The Australian company WordFlow has proved its sophisticated new smart software has the potential to save the world’s internet users trillions of hours – by ending laborious searches for information.
Now, set for international expansion, WordFlow is well-positioned to be our next big tech success with a product that ensures the world’s internet workers are more efficient, while saving their employers millions of dollars.
Bruce Wren, and his co-founder, Caroline Trotman, have created smart software that converts Adobe Pdf and Microsoft Word documents to an easily searchable Html format. It performs in more than 100 languages, tags critical words on every page; and, boasts superior security to other formats.
“Currently, when you search for the information you are only searching for titles,” said Wren. “Our solution converts these documents to a digital format and makes the information on each and every page easy to find,” he said.
The idea for the software capitalises on the fact that beyond the first slick digital page of most company websites there are policies, procedures, guides, handbooks, regulations; and even legislation, in an old analogue format.
“If you want a piece of information, you have to find the stuff by reading each and every pdf or word document,” said Wren.
WordFlow software digitises 100 pages of information every two minutes. The engine also tags keywords on every page and recognises acronyms, even providing a definition when prompted.
The product is simple to use, seamless and incredibly effective. The software has been successfully tested and has captured new customers in the Australian banking, financial services and government sectors.
“We see ourselves as an enrichment company because we make all that gump usable to the customer by filtering it and making it better,” he said.
Wren said that the WordFlow solution was proving popular to clients because of the substantial cost savings for employers.
His assessment is backed up by a McKinsey Research project, conducted in 2017, which found workers spend a staggering 24% of their day searching and synthesising information.
“An Aussie company, with 100 employees on an average wage of $80,000 – will save around $2 million per annum just by using our conversion software. Nationwide, the figures would be astronomical and worldwide – we’d be talking about savings in the trillions,” said Wren.
Search Engine Optimisation cuts out the Banking Royal Commission
To prove that WordFlow’s software could dramatically increase the number of visitors to a website, Wren successfully ‘hijacked’ visitors to the Banking Royal Commission’s website.
“We simply downloaded the commission’s final report and digitised it – and now we have become the most popular unofficial provider of the Royal Commission’s report,” he said.
“Every page in the Royal Commission Report is now searchable so anyone can seek out any aspect of the findings without having to read the entire document. Lawyers, in particular, enjoy locating an aspect of a case without having to read massive blocks of information. This really is a game-changer for the legal profession,” he said.
And, while visitors to the Royal Commission’s website may now be scant, the NSW Department of Transport had a different experience when it engaged Wordflow to digitise its ‘Future Transport’ documents.
“Despite spending billions on transport infrastructure, the state’s ‘Future Transport’ plans had been downloaded just 200 times, prior to their conversion to HTML. Within weeks of deploying our software, the plans received more than 200,000 hits,” said Trotman.
Regulation nightmares in the Financial Sector
Trotman said that the software was proving particularly popular in the financial services sector where, traditionally, organisations have struggled to incorporate a constant flow of new regulations across their organisation.
On average, there is a new regulation in the world every 9 minutes.
“One big bank Australian bank hired 50-staff, who spent 2-years linking a new regulation to a million pages of policies and procedures. We would have been able to achieve that in just a few months with our software alone,” she said.
With the support and assistance of the Sydney innovation hub, Stone and Chalk, the once-tiny startup has grown rapidly into a company that is valued at $15 million. Now, Trotman and Wren are ready to commence their European expansion, utilising Stone & Chalk’s United Kingdom’s connections.
Trotman believes the future for WordFlow looks bright.
“Adobe PDFs were created 27-years ago, and Microsoft Word was created 36-years ago when systems weren’t digital and there were filing clerks. You don’t have to use a filing clerk anymore, because if you can use Word, you can use WordFlow.
And, the number of documents on the World Wide Web is growing by 1.5 trillion per year, so there are plenty of opportunities out there for us.”