stage, we are working in a UIT phase before implementing this protocol in all our branches. From my initial observation, IBM DataCap is good, it is not working too fast, but in a good manner for us."
    • "Our main language in Egypt is Arabic, and IBM DataCap does not support it perfectly. All our documentation is in Arabic. It's not English or any other language. However, we have overcome this problem by using QR codes in the document to extract the data from it. They should have better support for Arabic."

    What is our primary use case?

    We use IBM DataCap for capturing data from banking forms. We use this data that has been extracted from customer documents   for indexing, and classification for a each customer ,  IBM DataCap  under testing for now . I recently did a course related to IBM DataCap one year ago.

    In banking we are  working for clients and we have our relationship with them that must be documented that is why We use IBM DataCap in order to identify these documents and extract all mandtory information which we call the metadata. This metadata could be used in the searching analytic phase to read the type of this document. We use IBM DataCap to read the QR code, that will be generated upon the processing of the document from the customer. Then we scan it then we archive these documents according to the extracted metadata  by IBM DataCap

    We are using other solutions in conjunction with IBM DataCap to fulfill our use cases, such as IBM FileNet for classification and retrieval. In the warehouse, we use a solution called FileTrail which have a direct integration point with IBM FileNet "our repository ".

    How has it helped my organization?

    IBM DataCap makes it easier for the end-user to retrieve all documents related to our customers in a very simple way by using the defined metadata.


    Firstly, we define the required data which will be extracted and included in the QR code, these data called metadata or attributes, these attributes are used for identifying each document. 

    Then we define each document with it is name and defining the QR code location to be defined by  DataCap  during the scanning process 

    What is most valuable?

    There's something that's very unique about IBM DataCap. It provides me with a good solution for extracting, reading the QR codes, and scanning them. Currently we are  working in a UAT phase then we will implemente  this solution in all our branches. From my initial observation, IBM DataCap is good, it is not working too fast, but in a good manner for us so far.

    I will need some more time to estimate correctly the benefits or shortcomings of the solution after we do the implementation in a  large number of our branches.

    Overall this solution is good if you are using English as default language.

    What needs improvement?

    Our main language in Egypt is Arabic, and IBM DataCap does not support it perfectly. All our documentation is in Arabic. It's not English or any other language. However, we have overcome this problem by using QR codes in the document to extract the data from it. So i think that they should have better support for Arabic.

    It is important to have the solution support Arabic, not only supporting Arabic in the QR code but reading it by scanning it from the QR code, and scanned documents that are computerized. The Arabic needs to be enhanced because not all systems support QR code generations. We can use IBM DataCap to read, scan, and extract data from it, but it will be difficult. For example, if you have some documents without a QR code and you need something to oversee all these documents, locate certain parts of the document, and extract the data to use in indexing and retrieval, it will be hard. It's not accurate at all. We will be obligated to use IBM DataCap in a certain manner. This manner means I have a QR code printed on the document, otherwise, it will be hard for me to use IBM DataCap.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using IBM DataCap for approximately four years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    We are using labs prepared for IBM DataCap, but when you spread this portal over branches and we have a lot of branches in Egypt, more than 500 branches, and different areas in Egypt and we will handle a large number of documents that will be scanned at the same time and we will test the strength of this solution over time. Since we have been using the solution it has been working well so far.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    As per our plan the  expected number users of this solution are approximately 3,000. They are not technical users they will use the  solution interface during  scaning process , such as customer service,operations, reception, and tellers.

    How are customer service and support?

    We didn't face a very crucial issue or something to refer back to the technical support team, except for improving the Arabic support and this was two years ago. We are using some other tools to bypass our issue.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We did not use another solution previously.

    How was the initial setup?

    We bought IBM DataCap then and we have had training using it. After training, we were working on preparing all servers,like UAT servers, and SIT server. And for me as a business analyst, I sat down with all the stakeholders and attempt to understand their needs and requirements to build the required structure and integration between IBM DataCap and the interface which will be used by the end-user. The integration between the interface and backend after reading, scanning, and verifying the document by IBM DataCap, the documents which will be transformed and transferred to IBM Filenet. So far we are working with our stakeholders at the  UAT phase and after receiving  the required confirmations , we'll be able to move to production.

    The time it took us to implement IBM DataCap was approximately two years. However, this is not a normal situation. We had many elements that caused the delay, such as solution negotiation and contracting also Corna Virus Quarantine.

    What about the implementation team?

    We are using a vendor. And they need to gain more experience. But that doesn't mean that they are not good.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    In Egypt, we have exchange rates that changes year to year, and currently, we're facing an increase in the exchange rate between our Egyptian pound and US dollars. Since we have been using IBM DataCap two years ago i think that we had a good price, it might not be  expensive. However, I cannot say now if it is expensive or not because of the exchange rate. Additionally, I don't have the data of other competitors and I don't know the prices.

    The Arabic OCR in IBM DataCap is not accurate forcing us to use other solutions that have better Arabic OCR which is an additional cost.

    What other advice do I have?

    I'm a business analyst and we are working on digital transformation projects, we have a lot of solutions related to IBM.

    I would recommend this solution. 

    I rate IBM DataCap a seven out of ten.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    PeerSpot user
    Software Development Senior Specialist at a tech services company with 10,001+ employees
    Real User
    Good integration with FileNet and web services, but the user interface could be better
    Pros and Cons
    • "I like Datacap's integration with FileNet because financial companies use that export. The second part is web services integration, which is effortless to implement."
    • "We have page requirements where some values must be copied on each page. For example, say I need to scan a bunch of documents, and the name will be a field on every page. We don't have a default functionality in Datacap to copy the field value on the first page to all the pages. That feature would make the documents easy to prepare."

    What is our primary use case?

    I have worked on many projects at this company. The first project was primarily web services. They have a separate service, so we need to validate the account number. Datacap is a scanning tool. If a person enters their account number, that will be validated by a separate server, and we use web services to validate that. Once validated, it'll connect to another server to fetch that account number based on the customer's name. We do all the validations via web services. 

    We are slowly moving into the cloud, but they are still using some mainframe technology. We plan to move all applications into the cloud in 2022. First, we'll do all our development on-premises then move to the cloud. IBM has its container environment called CP4BA, so we'll use that to migrate our development applications.

    How has it helped my organization?

    Datacap's main advantage for the user is the validation part and its ability to implement any kind of page. Say, for example, we have a scenario where a financial company is processing many loan documents. When they scan a page through our application, it'll automatically detect based on the page identification. Datacap matches the text according to the application settings, and it works quickly.

    What is most valuable?

    I like Datacap's integration with FileNet because financial companies use that export. The second part is web services integration, which is effortless to implement. 

    We don't have any issues with web services integration or any email format, whether it's tape images, PDF, or even Excel, so we can implement those in our applications. Recently, we've been using XML files to validate the account number through web service. We can edit and implement those XML files in our application.

    What needs improvement?

    IBM could improve Datacap's navigator. The company implemented Taskmaster starting in version 8.0. We're using the Taskmaster web interface, and our main issue is the navigators, especially in the new CP4BA environment. The application is slow, so we face issues with the navigator and the new plugin. 

    There are also some bugs in the features they added in 9.1.7, and the fixes they applied are still not working, so IBM still hasn't rectified some issues. The navigator plugin makes the application a little heavier. That needs to be improved.

    The financial team I'm working with always compares their old application with our new one. They have been using that application for the last 15 to 20 years, and they're not happy with the UI. They think the layout isn't user-friendly. From a user perspective, I would like all the buttons to be easily labeled.

    I've been working on Datacap for the last 11 years, and I haven't seen any massive changes aside from the navigator plugin and the mobile application. However, IBM needs to make many small changes to keep this scanning solution up to date.

    We have page requirements where some values must be copied on each page. For example, say I need to scan a bunch of documents, and the name will be a field on every page. We don't have a default functionality in Datacap to copy the field value on the first page to all the pages. That feature would make the documents easy to prepare.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I've been working on IBM tools for the last 11 years. Mostly, I work on the enterprise management tool for FileNet called Enterprise Content Management. In terms of scanning solutions, I worked on Datacap and GoFax. One of my current clients is a financial services company from the United States, so I'm working in the financial sector using IBM tools. I mainly handle the IBM Datacap part.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Datacap's navigator is a little heavy. We have two configurations: one on the Taskmaster web interface and another on the navigator site. I feel the Taskmaster web configurations are more straightforward than the navigator. Sometimes the changes are not refreshed, it's slow, or it requires a user-ready password to log in. Many configurations are necessary, but Taskmaster web is a simple, easy, lightweight application where you can make all the changes.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    You can have a stable environment with different roles on a server and many Taskmaster servers, so Datacap is scalable.  

    How are customer service and support?

    IBM's Problem Management Report team isn't that effective. Sometimes we don't know stuff, or the end-users ask for more information about whether something is possible or not. We expect a high level of information from the PMR team, and I feel they don't have it. They're not helpful at all in some cases.

    They take a lot of time for new things, too. For example, if I ask for a change, they have to check with the support team to see if it is required. It can take two to three weeks to escalate to a higher PMR level.

    How was the initial setup?

    There are two ways to deploy Datacap. If you have multiple servers, we can use the Datacap deployment server, a new service IBM provides. You can also deploy it the traditional way, where we zip the file, add it to the main server, map it with our application manager, and update the XML file where all the application names are listed. 

    Once we successfully authenticate with the database—Oracle, Access DB, etc.—we connect with the Datacap studio to test that the application is working fine. We later map the application inside the Datacap navigator. 

    After that, we add a repository with Datacap that includes all the details using the LDAP authentication or a normal username and ID, and we create a new desktop. If there's an existing desktop, we export and import the desktop on the same server, add the repository inside the desktop's menu, configure all the menus. Finally, we can start with our application.

    What about the implementation team?

    I work with an onsite architect, but I'm the only developer here, so I'm primarily handling the deployment process.

    What other advice do I have?

    I rate IBM Datacap seven out of 10. This tool can be easily integrated with the Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, or IBM cloud. In addition, they have a mobile app you can use from iPhone or Android to scan your documents and upload them to your repository without any user intervention. This is all straightforward from a user perspective. Also, there is less need for customization from a technical point of view. It has all these out-of-the-box actions that can be used in your applications to make them more mature.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    Joao Benevides - PeerSpot reviewer
    ECM at PDM FC
    Real User
    We can add custom actions and automate plenty of processes, but they should do deeper testing of the product before releasing it
    Pros and Cons
    • "It is very easy to develop this software. It is low code, and if you can't find the things you need on it, you can develop custom actions with more complex code underneath. They sync well, which is very useful for automating a lot of processes. It is a really valuable feature for the clients because we can ingest information and automate plenty of processes for them. The operators don't have to waste that much time on tasks. With Datacap, they can be automated."
    • "I've faced some bugs or issues. They should do deeper testing of the product before releasing it because some of the bugs that I found were a bit simple. I understand that it is a massive product, and some of the functionalities can get overlooked."

    What is our primary use case?

    Datacap is basically used to ingest the documentation of the clients, either from paper through scanners or through emails. In most scenarios, we either do scanning or consume email folders. It has connectors to read emails.

    Its version depends a lot on the client and the project. I've been using version 9.1.6, and some clients have been upgrading to the latest version 9.1.9.

    In terms of deployment, IBM has a solution on the cloud, but the solution I deploy is on-prem.

    How has it helped my organization?

    We recently did a Datacap implementation for a client, and we used its functionalities to do a separation of the documents and automatically capture some fields from the documents that the client wanted to extract. Before that, the software they were using wasn't optimized to do that. They were manually doing the separation of the documents and capturing the values of the fields. With Datacap, the process is automated, and they can now just validate if the captured data is correct and if the separation is correct. After it is implemented for some time, it creates a database. So, it separates automatically more over time, and the program in the background validates everything. For most batches, the operators don't waste much time on this process. Previously, they used to waste plenty of time separating the documents manually. After that, they had to write the data from the documents. The data was then sent to another platform, such as FileNet, for further use by another department. 

    What is most valuable?

    It is very easy to develop this software. It is low code, and if you can't find the things you need on it, you can develop custom actions with more complex code underneath. They sync well, which is very useful for automating a lot of processes. It is a really valuable feature for the clients because we can ingest information and automate plenty of processes for them. The operators don't have to waste that much time on tasks. With Datacap, they can be automated.

    What needs improvement?

    I've faced some bugs or issues. They should do deeper testing of the product before releasing it because some of the bugs that I found were a bit simple. I understand that it is a massive product, and some of the functionalities can get overlooked.

    Their platform for reporting bugs and issues works. Sometimes, it takes them too long to solve the issue, but eventually, they do. So far, every issue that I've found in reporting has been resolved, but their support can be improved in terms of resolving the issues faster.

    In terms of additional features, I've been following the roadmap they have, and so far, it has been good.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    As a developer, I've been using it for over two years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    The software always depends on the infrastructure of the clients because it's very network-based. If you follow all the recommendations that it requires, it is great. It works properly, and the performance is more than okay. If you have limitations in the infrastructure or network, it can be a bit tricky, but you can always find workarounds to solve the issues.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    It is very easy to scale the solution for our clients. If you want to upgrade the product on processing, it's easy. You just have to check the license requirements and the cost because the cost increases if you want to increase the servers, specifications, and processing power, but it's very easy to scale the software.

    How are customer service and support?

    I faced some issues, and sometimes, they take a bit too long to solve them. When you open a ticket for support, they do the initial testing to test the error on their side. After that, they send the error to the development team on their side. Sometimes, this process can take a while. There are several levels of priority when you open a ticket, but they could improve a bit in terms of how fast they work. I had some unpleasant talks with their first line of support.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    I started with Datacap right away.

    How was the initial setup?

    It is now very easy for me. For someone who is starting with the product, they have a manual, and it can be very straightforward if no issue occurs. If there are some issues, it can be a bit complex to solve when you're doing the setup. Because I already have a massive experience with the setup of the environment, it's quite easy. Even when I find errors, I manage to solve them quickly.

    What about the implementation team?

    I do the implementation for the clients. In terms of maintenance, in the last few updates, they have been implementing some tools for it to be easier to monitor. It basically depends a lot on the implementation and the functions. It depends on the capability that a client wants, such as if they want something more robust or something with easier alerts when anything aborts or an error occurs. So, it basically depends on how much the client is willing to pay for a more robust solution. In terms of Datacap, you can set up more on the development side to monitor everything. You have a tool page if you don't want to automate monitoring for everything.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    It varies, and it depends on the client's requirements and negotiations. Nowadays, Datacap is also included in the IBM Cloud Pak for Business Automation. 

    What other advice do I have?

    Datacap can be very robust. It depends on the solutions that the client is using beforehand. Of course, if you're changing platforms, you're going to have an initial shock because it has different ways of working, but in the long run, it's a good solution to be implemented. It can automate plenty of processes, but you have to be willing to invest in it.

    I would rate it a seven out of ten.

    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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    PeerSpot user
    Manager of Products and Solutions at Open Connections
    Real User
    Automated data capture and extraction software that's scalable and stable
    Pros and Cons
    • "Very scalable and stable data capture and extraction solution that's very simple to install."
    • "What could be improved in IBM Datacap from a technical perspective is having everything together all in one place, rather than having several different interfaces. The addition of cloud-based OCR technology would also make this solution better. There's also room for improvement for their technical support."

    What is our primary use case?

    IBM Datacap is used for capturing documents. Here's a use case: invoices come into an organization and the organization wants to get details from the invoices. They want to know where it came from, the date of the invoice, and the value of the invoice. They also want to know if there's a purchase order number on it, and if there are any line items on the invoice.

    IBM Datacap will extract the information from those invoices, then pass the information into their line of business environment. It's a capture and extraction toolkit.

    How has it helped my organization?

    We implement and support solutions built on Datacap for our customers.

    What needs improvement?

    What could be improved in IBM Datacap from a technical perspective is having all configuration interfaces together in one place, rather than having several different configuration interfaces. For example: there is an interface for configuring background tasks, then a different interface for configuring how the application actually works, then there's a third interface for configuring user access. It would be nice to have everything in one place instead of needing to use different interfaces.

    In the next release of IBM Datacap, I'd like the ability to leverage cloud-based OCR technologies or cloud-based OCR engines, such as Google Vision. There's the ability to be able to build things yourself, so as a partner, we could build those integrations, but it is possible that we would build something only to find later that it has been built by someone else. 

    For how long have I used the solution?

    As a business, we were the first Datacap partner in Europe, and that was before the acquisition by IBM. I started with Open Connections originally in 2008 and have been working with IBM Datacap since 2008.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Solutions built on IBM Datacap tend to be very stable and this is maintained by regular updates from IBM. 

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    IBM Datacap was designed to be very scalable, e.g. you could have one server running background tasks, and individual threads can be configured for this purpose. Threads can be added as operational needs dictate, scaling "vertically". If the business needs dictate, additional servers can be added. Examples of background tasks are document ingesting from a mailbox, data extraction from documents or export of documents and data to the line-of-business system. 

    How are customer service and support?

    In the past, technical support left a lot to be desired, but  IBM has listened and responded and our recent experience has been very favourable. On a scale of one to five, with five being the highest and one being the lowest, I'm scoring support a four out of five.

    How would you rate customer service and support?

    Positive

    How was the initial setup?

    The complexity of initial setup depends very much on the architecture and use case for individual customers. A simple use case (for example, data extraction from a fixed form) can see a solution up and running in a few days, but more complex use cases with several document types and unstructured data can take longer to implement.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    There are several options for the licensing and pricing of IBM Datacap. It's possible to purchase it as part of a wider portfolio of products called CloudPak for Business Automation, or on subscription from IBM, or you can purchase the licenses outright and just pay an annual maintenance fee. 

    Pricing is very competitive. 

    What other advice do I have?

    We have customers on various versions of IBM Datacap. The oldest version that we have customers using is version 8.1, which went out of support in 2018. We have customers on many subsequent versions up to the latest one.

    We're an IBM business partner, so we implement and support IBM Datacap solutions for our customers, and sometimes we do it on behalf of IBM. Most of our deployments are on-premises, but more recently, we have seen that customers want to move to the cloud. IBM Datacap is not cloud-native but it can run in the Cloud, whether that be AWS, Azure or a customer's private cloud. 

    IBM Datacap has built-in tooling which maintains deployed applications, so there's typically very little housekeeping once a system goes live.

    The advice I would give to others looking to implement a solution built on IBM Datacap is, "Datacap will help you to streamline and automate your document driven capture processes, saving time and effort on manual, error-prone tasks.

    My rating for IBM Datacap is eight out of ten, but if IBM were to improve the solution by having just one administration interface and add access to cloud-based OCR technology, then I would rate it nine.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: IBM Business Partner
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    Manager - Software Development at a transportation company with 1,001-5,000 employees
    Real User
    It automatically detects the document based on a given template, but the scans sometimes come out distorted
    Pros and Cons
    • "While we are doing indexing, we tag the document type. It's programmed inside of Datacap to automatically detect the document based on a given template. It auto-indexes that document, which means that it automatically tags the correct document type to the scanned document."
    • "When I scan a document in Datacap that has a watermark or the document is a little distorted, the image output is poor. It either becomes completely black, or there is so much distortion that we cannot read the numbers or the addresses mentioned in the POD. When we scan a document, we expect the output to be at least 95 percent accurate."

    What is our primary use case?

    We use Datacap for scanning Proof of Delivery and Proof of Pickup from our delivery agents and drivers. We have a defined workflow in Datacap, and we process these documents into our imaging system and PODs or POPs for paying the drivers and agents for deliveries.

    How has it helped my organization?

    Datacap provides remote users with the ability to scan documents using some plugins. Internal customers can scan their documents and define their workflows, like where the document needs to be sent and how it needs to be indexed. That is one thing I like about Datacap. Several documents get scanned during the day, and they come from agents, drivers, internal workers, and customers. 

    While we are doing indexing, we tag the document type. It's programmed inside of Datacap to automatically detect the document based on a given template. It auto-indexes that document, which means that it automatically tags the correct document type to the scanned document.

    What is most valuable?

    Datacap's workflows are helpful. 

    What needs improvement?

    When I scan a document in Datacap that has a watermark or the document is a little distorted, the image output is poor. It either becomes completely black, or there is so much distortion that we cannot read the numbers or the addresses mentioned in the POD. When we scan a document, we expect the output to be at least 95 percent accurate. If IBM could work on that particular thing, I think it would be fantastic.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I've been using Datacap for around 10 years now.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    I have seen complaints on the older version, but we haven't had any issues with the new version so far. However, it's only been a week since we did the upgrade. Versions 9.1.4 had performance issues. For example, it used to take an hour to complete a batch job.  

    How are customer service and support?

    IBM support is good. We open a ticket on the forums, and our questions are answered in a couple of days. So I wouldn't say it's bad.

    How was the initial setup?

    I wasn't around when Datacap was deployed, but they have done two upgrades since I joined the company. The process was tedious. We needed to upgrade the server and the client. If it automatically upgraded the client when we updated the server, that would be fantastic. 

    When we updated the client, we lost all our settings, like the shortcuts and preferences. Those settings go into an XML file or somewhere. The upgraded client should retain that file. It should not be completely deleted. The user has to set it up from scratch, which is frustrating.

    What other advice do I have?

    I would rate IBM Datacap seven out of 10. If you're implementing Datacap, you need to understand the solution from end to end. In other words, you need to know how the server connects to the client. If you think there is a clear delineation between the server and client, you'd be wrong. 

    There is a lot of dependency between these two, and you need to make sure the configuration XMLs are in place before you implement anything. You should also ask the Datacap technical support team about every attribute they're going to touch. Otherwise, it's going to be a nightmare.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    Krishna Kantiwal - PeerSpot reviewer
    Solutions Architect at a tech services company with 10,001+ employees
    Real User
    Data imaging solution that increases efficiencies by reducing manual capture of information
    Pros and Cons
    • "The feedback from our clients that this solution has increased their efficiency and their turnaround time on opening any account for end users, thus attracting more customers."
    • "Recognition between certain numbers and letters could be improved. Sometimes this solution misreads five with an "S" for Singapore."

    What is our primary use case?

    We support clients who make use of IBM Datacap as an imaging solution where they scan forms and capture information in the system. Our clients have significantly improved efficiencies when opening accounts for end users. This solution has also helped in eliminating the manual process of getting documents signed and approved. 

    How has it helped my organization?

    The feedback from our clients that this solution has increased their efficiency and their turnaround time on opening any account for end users, thus attracting more customers.

    What is most valuable?

    The best features of this solution include auto-indexing. Using optical character recognition, it recognizes what is contained in a scanned document and indexes the information. There is no need for manual intervention.

    What needs improvement?

    Recognition between certain numbers and letters could be improved. Sometimes this solution misreads five with an "S" for Singapore.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have used this solution for six years. 

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    The latest version of Datacap is very stable. Older versions of the solution used to get stuck but the overall stability and performance of the solution has been improved with version 9.1.7. 

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    This is a scalable solution. We are able to add additional Rulerunner servers if our business users or user base increases. We are able to have multiple nodes for the front-end and for the Content Navigator. We have total of 3,000 users across the United States of America.

    How are customer service and support?

    The technical support from IBM is good. I would rate it an eight out of ten. 
    There is sometimes a delay in getting support from the IBM team and we receive inadequate answers. If it is registered as a critical issue, we receive a response from IBM after one day which can cause our clients to lose business. 

    How would you rate customer service and support?

    Positive

    How was the initial setup?

    If only one person was working on the deployment of this solution, it would take one to two weeks. 

    The first step in setting up this solution is to install all the prerequisite software from IBM. Once installed, we run the installer on Rulerunner servers and on Taskmaster servers. We then install the IBM Content Navigator for use in the front-end followed by creating the default desktops of IBM Datacap.  The final step is to customize the solution using any plugins or any widgets based on our client's requirements.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    IBM could offer more competitive pricing. This would allow them to attain more users. Some of our clients are considering moving to a different solution called Encapture which is similar but offers more competitive pricing. 

    What other advice do I have?

    This solution is mostly used by financial organizations. I would recommend this product to all financial organizations who are looking to improve and eliminate their paper process and improve workflows. It could assist in reducing overall SLAs of manual processes.

    This solution requires maintenance including the updating of patches, which have been released by IBM. Once a month, we complete a recycle of the complete Datacap setup and system maintenance. 

    I would rate this solution a nine out of ten. 

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: partner
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    Buyer's Guide
    Download our free IBM Datacap Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.
    Updated: July 2022
    Buyer's Guide
    Download our free IBM Datacap Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.