If You Don’t Have Time to do it Right the First Time, When Will You Have Time to do it Over?

Growing up, we learn that it’s important to plan for certain events. We plan for moving, vacations, presentations, and even certain disasters. Planning for an IT project is just as important. I recently saw a statistic that said 62% of all IT projects fail to meet their stated goals, and that more than 50% of all Enterprise Content Management projects fail. This means that it’s more important than ever to make planning your Enterprise Content Management projects top priority.

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Big Enough to Do the Job, Small Enough to Care

Last month we just completed our annual Customer event NEXUS, as usual the event was excellent. During some downtime in the Exhibit Hall I got a chance to chat with one of our ECM Partner Representatives from IBM. During this conversation I was struck by some of the comments made to me, particularly about our customers. During the conversation they said that they have never seen such loyalty from customers towards a company (ImageSource). I can assure you after 43 years in the computer industry & many years competing with IBM, comments like that are far & few between. Over the next couple of days I continued to think more and more about the comments and its true, then I asked myself why, what do we do different that inspires that level of loyalty? The answer was actually pretty simple, “We Care”. In all my presentations I usually close by saying something along the lines, “We are big enough to do the job, but still small enough to care”. From Sales to our Professional Services team and throughout every person in the company we all care.

Bob Garrido
Senior Account Executive
ImageSource, Inc.

Stuck in a Trade Show Whirlwind

This year’s Fall trade show season seemed to blow in and out like a tornado. It is no joke that time flies when you are having fun. We’ve seemed to go from September to December in a blink of a eye. Our whirlwind of a tour started  back when the leaves were just starting to change with multiple local PMI and AIIM events and only picked up speed from there….

For a week we blew into OracleOpen World in San Francisco, CA . If you’ve never attended Oracle OpenWorld, be ready for quite a technology experience. As an Oracle Platinum Partner there is no way we would have missed it!  As a systems integrator for Oracle Middleware, we were eager to help attendees learn how to run more efficient business processes by implementing Oracle IPM and UCM solutions.  There was a lot of interest in our recent implementations of Oracle Webcenter Content 11g. We look forward to going back in 2012 and hope to see you there.

While many of us were at OOW, our ECM expert, John Smetana was attending the AIIM ECM Bootcamp in Minneapolis, MN on October 4.  AIIM members and attendees collaborated on ways to minimize paper and manual processes in core backend activities and discussed better ways to engage social technologies to reach customers.

Next stop landed us in Vegas, Baby! We were a proud exhibitor of the IBM Information on Demand Conference that happens annually at the Mandalay Bay. And we are hoping what you saw there, doesn’t stay there. Take back what you learned from our IBM ECM team to get started on automating processes or to expand your current solution, enterprise-wide. We can wait to get back to IOD in 2012

Next up, we couldn’t have been more excited or proud to host Nexus ’11, our annual ECM Solutions Conference on November 3-4.  With over 28 breakout sessions, world-class Keynote speakers and peer-to-peer networking, this event has become the best education ECM technolgoy event on the West Coast!  Pre-conference training for AIIM certifications and other continuing education credit were provided in the days leading to the conference. Our vendor partners, including Fujitsu, Panasonic, IBM, Kodak and other industry leaders were on hand to show their latest product offerings and answer questions in our Expo Hall. This year’s hot topics included planning your ECMECOSYSTEM™,  Capture solutions from ILINX and Kofax, and implementing mobile and social technologies. You can check out presentations and video from this year’s event or register for what’s in store for Nexus ’13!

And finally, we wrapped up our tour in Sacramento, CA at the Kofax Connect event where we presented with our customer partner, Sacramento County, to share how their are utilizing Kofax KTM to clasify, separate, extract and transform documents.  We were excited to be a part of this valuable event and have the chance to discuss capture solutions with the many Kofax users who attended. If they hold this complimentary seminar again in the Spring you won’t want to miss it.

As frost began to form and the breeze began to slow, it was finally time to click our heels and head home for the holidays. But it won’t be long till we are back out on the road to talk with all of you about implementing your ECMECOSYSTEM and making your information work for you!  Make sure to keep checking our Events calendar to see if we will be blowing into a location near you.

N.E.X.U.S. 2011

Nexus our ECM Solutions Conference is less than a week away. Our pre-conference training starts this Monday, October 31st at the Bellevue Westin Hotel. The  training is kicked off with the AIIM ECM Practitioner Certification, as well as the AIIM Capture Practitioner Certification, Conflict Management Course with James Brown and Oracle ECM 11g.

On November 2nd 2011 at 7:00PM come meet us at the Cypress Lounge in the Bellevue Westin for some light appetizers and cocktails to start the conference off right. Come mix and mingle with people in and out of the ECM industry.

We have a number of great organizations such as Fujitsu, IBM, Oracle, Kofax, AIIM, Kodak and many others which help make this an outstanding conference.

If you want to attend our conference register online http://www.nexusecm.com and don’t’ miss out on this wonderful opportunity!

Learn How to Save Your Business Processes at Nexus

If you’ve got paper, mismanaged files, labor-intense and risk-prone processes that you want to fix, you NEED to come to Nexus! Nexus is a two-day Content Management Solutions conference held in Bellevue. This year’s conference is Nov. 3-4.

As the host of the conference, ImageSource brings industry professionals to Bellevue to discuss a variety of topics from scanning and capture to workflow and business process management to storage and records management. A number of organizations like Oracle, IBM, Fujitsu, Kodak and many others will be exhibiting at the conference.

Also this year, there is a session on the ECM Ecosystem. The ECM Ecosystem is a process that explores your current “As Is” business state, and based on a series of interview and prioritization, allows us to make a recommendation on the future state. You don’t want to miss this session!

This two-day conference has four keynote sessions and more than 25 breakout sessions jam-packed with valuable information. There are three tracks – ECM Fast Track for those just starting their ECM journey, Management for management-specific sessions, and Technical for those looking for a more hands-on experience and a deeper look into the technology.

You also don’t want to miss our fabulous evening event Thursday night at Lucky Strike Lanes. There will be food and bowling and you won’t want to miss this!

For a complete look at the conference, visit http://NexusECM.com. Contact the ImageSource Nexus Team at (360) 943-9273 to secure your spot and get a special $100 off discount code!

We look forward to seeing you there!

Kristina Parma
Account Executive
ImageSource, Inc.

Is Curiosity Enough to Attend a Conference?

On Nov 3rd & 4th there is an industry educational conference coming up called “NEXUS’11  – Where ideas emerge” being held locally in Bellevue WA.  I am often asked by customers what is the value and benefits of attending a conference.  So instead of me listing what I think the benefits and values are I decided to check out what other people said on the web and see others justifying ROI for attending – this is a summary of what was listed on the first few pages:

  • An abundance of new information to be revealed
  • Networking value amongst peers –learn from others in your profession. Share with others your experience and thoughts. Meeting folks who do what you do. Gain insight. Ask questions, get free consultations.
  • Where else can you find so many industry contacts facing the same issues as your organization?
  • Direct conversations with vendors and manufacturers – are there solutions and products that you are not aware of?
  • Conferences demonstrate new ideas, how products work and how other organizations have implemented them into their environments to solve challenges that your organization is experiencing.
  • When else do you have the opportunity to remove yourself from the daily grind and take a more strategic planning viewpoint? Step back and reflect on your job and the bigger picture.
  • Focus on what you will specifically bring back to the organization as payback for the investment – Session Content, tools, technologies, processes, vendor contacts, best practices, training, have a benefits worksheet for the conference. Source: Writing Assistance
  • Justify your Return on Investment – make sure you have session worksheets to summarize what you have learned, what major takeaways you gained from it, action items identified and the estimated impact the idea could make.  What business goals do you have before attending the conference and were they answered by the sessions you attended etc. Source: Gartner Justification Toolkit
  •  Attending a conference provides an opportunity to learn from experts, share ideas with others, and identify new knowledge and techniques. It is a productive experience given the knowledge explosion in the current information-rich era.
  • The information is already “digested’ and given to you in an easy to understand way. Practical examples/ case studies are given and questions clarified.

So hopefully this has increased your curiosity about this conference – take a look and see if you can justify an ROI on attending NEXUS’11. One thing I know for sure – as an attendee and also someone working at this conference every year, the ROI I gain is a HUGE payback for the company and my customers.

Megan Lane
Inside Sales
ImageSource, Inc.

Unsure Economy Holding Your Business Back from ECM?

There’s no question that the US economy is still troubled.  Whispers of a double-dip recession have been heard from Wall Street to Main Street, and it has some business leaders hiding their wallets under their mattresses.  The market nosedive of 2008 is still fresh in our minds, and every business is hoping for the best while preparing for the worst.

A common management response to a potential downturn is short-term cost cutting.  Though it’s important to watch cash flows carefully, being financially prepared does not necessarily mean a spending freeze.  This mindset ignores long-term financial prospects, and does little to safeguard a business from future economic slumps.

Some of the best defensive measures a business can take are forward-looking investments.  A carefully executed Enterprise Content Management System is a perfect example of this.  On face value, ECM seems like an expensive route to financial prosperity, meant only for large corporations with almost limitless cash.  But the long-term (and even short-term) benefits of an ECM system far outweigh these initial costs, and there are systems available that fit almost any size company and business need.

Stripping a company of its valuable employees or other key assets should always be a last resort for cost savings.  A savvy manager will look to business processes first, and ECM streamlines this practice.  ECM allows business leaders to take a close look at their information management, and pinpoint inefficiencies.  Sometimes these inefficiencies present themselves as nickels and dimes on a micro-level.  But, in the larger scheme of things, the removal of these small costs across an entire organization could mean the difference between net profit and net loss.

Getting started with Enterprise Content Management is all about having the right information.  Attending an ECM conference such as Nexus is often the best way of finding the solution that fits your business’ needs.  Whether you’re an ECM pro, or even if this is the first time you’ve encountered the acronym, Nexus ’11 has sessions that will deliver any of the information you want or need.

So go to www.NexusECM.com and find out how to save your business money while keeping your focus on the long-term.

Kyle Miller
Corporate Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

If only I were as Popular as the Nexus Conference

I am a newcomer to the world of ImageSource and ECM; having never attended Nexus, I know no more about the conference than what can be transmitted through words.   So, naturally, I’ve been tasked with calling past attendees of Nexus to tell them why they should return this year.

Wait, What?

Over these last 8 weeks at ImageSource I’ve completed a wide variety of tasks.  But, I have to admit, I was quite rattled by this assignment at first.  How was I to tell people about a conference which even I had yet to attend?  I was convinced that my ignorance would have me written off immediately.

I could not have been more wrong.

My background in retail primed me for the hard sell; I was certain that I would have to push the conference relentlessly to drive registrations.  However, to say that my calls have been met with warm reception would be a drastic understatement.  Past attendees have stopped me mid-sentence, reminding me that their previous experience was more than enough to make them want to come back.  One individual stayed silent through my entire pitch, and at the end he confessed that during my rambling, he had registered online and was excited to meet me there.

After a week of calling, I’m fairly certain that all I have to say to get people to register are two words:  ImageSource and Nexus.

My coworkers have been trying to convince me that this event was great for months, and I have had no reservations.  Still, simply hearing the excitement from past attendees has inspired that confidence in me.  When it comes to the value of attending Nexus, I no longer have trouble counting my chickens before they hatch.

Kyle Miller
Corporate Communications Manager

Vote for These Valuable ImageSource Presentations at OpenWorld 2011

ImageSource has proposed three presentations ideas for Oracle OpenWorld 2011. Please help us bring these valuable presentations to the Oracle community by voting for the three sessions below at the Oracle Mix website.

Getting Real with Oracle ECM 11g – Benefits & Lessons Learned from Going Live
Join this interactive discussion on the implementation of Oracle ECM 11g. See successful 11g installs for Accounts Payable and Records Management and learn how the most recent Oracle technology sets a solid foundation for these organizations for years to come. Discover how 11g provides a tight integration between vertical components providing a wide range of choices and more flexibility in architecting and designing solutions. Explore how Oracle 11g also provides a host of benefits in the context of the broader Oracle line-of-business platforms – weather it’s Siebel, CRM on demand, JD Edwards or PeopleSoft – the integrations will be tight.

Mastering Records Management and Retention Policies with Oracle ECM 11g
One of the largest counties in the Northwest recently implemented Oracle ECM 11g for Universal Records Management. The system, designed around the core concept of contribution folders, is blazing the way to effectively manage records County-wide. The technology provides a hierarchal structure, with drag-and-drop functionality and automatic metadata and retention policies, for efficient and effective records management. Discover how this infrastructure for records management can facilitate Public Disclosure Requests and unleash the many enterprise capabilities of Oracle 11g.

Oracle ECM & PeopleSoft/JDE – A Synergistic Combination
If you use PeopleSoft/JDE and are interested in extending their capabilities to accelerate multiple business processes, then this is a must-attend session. Through a tight integration, business processes are automated using Oracle ECM software to leverage your data residing in your Oracle database, optimizing operations. Further advancing efficiencies, users can utilize ECM functionality without leaving the familiar PeopleSoft/JDE interface. Capture structured and unstructured information from paper or any digital source, develop electronic workflows and store all your information in a secure repository. Learn about specific synergistic solutions that have streamlined processes for Higher Ed, Financial Services, Human Resources and more.

You must become a Oracle Mix member to vote. Please sign up and vote to see ImageSource present at OpenWorld.

To Vote:

1) Click on this link: https://mix.oracle.com/
2) Register as an Oracle Mix member
3) Click on “Suggest A Session”
4) Sort by title
5) You must vote for at least three sessions for your vote to count. Please vote for the three presentations above!

Debbie Horton
ImageSource
Communications Director

Don’t Miss This AACRAO Seattle Presentation

ImageSource is really excited about the AACRAO conference being held in Seattle next week. In our booth (booth #106), we will be demonstrating how a student applying for college can go to the University portal and view the progress of their application.

This process will dramatically reduce the number of phone calls and emails that are fielded by an overworked Admissions office. At the booth, you will see the though process behind a new ECM process.

ImageSource is also giving a presentation Tuesday evening at 5 p.m. Any College, University or Higher Ed Institution looking to become more efficient when it comes to students can’t miss this.

Can’t wait to see you there!

Terry Butler
Chief Solutions Officer
ImageSource, Inc.

Calling All SMBs!

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve walked into my doctor’s office, my dentist’s office, a community college office and seen rows and rows and rows of file folders filled with information about patients, students, customers, etc.

So let’s take the process at my doctor’s office as an example. I had an appointment not too long ago and my insurance information had changed. The receptionist made a photocopy of my new insurance card and then printed out about half a dozen new pages for me to fill out. Then she input the information into her computer and filed the forms into my folder.

I think about how much paper they use, how much space they need to store all those documents, and how much they’re spending in time and labor.

All small- to medium-sized business – there’s a product that can decrease the time spent on capturing that information, retrieval and can securely store your documents! ILINX® Content Store was designed with SMBs in mind. It captures documents and stores them securely for easy retrieval down the road. What’s awesome about this product is that it installs in a matter of minutes and users can be trained in about 30 minutes!

Kristina Farma
ImageSource, Inc.

My Grandma Doesn’t Get What I Do…

I know I’m not the only person this has happened to. You have a friend, loved one or even a stranger ask you what you do for a living or what industry you work in. What I’ve found is that being in the Enterprise Content Management (ECM) space sometimes makes it difficult to describe what ECM is exactly (in plain English).

My grandma has asked me at least five times what exactly I do and more specifically, what the industry is about, and the dialogue goes something like this:

Grandma: “So Kristina, what exactly does your company do? I know you’ve told me before, but I can’t really remember.”

Kristina: “We are an enterprise content management solutions provider, an integrator and we have our own line of products called ILINX®. We also have this really cool conference every year called Nexus® with presenters, networking time, a vendor expo, etc.”

At this point, my grandma is just staring at me, blankly.

Grandma: “Um, so what does that mean?”

Kristina: “It basically just means we help people try to automate their business processes by scanning in documents, implementing automated workflows, utilizing capture software, storing information in electronic databases, things like that.”

My grandma’s eyes are beginning to glaze over…

Kristina: “In a nutshell, grandma, we help businesses become more efficient and more paper-conscious.”

After being in this industry for a few years, living and breathing it every day, I can sometimes easily forget that others don’t understand what capture is, how workflows come together, or why you’d ever need to get rid of fax machines and paper. They don’t throw acronyms around like OCR, BPM and ERM, which have become part of my everyday language.

I am glad my grandma isn’t the only person who doesn’t know or understand what ECM is. Check out this awesome video played at Nexus ’10 this year where people were asked to answer the question, What is ECM?

My grandparents just mastered text messaging. I’ll continue to work on a good description of my industry that doesn’t make my grandma ask me the question every time she sees me, “Kristina, what does your company do again?”

Kristina Parma
Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

 

Compliance = ROI

Following up on my last post (Invoke Change) and in preparation of my upcoming segment at the annual ImageSource user conference, Nexus, I found some very interesting ROI metrics surrounding compliance enablement. This is thought provoking content when factoring in some of the more intangible reasons to make technology investments in ECM. I have worked with organizations that actually have budget for fines levied through the normal course of a fiscal year. This should tell you that there is REAL savings potential as a result of acknowledging the impact ECM technologies may yield on compliance.

According to PriceWaterhouseCooper, each $1 invested towards compliance saves $5.21 on average! I had the opportunity in the last 12 months to work with an organization that was levied approximately $1 million in fines due to their inability to recover documents tied to the gaming industry in Las Vegas. Ouch! Another interesting find was made by Cohasset Associates. They have found that for every 100 people, annual savings of $240,000 can result from technology investments towards compliance.

As we work aggressively within our organizations to streamline and evolve business processes with ECM technologies, don’t overlook or underestimate the compliance savings that can be realized!

Why Training is Important

I recently had a conversation with an individual about ECM training.  This person needs to learn how to build a new application for both capture and her ECM system.  When I described the training and associated cost to her, she could not understand why the training is a comprehensive as it is or why the cost is what it is.  Her feeling was that the system must not be “user-friendly”.

What we tend to forget is that a successful implementation of a new application includes much more that creating fields and assigning properties.  It is essential that the entire business process be taken into account.  ECM systems are designed to replace your paper manual paper and other  processes.  Throwing together some fields that hopefully allow you to find your information is not enough.  It is necessary to know your processes inside and out and to  look at other processes that might touch your application as well.

As with everything else, it is the up front planning and effort that make the end result “user-friendly” .

One place to learn more about the subtleties of ECM is at the 2010 Nexus ECM Conference in Bellevue, WA on November 4 and 5.  Please consider attending this event.  It will be well worth your investment.

“Today’s Trends in Capture”

Are you manually processing documents? How much time are you spending on this? How many employees does it take? How much is it costing you in paper, ink and other supplies? Have you ever thought about implementing a solution to automate your processes through document capture and workflow processing?

ImageSource recently held a webinar titled “Today’s Trends in Capture” that highlighted different aspects of document capture, including centralized capture, distributed capture, real use cases, benefits and challenges as well. The webinar also discussed how there are a variety of capture products available depending on what you’re looking for and what business challenges you are looking to solve. If you would like to view this webinar, please visit our website. ImageSource will be hosting additional webinars, so please stay tuned for dates and topics. If there is a topic you would like to see discussed, please let us know.

One product that was highlighted was ILINX© Capture. ILINX Capture is a web-based capture product that allows users to access it from anywhere in the world wherever there is an Internet connection. ILINX Capture is a perfect example of a product that is great for distributed capture. ILINX Capture provides businesses with a variety of different benefits, including the following:

  • Requires minimal training
  • Supports distributed and centralized environments
  • Streamlines business processes
  • Reduces costs associated with paper (shipping, printing and copying, tracking lost documents)
  • Configurable based on user needs

Document capture has proven to be a success in many organizations world-wide. Nexus ’10, ImageSource’s annual ECM Solutions Conference, offers a variety of tracks on capture. Nexus ’10 will be held in Bellevue, Washington at the Meydenbauer Center November 4-5. To learn more about Nexus or to register for the ECM Conference, visit http://NexusECM.com.

Kristina Parma
Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.
@KristinaParma

 

Executive Roundtables – Register Now!

ImageSource will be hosting two roundtables for CIOs/Executives – one in Newport Beach, Calif. and the other in Olympia, Wash. Registration space is limited!

The first is a roundtable held in Newport Beach, Calif. on Feb. 5, 2010, from 9:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. at the Hyatt Regency Newport Beach. The title is How Social Networking, Mobile Computing & the Millennial Workforce will Shape Corporate America. In this session, you are invited to join local technology executive, Shadrach White – ImageSource CTO, and other corporate executives in an interactive roundtable to explore how a new set of social technology dynamics are affecting how we do business.

During the hour, attendees will examine how social networking sites like LinkedIn, Facebook, MySpace and Twitter, together with Mobile Devices like the iPhone, BlackBerry and Netbooks are shaping the way information is created and disseminated. Like cell phones, email and Internet, social media has the capacity to transform our work environment and processes. Future success will depend on how this new media is embraced and how the newest generation entering the workforce – Millennials (Generation Y) – is leveraged. How well this business shift is understood will undoubtedly affect the success in recruiting new employees, managing information and training current workers, now and in the future. For more information, or to register for the event, visit the Events tab at http://imagesourceinc.com.

The second roundtable will be held at the Red Lion Hotel in Olympia, Wash. on March 11, 2010, from 9:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. The title is The Millennial Workforce – Information Management Solutions for Web 2.0. This is Part II in the series, and the follow up to How Social Networking, Mobile Computing & the Millennial Workforce will Shape Digital Government. This roundtable will explore solutions around collaborative tools and how to best utilize them. Issues, such as security, compliance and archiving will be explored in the second part of this popular roundtable session. For more information, or to register for the event, visit the Events tab at http://imagesourceinc.com.

To register for either event, please visit the Events tab at http://imagesourceinc.com. We hope to see you there!

Kristina Parma
Corporate Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

Come Play in the Social Media Sandbox!

Okay, so now I have 30+ days under my belt, in “my” new world of ECM ( Enterprise Content Management).  To say it is a new “world” is the understatement of the year.   So much to learn, so much to know, and so much to share!

One of the big things that I hear “buzzing” around is the concept of COMPLIANCE and RISK!   What does that mean?  What does that include? How do we begin to manage that?  As IT/Record Managers in the content management space, how can we keep pace with the many new forms of communication,when the traditional forms of communication and business interactions kept us quite busy.  Now that Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIN, Blogs,Wiki’s etc. are all the rage, it has become more challenging than before.

Take a look at this branding, advertising, marketing company’s home page: http://www.exclaimllc.com/  In summary, their client’s customers are demanding to be  reached through many different avenues.  Many companies are choosing some of these communication methods, but I think Exclaim did a brilliant job of showcasing all the options plus their expertise in understanding messaging in these new forms of communications.

Now the question is, what does this mean as far as compliance and risk?  Is your company ready to manage the amount of data that is coming in and out of your organization on a daily basis?   Take a look at this slide provided in a recent AIIM Orgainziation Webinar.   Very interesting percentages to consider.  There are many different approaches to tackling this issue.  Companies are now beginning to evaluate the risk they have while participating in these new communication channels.  We can provide some insight on these different approaches. What are you doing to minimize the risk?

Read : AIIM – White Paper – Enterprise 2.0

Geetha French- ECMP

Account Executive

ImageSource, Inc.

 

AIIM 2010 Awards Nominations Open – ImageSource and the City of Kennewick Win in 2009

AIIM recently announced they are accepting nominations for the AIIM 2010 awards.  The Awards Program recognizes the leaders, the innovators, and the dedicated members of our community. Award nominees test the boundaries of our industry, look to the future, respect the past, take risks, serve their profession, and welcome diversity of thought.

In 2009 ImageSource Customer Partner, the City of Kennewick, was the recipient of the Carl E Nelson Best Practices Award which recognizes excellence in the ECM field by showcasing successful ECM implementations.

The award winning implementation at the City of Kennewick provides a comprehensive system for a variety of business processes. It supplies workflows for the routing, review, approval and distribution of City Council agenda documentation and enterprise repository document storage. Electronic LiquidOffice time cards have been implemented for streamlining the submission of information by employees and payroll processing. Additionally, ImageSource’s ILINX Distributed Indexing was integrated to enable the successful contribution of all content to the City’s Oracle repository through intuitive indexing and validation. The new system has contributed to the City’s existing levels of service, despite the reduction of seven full‐time employees in the current biennium. The City’s new technologies and ensuing processes have the potential to save Kennewick nearly one million‐dollars in storage costs over the next five years.

The 2010 Awards will be presented during the AIIM Exposition and Conference in Philadelphia, April 20-22. ImageSource looks forward to submitting another world-class solution for consideration in 2010.

Debbie Horton
Communication Director

Excellent Planning and Project Management Earn Awards for City of Richland, Washington

 

Congratulations to the City of Richland, Washington.  Their ECM solution deployed earlier this year has earned  two prestigious awards within the past month.

In early November, the City of Richland won the ImageSource Customer Partner Award for best return  on investment.  The award was presented to Jon Amundson, Assistant City Manager and Christina Palmer, Project Manager at Nexus 2009.

Last week it was announced that the City of Richland was also named to the Info World top 100 list of IT projects.  The solution consisted of Oracle IPM, Cardiff Liquid Office,  a Bundle of ILINX products http://www.imagesourceinc.com/Products/ILINXProducts/index.htm which were used to extend the capabilities of the Off The Shelf Software.

The vision, professionalism and standard of excellence exhibited by the Richland team is to be commended.  Congratulations, City of Richland!

 

Congratulations City of Richland!

ImageSource would like to congratulate the City of Richland on winning both an ImageSource Customer Partner Award for the Largest Return on Investment at Nexus 09, as well as an InfoWorld 100 Award!

ImageSource’s annual Customer Partner Awards recognize customer organizations who have implemented solutions that streamline business processes and make efficient use of different technologies. The InfoWorld 100 Awards recognize organizations who have implemented technologies that have helped achieve business goals. For the complete list, visit www.infoworld.com.

Jon Amundson from the City of Richland sat on the Case Study Panel at Nexus 09, ImageSource’s ECM Solutions Conference, to discuss the solution at Richland. To be a part of Nexus 10, go to www.NexusECM.com to register! Register before December and receive a discounted price of $195! Use code NEXUS10SPL. After that, the price goes up to $295!

Kristina Parma
Corporate Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

  

Interface ’09

I had the opportunity to work the Interface ’09 tradeshow yesterday with ProStor Systems. There was a ton of activity at the ProStor booth, and it was a great opportunity to learn more about the storage solutions that ProStor offers. Some things that people were interested in that ProStor specializes in were:

  • Long-term data storage
  • Archiving
  • Backup
  • Compliance

I am looking forward to working more with ProStor and learning more about their storage options as well. ProStor exhibited at this year’s Nexus conference, and we would love to have them at Nexus ’10 as well. Registration for next year is up and active. Don’t miss your chance to register for the northwest’s premier ECM Solutions Conference, Nexus.

Kristina Parma
Corporate Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

 

Nexus 2010 ECM Solutions Conference EARLY BIRD DISCOUNT $195

Nexus 2009 ECM Solutions Conference was a resounding SUCCESS!!

First I would like to thank every single attendee and our valuable sponsors for your enthusiastic participation and support.  Nexus2010 registrations continue to be completed by organizations that understand the value and importance that this event has on the strategic planning of ECM initiatives for their businesses.  Nexus2010 will be held at the Meyedenbauer Convention Center on Nov. 4th & 5th – 2010.  We are encouraged of course by the outpouring of positive feedback we have received, we are grateful for each and every comment.  ImageSource will work diligently to again “raise the bar” in all aspects of planning, execution and content delivery.  We are listening on our Nexus Twitter feed for any and all recommendations for speakers, breakouts and special events that you feel would be valuable, so Tweet us!

The Green ECM Video can be found on YouTube so check it out.


We are offering a limited time promotion for early registrations of $195 for a full conference pass. Use discount code NEXUS10SPL.  Register early as we are keeping this event exclusive so seating is limited

Also a reminder of where you can find more information on ECM topics, please add us to your RSS feed and Follow us on Twitter.  Stay tuned for our FaceBook fan sites too.

BLOGS
Nexus ECM: http://nexusecmsolutionsconference.wordpress.com/
ECM Project Managers: http://ProjectManagementForECM.wordpress.com
ECM Systems Engineers: http://ECMTechnicalExpertise.wordpress.com
ECM Solutions: http://IndependentIntegratorsOfECM.wordpress.com
ECM Developers: http://SoftwareDevelopmentForECM.wordpress.com

Twitter
Nexus ECM Twitter feed http://twitter.com/nexusecm
ImageSource Twitter feed http://twitter.com/imagesourceinc
ILINX Capture Twitter feed http://twitter.com/ilinxcapture
ECM Support Twitter feed http://twitter.com/ecmsupport

Shadrach White
ImageSource, Inc.

Nexus 09 Recap

For those of you who attended Nexus 09, you know how awesome it was. For those of you who didn’t, here is a little recap for you.

The opening event at the Twisted Cork at the Hyatt in Bellevue was a great way to kick off the conference and bring together attendees, vendors and ImageSource staff. There were appetizers and cocktails, and it was just a fun way to mingle with everyone.

The first day of the conference was very eventful. It kicked off with Atle Skjekkeland, Vice President of AIIM as the keynote speaker. He discussed new worker models, Enterprise 2.0 and social media. The second keynote presentation that day was a case study panel. Each panelist discussed his solution and the benefits it brought each organization, as well as answered questions.

The breakouts for the first day were packed with information ranging from SharePoint, to ILINX Capture, to Social Media.

The evening event was held at Lucky Strike Lanes in Bellevue. This was an awesome event. It was not your typical bowling alley. It was chic and modern. The food was fabulous and the music was great.

Day two of the conference boasted Shadrach White, CTO of ImageSource and John Isaza from Howett Isaza Law Group as the keynotes. Breakouts were centered around records management, enterprise planning, and more.

If you haven’t registered for Nexus 2010, you need to! Space is limited and right now, the price is only $195! Use code NEXUS10SPL. The dates are Nov. 4-5 at the Meydenbauer Center.

If you would like additional information on ECM topics, please add us to your RSS feed and Follow us on Twitter. Stay tuned for our Facebook Fan Page and Profile as well.

BLOGS
Nexus ECM: http://nexusecmsolutionsconference.wordpress.com/
ECM Project Managers: http://ProjectManagementForECM.wordpress.com
ECM Systems Engineers: http://ECMTechnicalExpertise.wordpress.com
ECM Developers: http://SoftwareDevelopmentForECM.wordpress.com
ECM Products: http://ProductsAndSolutionsForECM.wordpress.com

Twitter
Nexus ECM Twitter feed http://twitter.com/nexusecm
ImageSource Twitter feed http://twitter.com/imagesourceinc
ILINX Capture Twitter feed http://twitter.com/ilinxcapture
ECM Support Twitter feed http://twitter.com/ecmsupport

Kristina Parma
Corporate Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

IBM Information On Demand 2009 – Las Vegas Conference Day 3 Powering Down

IMG_0066

Today concluded the last day for the exhibitors at the conference.  For those that stopped by the ILINX booth and saw the ILINX Capture demo, I hope you walked away learning a thing or two about our product. For those that did not get a chance to see our demo or would like more info about the product, you can visit our official site at ilinxcapture.com.  Alternatively, if you are attending our Nexus 2009 event, you can always swing by and ask for a demo.

As always, if you have any questions/suggestions for the product, don’t hesitate to leave a comment.   Thanks!

IBM Information On Demand 2009 – Las Vegas Conference Day 2

IMG_0061IMG_0063

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A breakout session that I attended today was Getting Microsoft SharePoint Content Under Control with IBM ECM. I was going into the class expecting to see tips and best practices on how to configure SharePoint using IBM tools, but there was no tips or tricks.

The class was really about IBM connectors for SharePoint.  I thought the IBM folks did a good job of providing a nice and easy UI that integrated with SharePoint seamlessly.  Check out screen shots below, taken from my iPhone.  The first picture is the indexing screen and the second is the search screen.

Phong Hoang
Development Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

 

 

IBM Information On Demand 2009 – Las Vegas Conference Day 1

I attended the grand opening session for the conference today and thought it was well executed.  The official title for the session is “Information-Led Transformation: Lead the Way” and it lasted for an hour and a half with entertainment, live interview from selected IBM customers and some statistics numbers from IBM.

I ended my Day 1 at the conference pondering the question: how can we deliver accurate information to the right resources in the shortest and most useful way?

Phong Hoang
Development Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

Microsoft SharePoint 2010 – Las Vegas Day 4 ‘Adios’

Leaving Las Vegas

Leaving Las Vegas

I sitting on the plane packed with SharePoint conference attendees, including Jeff Teper – Corporate Vice President, Office Business Platform.  Lots of conversations around the plane about the conference and the exciting new features and opportunties that are coming in 2010.

I look forward to the Beta 2 release of SharePoint 2010 and Microsoft Office 2010.  Windows 7 was release yesterday, I have had it at home for several weeks.  As a user and technology executive I can say that Windows 7 is definately a major step forward in simplicity, user experience, stability and efficiency.  Having spent 3 days being bombared by SharePoint 2010 messaging and seeing the product in action I am pretty impressed with what the SharePoint and Office teams and Microsoft have done.

I look forward to seeing you at Nexus 2009, we will be showing sneek peeks of SharePoint 2010 and talking about some of the new features during SharePoint specific breakouts.

Shadrach White
Chief Technology Officer
ImageSource, Inc.

 

Microsoft SharePoint 2010 – Las Vegas Conference Day 3

Kraft Foods and Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE) gave excellent presentations on how they have adopted SharePoint solutions.  Each took different approaches in deploying the platform.  Kraft focused on Web Content Management and CCE deployed using Business Product Online Services BPOS for employee team sites, collaboration, search, calendar shares and business intellegence.

In both cases the organizations selected SharePoint as not only a technology but a platform to enable their employees to engage more collaboratively.  Both organizations are eager to continue building out cutting edge ECM, WCM, BI and Social media applications on SharePoint 2010.

kraftfoods  Kraft Foods Digital Marketing group led by Rose Moda worked with Blackwell Consulting and Razorfish to deliver an extensbile, flexible and highly scalable web content management platform.  The customer facing websites are crisp, easily updated, brand flexible and powered by SharePoint.

Kraft is the second largest domestic food manufacturer and distributor with an annual revenues of 42B.  They have some of the best known brands that you find in your refrigerator or pantry everyday.  Including Maxwell House, Oscar Meyer, Oreo, Philedelphia Cream Cheese and Nabisco.  40 of the Kraft brands are over 100 years old.  Kraft has 168 manufacturing and food distribution facilities worldwide.

With 270 sites globally and 3 different (web) Content Management Systems, Kraft forcasts a $2.2M cost saving over 2 years using the SharePoint ECM platform.  They are currently running 64-bit versions of MS SharePoint 07 (MOSS) and MS Commerce Server 07.

Kraft wanted the new platform to provide fast, easy publishing.  In order give the sites clean brand awareness – reusable rich media web parts were developed that could be skinned to provide flexibility and uniquness across specific brand sites.  The platform had to be scalable and bullet proof, Frank Perkins from the technical team was part of the team that helped make sure the infrastructure was rock solid.

Maria DeLuna, Technical Director at Razorfish (a Microsoft company), was responsible for leading the design effort.  Key objectives were driven by the fact that each brand wanted flexibility ‘no strict templating‘.  This is not an easy task considering the re-usability goal that was necessary to gain ROI.  Out of the box skins & web parts were used to provide key internet marketing tools for polling, customer registration, product rating/reviews and newsletter functions.  By doing this each brand’s marketing group attained feature rich integration with no backend development work needed, this speeds deployment by not having to wait for development to code standard functions.  They achieved full creative layout control over were these webparts could be placed, this gave them more flexibility to what marketing does best, ‘create a vision’.

Web Parts Generate XML -> Apply XSLT -> Add Form Ctrls -> Render HTML
You can have one web part for navigation but present it differently on a brand’s site by using CSS.  For instance one recipe webpart by all brands don’t look the same.  Besides who wants to go to a Cool Whip recipe and have it presented the same way an A-1 Steak Sauce recipe is presented.

Kraft used a flexible template model that could incorporate standard content items but seperate them from presentation UI to let each brand have its own identity.  This cuts way down on what I call excessive wheel building.  Functional content items are bundled in a content group so they can be shared across sites and customized using CSS and XHTML to give them a unique look and feel.  Gene Hong from Blackwell gave a technical overview of the web part properties and content publishing process.

cokelogoCoca-Cola Enterprises has 75K employees, spread across 431 facilities worldwide.  23 – 30K of those employees are knowledge workers connected by PC’s, Laptops and Mobile computing devices.  They have 4 distinct lines of drinks, Sparkling (coke), Energy (monster), Juice, Water (dasani) and Tea.  Brett Kirkland (Priniciple Architect), Shahira Elsohy and Jonathan Phillips (Public Affairs) presented “The Sky’s the Limit – Journey to the Cloud”

CCE decided in 2008 to that it needed a 21st century communications platform.  They wanted to consolidate the communications infrastructure to reduce the number of vendors providing those services, this drives ROI.  They needed real world collaboration for employees, thus increasing the social networking culture between groups.  The vision was to establish digital communications as the key enabler to engage employees to drive sustainably collaboration and ongoing innovation.  Employees have good ideas and valuable knowledge, connecting them better would give CCE a competitive advantage.

In March of 2008 CCE announced that it had selected Microsoft for its integrated communication and collaboration platform using Online Services for SharePoint, Exchange and Office.  By moving these technologies to the Cloud and taking advantage of a SaaS licensing model they gained ROI and efficiency by off loading support, ongoing hardware and software upgrades and daily maintenance.

  • Key success factors included:
    Active and Visible Executive Support – critical
  • Market as an ongoing change management campaign well before launch
  • Simplified Integration
  • Created two-way communications

For a marketing video clip visit this link Coca Cola & Microsoft
Also this video from CCE Executives on the Decision to go with BPOS

Shadrach White
Chief Technology Officer
ImageSource, Inc.

 

Microsoft SharePoint 2010 – Las Vegas Conference Day 2

Today I attended several breakout sessions.  First up, Booz Allen Hamilton: The Right Information to the Right People at the right time – How Social Computing empowers BAH.  Walton Smith from the Business Portals and Social Media team gave a very insightful presentation on the evolution of Social Networking platforms at BAH.  He focused on how creating a suite of social media tools has fostered increased communication, collaboration and innovation.

Capture

Tag Tile – Tag Cloud

Three key elements to the adoption of Social Networking in an organization can be illustrated by the following:

  • You already have Social Network(s) within your organization.  The challenge is that it isn’t formalized, searchable or managed using a platform like SharePoint at an Enterprise level.
  • Change Management is the pivot point of successful adoption and usability.  50% of the Social Media teams budget at BAH is spent on change management, the other 50% is development of the Social Computing platform.  It’s important to understand that we can learn to work together differently, to evolve using the tools that are available today.
  • Outlook is most likely your Defacto Collaboration tool.  The problem is all the information is stored in silos and not easily browsed or searched to find important information & knowledge.

Enterprise initiatives to adopt and manage these important technologies should incorporate key areas of the organization from the outset, Legal, Marketing, HR and IS.  It is vitally important to have Executive support and visibility.  Use your Executive team and the most tenured employees as the foundation for populating social media.  Have their profiles, experience and messaging populated and available as an example.  This creates top down adoption and enthusiasm.  Other areas to focus on as outlined in the presentation are:

  • Develop Information sharing policies
  • Make the adoption viral, show recently updated profiles and Tag Tiles / Tag Clouds to highlight the most recent and popular content
  • Don’t put anything on the Social net you wouldn’t want your mother or boss to know
  • When on boarding new employees use the Social computing platform

Much of the effort to change people’s perception of Social Computing as a tool and not a toy will come from connecting communities of people together and providing information that ultimately speeds work productivity and decision making.

Social Networking provides a venue to feel more connected to your colleagues.  You most likely have more in common with the people you work with than you think.  The bigger the organization the harder it is to connect and find valuable information.  The wheel often gets reinvented and the time to complete ‘like’ activities is compounded.

There was much more to get absorb from Walton’s presentation but these are some of the highlights I took from the breakout.

I will be presenting more on this topic at Nexus 2009 held in Bellevue, WA. at the Meydenbauer Convention Center Nov 2-3, 2009

Shadrach White
Chief Technology Officer
ImageSource, Inc.

 

Microsoft SharePoint 2010 – Las Vegas Conference Day 1

The 2009 Microsoft SharePoint Conference held at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas has officially kicked off.  It has attracted around 6,000 attendees from around the world.

SharePoint 2009 Conference Badge

SharePoint 2009 Conference Badge

ImageSource exhibited recently at Oracle OpenWorld in San Francisco, we will round out this month with attendance at Kofax Transform in San Diego and we will be exhibiting at IBM On Demand at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, which begins October 25th and runs through the 29th.

Then the Annual Nexus Enterprise Content Management conference begins November 2nd and runs through November 3rd.  I look forward to seeing you there and hope you can attend some of the breakouts that I will be speaking at, check out the agenda here.

I attended several break-out sessions today at the SharePoint conference and wanted to highlight some of the exciting announcements coming from Microsoft & KnowledgeLake.  First I attended ECM for the Masses – How SharePoint Delivers on the Promise.  Key areas that everyone who has followed Microsoft SharePoint has considered as gaps in true ECM functionality are starting to be addressed.

  1. Records Management:  SharePoint 2010 comes completed with a revamped Records Center, that includes the ability to create taxonomy schedules and import existing schedules using CSV files.  Microsoft is calling this Managed Metadata.  More importantly there is now a Unique Document ID that is created for each content item.  This Document ID is stored in the database and follows the content item regardess of where the original content is stored or migrated to.  This will also make integrating with 3rd party Line of Business applications such as ERP, CRM or Cloud based computing platforms.  Other key features include Document Sets that allow you to create work packets/packages, Advanced Routing to determine appropriate library or folder with predefined RM metadata.  Check in / Check out, Legal Holds, Folksonomy (tags created by individual users, that can be re-used)
  2. Web Content Management:  In context editing, by implementing the Ribbon UI, familiar to Office 2007 users, authoring and editing exisitng web content is a snap.  Rich media support for photos, video and audio files has been updated with a new slice of cool SilverLight that allows web developers to skin the player to match the rest of the sites branding.  Also included are web analytics that allow site owners to monitor traffic and size of the site(s).
  3. BLOB: binary large objects, for years ECM practitioners and tenured professionals have known that storing large image files in the database is a no-no.  This architecture created real scalability problems for SharePoint 2003 & 2007.  Although it was somewhat addressed with EBS, external blob storage support in 2007.  It was still a sticking point for enterprises looking to deploy large SharePoint solutions to support 100’s of millions of content items like TIF files.  KnowledgeLake did a nice job of using EBS techniques in their software to bridge the scalability issues.  With SP 2010, RBS or Remote Blob Storage is now support at the API level.  This will allow third party storage vendors to create fully pluggable storage architectures that can be used to reduce SQL database growth, advance SP scalability and much more.
  4. Workflow:  For many who have used third party workflow engines and tools, the out of the box capabilities of earlier versions of SharePoint were lackluster.  In SharePoint 2010 you can build rules based workflow routing for individual content items and document sets based on document actions.  Most of the workflow demonstrations I saw were modeled around records management processes.  I will have to seek more information on this as the conference progresses.

I also attended KnowledgeLake: ECM on SharePoint 2010 – Features that rock!  by Chris Caplinger.  This was very well attended and I learned about some of the key Server & Scalability improvements to Indexing, Search/Query and the aforementioned EBS/RBS architecture.  Chris gave a sneek preview of the new KnowledgeLake Viewer based on SilverLight, very cool.

Shadrach White
Chief Technology Officer
ImageSource, Inc.

ECM Best Practices: Green Solutions

ECM Solutions almost always yield two kinds of green: Green in your wallet and Green for the environment.

Manual processes take time and are labor-intensive. Green solutions allow companies to better use resources, time and money.

Scenario 1:
Company A does not have an ECM solution. They do all their reviews and approvals manually. They route documents manually and have to make copies for every reviewer/approver. Joe is the person who receives all the necessary documents to start the application process. He then has to make copies for five other people to review and approve or deny. Once those five people have reviewed the documents, they have to route the documents to each of their bosses, another five copies. The entire application process takes about four to six weeks. The applicant is then notified by mail if their application has been approved or denied.

Scenario 2:
Company B has an ECM solution in place. They are utilizing electronic forms and workflows. Jim receives the necessary documents to start the application process online. He goes to his Inbox and there is an email informing him he has documents to review. He reviews those documents and then routes them electronically to the next five people who need to review them. Then those five people route it to each of their bosses. There is a two-day limit on the number of days each person has to review the document. The entire process takes about one week. The applicant is then notified by email and/or phone if their application has been approved or denied, and no paper had to be printed or copied.

Company B, the one with the electronic forms and workflows, is saving time, money, resources and being more efficient which benefits customers. Turnaround time is much faster and they didn’t need to use any paper. No documents were lost and applications can be stored in a repository for later recall. Company A on the other hand, has a completely manual process where they have to route documents by hand and file them in a file cabinet.

Company B is saving money by using an electronic process. They no longer have to print, copy, etc. This is also much better for the environment. They don’t have to use paper and other materials since everything is done electronically. The return can also be significant because of time savings, cost savings and labor savings.

To learn more about how Green Solutions can help yield more “Green,” join ImageSource at their annual ECM Solutions Conference, Nexus 09. There will be a multitude of presentations on how improving processes can help save you money and be more environmentally friendly. To learn more about Nexus or to register for the event, visit www.NexusECM.com.

Kristina Parma
Corporate Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

 

Benefits of System Integration

Enterprise Content Managment solutions can be expensive.  I have talked with many organizations who see just the cost of implementing solutions and see the benefits as just faster retrieval of information stored in the system.

Integration of your ECM solution with your line of business systems can greatly improve the return on the invstment that you have made in ECM.  Think about how often you are researching employee data in your Human Resources System and suddenly realize that you need actual documents that relate to that data.  You have and ECM system, the problem is that it is not connected to your HR system.  At best you toggle back and forth between screens to get everything you need (maybe clicking on the wrong application and taking extra time. Wouldn’t it be easier if you could access the documents directly from your HR system?

Integration of systems contributes to business intelligence.  How often are you collecting information from multiple systems, often wondering if you have it all.  Sometimes this is just an annoyance.  Sometimes it can be a very expensive annoyance.  Integration used to be a complicated time consuming endeavor.  Now, with integration solutions such as ILINX Connect http://www.imagesourceinc.com/Products/ILINXProducts/ApplicationIntegration/index.htm a single solution can be used to integrate multiple systems using the same procedures for each integration.  How easy can it get?  Want to learn more?  Nexus 2009 http://nexusecm.com/index.htm is coming to Bellevue, Washington on November 2-3.  Come to Nexus and learn more about how integration of your systems can help your bottom line!

Kathleen Fish
ImageSource, Inc.

On Our Way to Oracle Open World

All packed and ready to go for the Oracle Open World conference–October 11-15, 2009. Stop by the ImageSource booth; we will be located in the South Hall in booth #200. Our representatives will be showcasing the latest in ECM solutions that will help you automate and streamline your business processes. We will feature Oracle IPM, UCMFujitsu scanners, and Opex. This year Oracle Open World is all about “Going Green”, and ImageSource has a way for you to see 2 shades of green–one environmental and the other, your bottom line! You won’t want to miss this chance for hands-on demonstrations and face to face meetings with our ECM Solution Specialists.   See you there!

Kim Torres
Marketing Coordinator
ImageSource, Inc.

What is Nexus?

 

If you are looking for a world-class Enterprise Content Management Solutions Conference, look no further. Nexus is the northwest’s premier ECM conference, offering valuable content and infomation, dynamic keynote speakers and much more. For more information or to register for Nexus 09, visit www.NexusECM.com.

Check out the video below from last year’s Nexus conference.

Kristina Parma
Corporate Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

 

The Importance of ECM Education

We all know that the economy is not as robust as it was two years ago.  That is a fact.  It seems that the immediate reaction when the economy slows is to cut back on “non essential” items.  The question is, what is essential and what is not.

The obvious answer is that items that directly produce revenue are essential and everything else is not.  Often the ECM strategy for an organization is to “limp along” with the status quo and not to spend money on upgrades, updates or even education.

The down economy will not last forever.  Would it not be wise to position ourselves to take the best advantage of new opportunities when they arrive?  One of the best ways to do this is to study the ECM environment and to learn about new trends, new solutions, and new methods.

When the economy rebounds, organizations who have prepared will be able to move quickly and move ahead of the competition by deploying new and innovative ECM strategies.

Educational events abound.  Many are very expensive and should be examined in terms of their potential value.  However, there are values in the arena that should be taken seriously.  These events offer “best of breed” presentations on a variety of ECM and management related topics.

A good example of such an event is the annual Nexus conference sponsored by ImageSource www.nexusecm.com  Nexus is a two day event that provides information on all aspects of ECM including Software, Hardware, Project Management, Records Management, Business Analysis, Planning, and Return on investment.  Attendees learn about Capture and Integration and to participate in general discussions about ECM.  Additionally Nexus provides an opportunity to network with ECM peers.

This post may seem to be directed at organizations that may or may not fund education for their employees.  But the same ideas apply to the individual.  If the company won’t fund you, think about investing in yourself.  Wouldn’t it be advantageous to be a few steps ahead when the job market expands?

Think ahead, do you want to be stuck with the status quo, or do you want to be poised to take advantage of a rebounding economy?

Kathleen Fish
Senior Account Executive
ImageSource, Inc.

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Is ECM for Me?

Is ECM for me? This is the question each organization needs to ask themselves before implementing a Enterprise Content Management solution. I came across an interesting post by Ian Llado of Optical Image Technology titled “Six Considerations in Choosing an Enterprise Content Management (ECM) Solution for your Legal Practice” that addressed this. His descriptions were more specific to legal offices and legal documents, but they can really be applied to any organization. Below are a few ideas he presented, as well as a few of my own.

1. Ease of the System
The easier, the better. Customers are going to want something that is easy to use. If employees have to learn a whole new process and new technology, it better be as simple as possible. Change in an organization can be very stressful and difficult for some employees, especially if the new technology is complicated. It’s good to provide customers with a solutions that is simple, as well as offer training and instruction about the system they are receiving.

2. Leveraging Existing Software
In today’s economy, everyone is looking for ways to cut back where they can. Many companies already have some technology in place, they just don’t know how to use it. Or, if they have multiple technologies, they don’t know how to use them together. This is where hiring an ECM integrator can be very valuable. It’s good to hire an integrator who is knowledgeable in many different technologies so that if you have Microsoft, Oracle and Kofaxproducts, the integrator will be able to help you decide how best to utilize each of those, as well as how to use them together. In many cases, there is no need for a complete ECM makeover. Many companies already have the necessary technology in place.

3. Functionality
The amount of functionality customers need will vary depending on their needs and situation. Some of the examples Llado presented were indexing and retrieval, workflow, Web-based systems, scalability, and retention and destruction schedules. All of these are important and can be applied. It really just depends what companies are looking for in an ECM solution.

5. Training
ECM training is one of the most crucial components of implementing an Enterprise Content Management solution. Choosing a vendor that offers extensive training of your new system is always valuable. Some vendors will even train customers at their own sites.

6. Customer Needs
You as a customer need to evaluate what your company’s needs are. The more precise you can be, the better. If you can tell the vendor exactly what your company is looking for, they will be able to give you a more specific solution that can satisfy your needs. Llado discusses security as one of the things to consider, but again, it’s all based on customer needs.

7. The Bottom Line
The whole idea behind implementing an ECM system is to streamline your business processes and make everything much easier and compliant. Other benefits could be saved staff time, reduction in employees, etc. However, may companies measure success through their return on investment (ROI). The faster you can see a return, the better.

If you’re still having trouble deciding if Enterprise Content Management is for you, attending an ECM conference can sometimes be very valuable. NEXUS ’09 will be offering a breakout session titled “What You Need to Evaluate Before Installing an ECM System.” To register for this event or to get more information about NEXUS ’09, visit www.NexusECM.com.

Kristina Parma
Corporate Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.