This post explores how to extract data from emails, automate backend processes and hence reduce repetitive tasks. It also provides an overview of how to integrate LOB applications using some of the solutions provided on this site.
Automate email with attachments
What options do you have when it comes to automating emails?
Mail Attachment Downloader PRO versions offer a cost-effective solution to automating emails within your enterprise running as a service on a server or in the cloud through Windows Azure (PRO Server version required).
The way this is achieved is using rules for emails. You can setup many rules for the software based on your needs via the UI. These rules can be run for a single email account or across many accounts simultaneously.
Mail Attachment Downloader PRO Server lets you process incoming email on a scheduled frequency in the background 24×7 unattended as a Windows service.
It can recover from system restarts automatically, runs in the background even when no user is logged on and can also data center failure if a hot-standby is used to do so.
It can also be run in the cloud using Windows Azure if needed.
Ordering of rules
The rules defined in the program are run top-down for each email and attachment. The first matching rule is used to download any emails or attachments within the email. If no rules are defined, then all emails will be downloaded.
Phases of rule processing
The software breaks down processing emails into the following phases for each rule as shown.
- Search and Filter phase: For each rule, you can specify which emails or attachments need to be processed by including search filters using the Add button -> Filters
- Extract: For each rule, extract data using the Add button -> Extractions
- Save files: Specify the format and location of where you want any files to be processed to be saved. This could be a temporary location if you do not want this data permanently stored. This could also include a file share (use UNC path).
- Process email and files: This last phase is used to run the automatic processing and includes many different actions as shown below. These can include nested actions for example, unzip a file, decrypt a PDF, extract data and save the information to a database.
Multiple email accounts and filters
Once these are setup for a rule, you can enter many such rules. If you have multiple email accounts to process, you can restrict a rule to apply to only one email account if needed by using an account filter (Add -> Filters -> Account email in the rule).
SDK or API for email integration and processing
We now offer an SDK or plugin API to integrate with your backend systems in a more seamless manner. Contact us for more.
- Archive emails for further processing
- Receive invoice data via email and need to save data for invoice processing
- Save emails and integrate with ERP, EDI, eDMS, eCMS, document management systems or content management systems, eInvoicing invoicing software, Salesforce or medical systems
- Use our PRO SDK (Software Development Kit) to integrate directly with your LOB applications.
- Save emails or Excel or CSV attachments sent via email to an in-house or cloud database for further processing
- Convert emails to PDFs or multi-page TIFF or over 50+ formats or merge/split PDFs including attachments to hand-off to other document management systems or medical software
- Run custom in-house scripts after extracting attachments
- Auto-respond or send email notifications when certain types of emails or attachments arrive and then take other actions
Conclusion: Automate emails, process and integrate applications
We have provided a brief overview of how to automate data from emails within your enterprise using an on-prem service or a cloud-based self-hosted service using Windows Azure using Mail Attachment Downloader PRO.
If you have a specific use-case that is not covered let us know or if you need help integrating your backend systems we may be able to offer consultation services to do so.
Some interesting how-to links and posts for further exploration:
- Save emails to a database or even excel/csv from emails to a database
- Save to multiple folders from multiple accounts using multiple email rules.
- Send emails automatically after downloading files or attachments or body
- Unzip files, Decrypt pdf’s and run script’s
- Extract data and download emails for invoice processing
- Convert email attachments to different formats
- How email rules work in-depth
Contact us if you have any questions, suggestions about the functionality described in this article.