Think back to the last time you had to fill out paperwork. Maybe it was to get your passport renewed, for a mortgage application, opening a bank account, a visit to the doctors office—whatever it was, it probably took longer than it needed to. Either you had to download, print, and sign a PDF, or you had to fill it out by hand. Maybe you had to fax it, or put it in the mail. Paperwork often has a way of making us feel transported back in time, and not in a nice way.
Now consider for a moment what happens to the form once it is completed. Someone had to receive that fax, or open that envelope. Even for a PDF received via email, a human being has to take the information on that form and do something with it. More often than not, “doing something” is manual data-entry, likely into multiple computer systems that don’t talk to each other. It’s someone’s job to do this, and even if the task is straightforward, that person’s time and intelligence could probably be better used for other things. Of course, all of us make mistakes from time to time, and mistakes in paperwork can lead to everything from minor confusion to terrible consequences. No pressure, data entry folks.
This is why people hate paperwork: it’s tedious, time-consuming, old-fashioned, and errors—which are easy to make—can be costly. But we think paperwork is pretty cool, actually. Look at the list of things in the first paragraph. All of them are important, maybe even life changing. Birth certificates and marriage licenses are paperwork. Apartment leases, employment contracts, doctors’ forms—all represent stuff that’s kind of big deal, and just about anything that’s a big deal is going to require paperwork. Because paperwork is simply the process of sharing information with someone so they can help you do something, often something that can create changes in your life.
Paperwork is pretty neat, at least we think so. It’s the process that sucks; the emailing, printing, faxing, mailing, and data entry. Everyone needs the power of paperwork, but everyone’s time—on both ends of the process—would be better spent doing something else.
So, what would it look like for paperwork to feel painless, maybe even… nice?
Our answer to that is Anvil. We aim to solve the tedium of outdated processes, and help workers focus on doing the things they like most about their job. Maybe that’s helping customers manage their money, buy a house, or get the care they need—whatever it is, Anvil helps you focus more on that important work. For consumers, it means fewer forms to fill out, a more secure system for submitting personal information, and most importantly, a faster, better experience. So the important stuff happens, but the ordeal doesn’t.
Anvil helps businesses quickly convert their existing paperwork processes into simple and secure online digital forms. Anvil can help you do this without having to create new workflows, retrain employees, or hire a team of developers. We take your existing forms and automatically generate beautiful web forms that you can share directly with clients. With a simple, Anvil-powered form, customers can fill out a few fields, and businesses get an automatically-completed version of all the necessary PDF forms. Customers can even e-sign and download copies of the forms, all in one place. Businesses get a simple dashboard to track customer progress, manage their workflows, and sync data to all of their systems.
Anvil gets rid of the ‘paper’ in paperwork, and a pretty good chunk of the ‘work’ in paperwork, too. Tasks that used to take hours now happen automatically, and everything can be managed digitally. It means clients have a better experience, and employees spend more time doing the work they were hired to do.
Like we said before, paperwork is really about sharing and transmitting information, and we’re all about rethinking how information travels. We hope to make Anvil the best and easiest way to collect and process the data businesses need to serve their clients, speeding up how business is done, securing how data is transferred, and freeing up time for more meaningful work.
Ultimately, we want to make Anvil accessible to consumers and businesses of all sizes. We envision a future where anyone can move to digital processes, simplify their workflows, and customize their own online client experience. This is just the beginning.
We are looking to bring on a couple of like-minded new hires who are excited to help businesses move confidently into the digital future. If you’re a software engineer, SaaS sales manager, growth marketer, or just an all-around awesome person, we’d love to talk to you. Check out our jobs page or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.