Case Study

A client specializing in retail sales of construction chemicals

Key aspects for capital groups include efficient flow and access to information and documents in the group’s constituent companies. ESOD took up the challenge of developing and deploying an electronic archiving system, and integrating the proprietary solution with SAP R/3 in the capital group operating in the sector of retail sales of construction chemicals. The solution was implemented not only in the Polish companies belonging to the group but also in Germany.  The main objective of the project was to organize the content of corporate documents and reduce the time necessary for finding required information. The multi-layer structure of the enterprise called for the development of a single archive storing all corporate documents, providing simultaneous access to authorized members of staff of the group’s constituent companies. The solution adopted by ESOD was based on the esSCAN application compatible with highly efficient scanners. The application has built-in mechanisms for automatic document tagging and validation of indexes. esSCAN is scalable and incorporates the TCP/IP communication protocol. It has been designed as a Client/Server system. Authorizations are granted both to staff members who enter and view documents.

Representatives of the company believe that document management processes have a high business value. Costs of investment in innovative methods of document organization, distribution and handling, however, are very quickly recoverable. Using documents in the electronic form as a standard practice in the Polish companies belonging to the capital group markedly accelerated their workflow. Printed documents, which used to be scattered throughout the company, became accessible to authorized users of the application at any time. esSOFT successfully reduced the time required for finding desired information. The Electronic Archive eliminates the practice of making multiple copies of a single document. As a result, the company reduced its traditional archive to an absolute minimum.

Client from the banking sector

Initiation of the process of scanning incoming documents requires an in-depth analysis of consequences of the implementation of planned solutions. In order to give an outline of how we routinely handle our Clients’ documents, we are presenting solutions applied by our company in cooperation with a Client operating in the banking sector. The Client has commissioned our company to perform document processing services using the model described below.

The Client makes selected information about contracts and customers available by exporting it to our database. After concluding an agreement and compiling initial documentation on the spot, the Client creates a virtual file. The process ends with the printing of a special form with a document code and description (including a detailed list of all sheets and pages, both scanned and non-scanned, organized by main document types and subtypes). The Client requires very detailed document tagging. Although we do not need such a degree of detail, it is useful for verifying the work of archive staff at the Client’s and in ESOD’s headquarters (down to the level of a single page). Registered documents are placed in dedicated containers and shipped to our company. At the receipt of the containers we verify the delivery and check individual containers.  Each of the operations is recorded electronically (it is also possible to print hard-copy confirmations from the same system). The deliveries are scheduled on a weekly basis. We have a special vehicle for transporting “sensitive” documents. Transport operations are guarded by appropriately licensed staff. We receive containers from several centres, containing banking documents of a variety of types.

Instead of printing barcoded forms, there is an option of generating and printing barcodes alone, which are then placed directly on corresponding documents (or even using barcode tapes to link appropriate symbols with specific system sets).

There may be situations in which the document processing logic (some of selected document types in the Client’s virtual file are divided with separators during scanning) makes barcode placement on the first page largely pointless. In such cases the detailed procedure, including the planning of special processing modes, can be closely matched to the Client’s specific needs.

The solution outlined above eliminates indexing, as all data are entered in the database at the time of signing a contract with the Client. Selected information is forwarded on an ongoing basis to the electronic archive (even if documentation is being prepared). As soon as the barcoded form is printed, the set of hard copy documents is linked to corresponding electronic archive data, allowing automatic assignment of data to images at the time of scanning.

The system is of the “one-to-one” type, however we also use solutions based on the “one-to-many” principle, with a single form corresponding to multiple database records. Scanning is performed once and the resulting scanned images are stored in the system in a single location, though access is granted for multiple records. Since we use our own proprietary software, we are able to plan the processing logic appropriately and tailor all applications accordingly. Our overriding goal is minimization of the number of operations and, therefore, elimination of error-conducive situations.

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