Compliant Public Disclosure Starts with Smart Records Retention

If there’s one message I consistently hear from customers today, it’s how big of a deal public disclosure is for the government and how we need better solutions around it. That being said, you would not believe how many of these organizations don’t feel that they have a good handle on their content.

In Washington State, public disclosure refers to the release of all documents and content to the person making the request. These documents at minimum need to be available for the requestor to view. There are some exemptions to this, such as sealed case files.

Good public disclosure practices really start with one thing: good record-keeping (and destruction). We hear time and time again from customers that they’ve never thrown anything away for fear that the document may be needed at a later date. While they may be thinking that this is the best way to avoid throwing anything away that should be kept, it also means keeping records that should have been destroyed.

Some aren’t aware of the fact that when a public disclosure request comes in, organizations are required by law to turn over any documentation pertaining to the request (as long as it is subject to disclosure). That means that if documents haven’t been destroyed and fall under the specific request, those documents need to be turned over as well, even though they are past the retention period. This poses a huge risk in regards to potential litigations.

Getting your records in order may seem like an overwhelming task, but here are some steps you can take to move toward better practices related to retention and disposition of records.

  1. Understand YOUR Organization’s Requirements for Record Retention and Disposition
    Every organization is different. Certain records have to be kept longer than others, some records might need to be sealed, others may need redaction before they can be turned over, etc. Each organization, each department, even each business process may have different requirements around records. Determine and document what the requirements are so that when you start to do an inventory of content, you have a definitive plan regarding what needs to be kept and for how long. Click here for a link to the Washington State Records Retention Schedules.
  2. Where are my Records?
    Identify where records are kept. Are they stored on a network share? In a file cabinet? In a content management system? Somewhere else? Are they in paper form? Electronic? Are there video files? Regardless of where the documents are kept, the regulations are around how you get the content organized, not the file format or how hard the collection process is. This will help ensure that there are not duplicate documents, and if there are, that only the pertinent copies are kept so as not to be a factor in a potential litigation.
  3. Perform an Analysis and Inventory of Your Records
    Some organizations choose to do this internally, some hire a contractor, and some take a hybrid approach. Regardless of which path you choose, determine what content you have, what needs to be kept, and what can be disposed of before evaluating any technology. This will keep you from bringing content into a solution that will need to be immediately disposed of after the initial analysis.
  4. Choose a Solution that is Flexible and Easy
    95% of organizations I work with are looking for a solution that is easy-to-use yet flexible enough to change with requirements. They want something that can easily set up to work with current retention and disposition schedules, yet can be updated without too much effort if laws or regulations change.
  5. Trust the System
    If you’ve done the prep work correctly, then what you need to do is trust what you’ve put in place is going to work. Choose a good partner with a track record of success to help you.

These are just a few ideas to get you thinking about what can be accomplished around public disclosure, records retention and your content. ImageSource has been assisting customer partners with these types of solutions for the last 20 years. We have done everything from initial consulting through implementation and support. Below is a short list of some of offerings:

  • Expert consulting to determine your “as is” state and develop a plan to get you to your “desired” state using industry best practices
  • Assessment of your current technology and how it can be leveraged
  • Solution evaluation to perfectly match technology with your requirements
  • Solution deployment, configuration, training and rollout
  • Document collection, conversion, scanning, taxonomy definition and automated classification and metadata extraction
  • Data Migration
  • Ongoing partnership for system/process tuning, growth and support
  • Managed applications services

The ILINX platform can assist any organization with getting a handle on their content.

How to get the best bang for your buck!

Why price is not the most important factor
when purchasing imaging hardware

When shopping for new imaging hardware, many customers look at their budget and let that dictate their purchase. Now I understand that budget is an important factor, however over the last 9 years working with imaging customers, many have purchased equipment based mainly on price – only to discover that it did not meet their long term growth needs.

So in light of these discussions, here is bits of wisdom that can be used as a checklist when considering new purchases:

  • Color or Black & White (B & W) scanning? The majority of scanners automatically come with color option but can also provide B & W scanning for smaller document size files.
  • Is Speed important – scanners are classed by Pages per Minute (PPM). How fast do you need the scanner to scan?
  • How much volume are you expecting to scan per day, week or month? Volume and speed is determined by the manufacturer when they develop the scanner.
  • Manufacturers group their scanners into categories based on PPM and the Daily Duty Cycle (DDC). DDC is how many images the scanner can handle on a daily basis. So if you have a large volume of scanning to be completed on a daily basis, a small desktop workgroup scanner will not be sufficient for the volume – it would break down all the time. Here are the general groupings that manufacturers use:

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Why Courts Need Document Management AND Case Management Systems

Document Management System (DMS) needs should be identified holistically, not just for the needs of the courtroom processes. A successful implementation will be gained through a well thought out plan and a DMS solution that can not only integrate with a courts Case Management System (CMS), but also with Fiscal, HR, Procurement, and other department’s line-of-business systems.

To accomplish a successful implementation of an electronic environment there has to be an overall vision and buy-in from all the key individuals of the court system.

  • Culture and vision which incorporates technology as part of the business strategy
  • Identify areas to integrate technology with the courts business strategies
  • Implementation of an electronic DMS to be used by all departments
  • Integration of the DMS with CMS and other line-of-business systems
  • Provide public access to documents via a web portal (e-Access)

    Puzzle_arrows

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ILINX – the new ECM software kid on the block!

Since my entry into the Enterprise Content Management (ECM) industry in 2001, the biggest challenge that I see for any company is to turn their ECM investment into one that is utilized across the enterprise, and not just for the benefit of one department. After all, that is the whole point of an enterprise system solution. When the whole enterprise benefits, it reduces total cost of ownership and the promise of a return-on-investment (ROI) is realized.

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ImageSource: A Fujitsu Premier Partner X 9

Fujistsu_PP_2012

Fujitsu Premier Partner of the Year

In June, ImageSource was named Premier Partner of the Year, 2012 for the Western Region by Fujitsu Computer Products of America. This marks a whopping ninth time ImageSource has earned this status.

You could say, without question, that ImageSource likes Fujitsu scanners. We like them because Fujitsu invests in R & D and quality control to ensure an exceptional product line that continually evolves to meet the demands of an ever changing capture landscape.
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Rock, Paper, Scissors

rock paper scissorsAs the Fourth of July approaches, we reflect on the formation of our government and the fact that the 3 branches of government are co-equal, as laid out in the first three Articles of the Constitution and several amendments.  If you think of Capture, Content Management Repository and Business Process Management (BPM) they are the three pillars of successful ECM in the enterprise.  Having one without the other does not give the enterprise the full benefit and ROI the technologies have to offer.

Sometimes explaining the value of utilizing all three of these to customers can be challenging.  So, here’s a fun and simple way to think about it:  The concept is best illustrated by the game, “Rock, Paper, Scissors“, which is a game everyone knows.  Depending on circumstances, each application has a chance to provide more ROI than another one, but without one the other cannot truly provide processes efficiencies.  Just like our government and if any one branch vetos or stops a bill.
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Conversion of Documents at California County Assessor’s Office Creates Paperless Office

ImageSource was the privately contracted vendor for a California County Assessor’s Office that embarked upon a major project designed to create a paperless work environment. The project processed and imaged 25 million pages of file documents. Documents were scanned at the rate of 125 images per minute, 8 hours a day. The County also implemented day-forward imaging rather than filing incoming paper documents. The entire project was completed in approximately one year.

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What Helps Make IBM’s Watson So Smart? Content Analytics

If you got to see IBM’s Watson compete on Jeopardy a few months ago, you probably thought that it was interesting that a computer could compete (and win) against humans in a game show. What was not as apparent was the technology behind Watson, or how it could be applied to solve business challenges and provide insight into the massive amounts of unstructured information in your organization.

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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.

Less is MORE

I have a challenge for the readers of this blog.  Are you ready?   Take deep breath.   I want to challenge you to, DO MORE WITH LESS.   I think we are often taught to want more, that we “need more”.   I am challenging you to someone that can do MORE with Less.  I am sure you are wondering how this relates to content management, the topic I was asked to write about.   Well I think I can bring you to that reality, so continue reading.   Today we face an economic reality that is forcing us to do more with less.   It makes you think long and hard about what is important and what is needed.  This concept can be taken all the way to the documents that we deal with for our business processes.  Often we create business process around what we have “always” done.   I think it is time to stop and relook at your business.   How can capturing data as it is created and making it electronic increase productivity as well as reduce costs overall?   Many studies share the ROI of this fact.   Do more with Less.  Stop making more paper, and make Less.  Stop doing more work and do less.   If this is something you are ready to talk about, I know that our team of consultants are the right people to help you conquer that task.  It is a daunting one, but it must be done and you want the right people to lead you through the challenge.   We have done this for many years and have proven to be true professionals and experts at the task.

Please take a minute to read a Case Study done for the City of Kennewick .

“We’ve comfortably taken the leap to a paperless environment. Departments are much more self-sufficient in finding content. I no longer spend countless hours making copies & distributing them.”

– Valerie Loffler, City Clerk, City of Kennewick

Geetha French
Inside Sales
ImageSource Inc.  

Content Collection and eDiscovery

If your organization is like many others, a call from legal or human resources to produce evidence for an electronic discovery (eDiscovery) request can turn into a time consuming and expensive endeavor.  Searching through and analyzing emails, electronic files, SharePoint, and other content is an arduous task, especially if all of that information is contained in silos, with no common repository.

We have helped customers, at the very least, from a cost savings perspective; realize savings from de-duplication of content.  In many cases, customers can see a return on investment in less than one year!

ImageSource can implement enterprise content management solutions that can collect all of the data in you environment, according to your policies, and make it available for legal search and discovery.

We can advise you on best practice for implementing a “content collection, archiving and eDiscovery” infrastructure that will utilize your file plans, and make sure you address these legal concerns:

  • “We don’t want to keep too much content”
  • “We want to keep the right content”
  • “We want to meet the government’s requirement that consistent, repeatable processes are in place”

We’d love to discuss your specific situation, and leverage our expertise to help solve your challenge.  There’s no reason why, with the technology available, that organizations should still be struggling with the same problems from the ‘90s.

Archie Horton
Regional Sales Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

Decentralized Scanning: Evolving Thought

Doctors, for a long time, assumed our brains (like so many other complex machines) had a “top down” structure for how we process and store data. Historically, medical scholars thought that there must have been an overpowering component within the brain (hippocampus) that would call on certain brain neurons for information. If you needed to recall when your wedding anniversary was, the hippocampus would call on neuron 56352.2, for example. If it needed to recall how to jump start your car battery, it would call neuron 7362.3. To prove this theory, doctors in the 60’s hooked up test subjects to various sensory equipment and would ask them a series of questions. They thought, if you asked the test subjects certain things, very specific neurons would fire. So, they began monitoring these specific neurons in the brain… And they wound up waiting and waiting and waiting. Unfortunately for the doctors, instead of a neat, logical correlation between particular memories and particular neurons, they found a hodgepodge of neurons being called. With each question, many different neurons lit up… What was going on?? Surely, memories resided in a specific location in the brain. As much as doctors wanted to find a hierarchy in the brain, it just didn’t exist.

Eventually, doctors began to realize that various memories were actually stored across numerous parts of the brain. At first, scientists thought this theory to be somewhat primitive and disorganized. As counterintuitive as they thought this might be, this brain model theory would make one’s memories far more resilient. In the old model, if the specific brain neuron was damaged, we’d have lost that memory forever. With the more modern understanding, however, the loss of a single brain neuron doesn’t amount to a sudden vanishing of data.

Within the business world (very much like our brains), we constantly try to find hierarchal structure when building companies and organizing business processes. In my review of how companies around the world are adapting within this highly competitive landscape, more and more operations are decentralizing various processes and procedures. They are accommodating new consumer expectations, as opposed to forcing the centralized “brick and mortar” approach to work. The older centralized approach ultimately has become too slow, too costly, and too inconvenient for this modern fast pace demanding and competitive economy. This model creates a single point of failure, which can be detrimental in the grand scope of a business. In the world of imaging (or information capture), more organizations are placing their ingestion gateways out on the web, or simply closer to the consumers themselves. Take a look at the Wikipedia, Ebay or Craigslist business models. Why burden the consumer with complex ordering processes and procedures? Why not empower them with a “24/7” means of ordering services, on their whim or demand? For banks, more new and existing customers are opening accounts online, and more loans are being executed right away as a result of branches being able to capture critical consumer information in “real time”. An insurance adjuster with a hand held capture device like an iPhone can snap a picture in the field and deliver that content directly to a claim file instantaneously. The demands placed on business in this technology age are unmerciful. Business practices should strive to meet the consumer’s needs at new levels and understanding “how” to do this via technology is a step in the right direction. It is possible to utilize all of our business “neurons”. We can branch out and capture more data and accomplish more of our goals.

Just like neuroscience, we need to evolve our thinking in the world of business operations. Distributed Capture, or providing consumers a simple means to interact and request services or products, is the not the wave of the future… It is the demand of the present.

Ed Figueroa
ImageSource, Inc.

Process Improvements – Leveraging Technology – Content Store

 

ILINX® – Content Store

Simple, Easy, Efficient –

Imagine having information at your fingertips.

The power of a piece of paper?   Often what you need to get your job done exists on a “piece of paper” somewhere other than your very own desk.   Think back to life before working in the Document Imaging world and the amount of time wasted trying to gather information. If that was true for me, even in very high tech companies, imagine how it is for others.    Often the things we need to access are very similar between companies and industries.   We all need access to customer information: invoices, P.O’s, shipping information, approval documentation, etc. etc.

ILINX Content Store provides one place to keep this information and a searching capability  similar to a “google” search for your internal documents.  It is truly one of the most user friendly efficient software that I have seen.   How do you make a decision to begin turning the paper in to “less paper?”   Without a doubt in the long run it will save you time and money.   Two things every company can have more of!

Geetha French
Inside Sales
ImageSource 

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.

Do You Know Where Your Records Are? Are They Safe?

Just recently I attended a thought provoking round table discussion involving records management. I, being directly immersed in enterprise content management, have bypassed the times when people stored physical records in an outside storage facility or in cabinets upon filing cabinets solely for records. Oh wait, that still exists!

One topic of discussion was what to do during a disaster. What do you do to save all the paper records when there is a flood or a fire? The various answers ranged from putting them in a trash bag if it involved flooding or putting your records in a freezer if there is a fire. These do seem like practical solutions but I’m not sure how efficient this would be when you are racing against a fire or flood and there are thousands upon thousands of papers that need to be saved for a million dollar corporation.

I do understand the physical storage of paper and it is a practice that has been around forever, but now there are alternative solutions that will not only bring a great return on investment but also you do not have to stress about these “what if” situations. The solution is going paperless with Enterprise Content Management.

Did you know:

  • The cost to manage a 4 drawer filing cabinet costs $25,000 on average. (futurelawoffice.com)
  • It costs $20 to file a document
  • It costs $120 to search for a misfiled document
  • 7.5% of all documents get lost and 3% of the remainder get misfiled (Inc. Magazine)
  • Companies misfile up to 20% of their records (ARMA International)

If you implement an Enterprise Content Management system, these systems are designed to capture, manage, store, deliver and preserve structured and unstructured content.
If you are worried about who will have access to these records and documents, ECM is the answer. You can create restrictions so only certain people are allowed to access certain content.
If you are worried about the retention schedule of your records, ECM is the answer. ECM enables automation of records management so after the 5 year retention period comes up you will get a notification to dispose those records.
If you are worried about your files getting ruined from water or fire, ECM is the answer because you no longer  have to worry about maintaining physical copies.
And an ECM system can allow you to access your information from remote locations with multiple people accessing that info at the same time.

The possibilities are endless!

If you think Enterprise Content Management and going paperless sounds like the ideal solution then you are right. So come and explore the possibilities and capabilities of the various ECM technologies at our Nexus ’11 ECM Solutions Conference in Bellevue, Washington and we will help you get on the right track.

Tracy Lim
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

As Easy as One, Two, Capture

Enterprise. Content. Management (ECM)— “Enterprise content what… Enterprise rental cars?”

People who are not in the ECM/ technology industry are most likely unfamiliar with this three- word term. Just watch our hilarious Street Smarts Video to hear the various answers. This is a phrase that can sound a little intimidating and jarring. I, myself am new to this industry, and I’m not going to lie—right before working at ImageSource I was intimidated. Prior to my start date, I had repetitive thoughts running through my head, “How am I going to learn and master the Enterprise Content Management industry?” But luckily when I began working at ImageSource these thoughts soon disappeared.

Don’t be fooled by the ECM term, a broad description will make understanding this industry possible. ImageSource is a full service Enterprise Content Management solutions provider and integrator. This means we offer services and infrastructure using paperless technology. Everyone has tons of papers, documents and files. This can range from a small doctor’s office that needs to keep track and organize their patient’s health charts, medical history, insurance, etc. to a larger scale such as an entire city in California: organizing, processing and recording thousands of papers a day. ECM comes in by capturing (such as scanning), organizing and storing all these papers which can be easily retrieved even from a remote location.

Real Life Snippet:
Just yesterday I went to the car dealership to pick up our company car after getting it serviced. Like any other business, you receive services, pay for the services, and then get a receipt.  Upon receiving the receipt my first thought was, “I need to make a copy so I have one for my expense report and so that our accountants have a copy as well.” BUT this is where ImageSource comes in. ImageSource offers a product called ILINX®. And keeping up with the times, we have a smart phone app called ILINX® Capture Mobile. All I had to do was grab my iPhone, open up the app, and capture the receipt by taking a picture. I then typed in some data to index the receipt such as the date, location, and name of the company. The image then converted to a pdf and was immediately e-mailed to my own address. Now when I send in my expense report, I have the receipt ready to go.

My brief personal experience shows that we can even hone down to the individual such as you or me to explore the benefits of ECM and its services– all of which makes our daily lives a bit easier.

Tracy Lim
Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

Taking PeopleSoft to New Heights in Higher Ed

The PeopleSoft ERP system you use for Student Information Services (SIS) has been built to support nationwide and world wide applications. As such, it cannot provide unique challenges for each business need.Typically, we see IT shops and business directors working around the deficiencies in the product in an attempt to meet specific business objectives.  We also see universities purchasing complimentary products to try to meet specific needs and requirements.

From an IT perspective, the cost to write custom code to modify PeopleSoft is prohibitive, or the software simply cannot meet the business objectives. With this in mind, ImageSource, a systems integrator for Oracle, has built several modules for higher education that will have a dramatic effect on how universities conduct business. The integration is codeless, so although we “talk back and forward” to PeopleSoft, there is little requirement to have PeopleSoft technical staff supporting the project.

This new module provides true business workflow that can be designed and built by the business unit, allowing work to be pushed out to the specified knowledge workers. The pilot project recently completed at major California University has been deemed a complete success. This solution now allows them to provide critical real time service to students, parents and faculty.  With the initial implementation in Finance and Student Services, this university is ready to implement the program campus-wide and gain substantial ROI.

If you’d like to know more about how this solution works please email Lynne Butler, ImageSource Higher Ed Business Consultant, at lynneb@imagesourceinc.com

Are Your Documents Controlling You?

As your business grows and expands, so does the paper that supports it. Important information can easily be lost or duplicated because the paper has gotten so out of control.  Your employees are spending hours that could be spent on growing your business even more on manually handling, searching and coping that paper mess.

Now there is an economical, paperless way to do business! ILINX® software gives you the ability to scan, securely store, search, send or share all of your business content.  It doesn’t just have to originate from paper either- you can import Microsoft Office files, email, digital media or just about any other type of file.

Another benefit that ILINX offers is that it works hand in hand with your other business applications. You have the ability to be able to click a button and it will instantly pull up any documentation that relates to what’s currently up on your screen. Without ever leaving your business application! Think about how efficient this will make your office- seamlessly joining together your paperless office with paperless processes.

By having a digital office, it also will allow you secure and quick input and access to all business documents- from anywhere. Any computer, any browser. You will be in complete and total control of your documents. ILINX is also very reliable, scalable and manageable. It is designed to have minimal impact on your IT resources, its user friendly and easy to maintain over time.

Interested in learning more about the technology and making your office go paperless? Check out our webinar:

Jennifer Jepson
ImageSource, Inc.

ECM Moves to Simplicity

A trend worthy of mention in the ECM industry is the move to simpler-to-use products. ImageSource is answering the demand for these streamlined products, not only from an integration point of view, but also by developing our ILINX product line. What is really worth noting is that the products mentioned below are streamlined without sacrificing performance. Let’s explore what simple ECM means for organizations.
Users
From a user’s perspective, ECM is becoming more intuitive, accessible and affordable. Heavyweight capture players like Kofax are applying their expertise to products like Kofax Express, geared for small to mid-sized organizations. It is functional without requiring a lot of training or know-how. Another capture application, ILINX Capture, is web-based, enabling capture at any desktop browser. It has a mobile app, ILINX Capture Mobile for capture without the desktop or laptop. In yet another mobile development, ImageSource recently announced the launch of their ILINX Tablet, the first business-centric tablet to hit the market. Users also appreciate ILINX Integrate, which image enables their line-of-business systems. They can view content from within their primary application without having to open a content repository.

Administrators and IT Professionals
Thin client apps, like ILINX Capture, allow for administration, deployment and maintenance from a central source. Graphical user interfaces allow workflows to be created effortlessly, automating rules and decisions. ILINX Content Store is a supercharged, yet streamlined content repository that is as easy manage as it is to master—and it’s also a web app. The simplicity of all of the products mentioned above mean fewer resources are spent on training and administration.

Organizations
Simple ECM benefits the enterprise on many levels. First, fewer resources are used to deploy and manage information systems. Secondly, as complexity decreases, user adoption improves. Lastly, as ECM is distributed, organizations are able to ingest content from a much wider variety of sources, sooner, so information is available more immediately.

Carol Carbone Jellison
Creative Director, ImageSource

City of Kennewick Launches ECM Solution by Streamlining City Clerk & Payroll Processes

The City of Kennewick, Washington, looked to an ECM solution to help streamline processes. Because of changing economic conditions and a shrinking tax base, Kennewick needed their business processes to enable them to do more with their current resources. As one of Washington’s most progressive cities, Kennewick recognized that implementing a core Enterprise Content Management (ECM) system would help them meet this goal.

To read the entire case study, visit http://imagesourceinc.com.

Organization:
City of Kennewick
www.ci.kennewick.wa.us

Industry:
City Government

Solution:

  • Workflows for Agenda & Payroll
  • eForms

Challenge

  • Required to do more with current resources
  • Paper-intensive processes
  • Manual routing for approvals laborious & expensive
  • Documents difficult to locate
  • Duplication of documents
  • Payroll process labor intensive & error-prone
  • Excessive storage space required

Key Benefits

  • Flexible workflow allowing various approvers depending on need
  • Documents easy to locate and always available
  • Changes are easily accommodated
  • Agenda ePackets are easy to build, distribute to Council & public
  • Most current version of documents accessible across all departments
  • Reduction in storage
  • Infrastructure for storage & electronic workflow can be leveraged city-wide
  • Integration with existing Payroll system improves accuracy
  • Intuitive indexing & validation
  • Automated data entry
  • Payroll processing reduced 90%, or more

Products

Kristina Parma
Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

ILINX® Capture Mobile Now Available!

ImageSource proudly released ILINX® Capture Mobile, an iPhone app to quickly and easily capture information on the go!

ILINX Capture Mobile allows users to capture an image of anything – receipts, notes, etc. – attach keywords or index values to the document, and email a copy back to yourself. ILINX Capture Mobile is a mobile accessory of ILINX Capture, a browser-based capture software tool that automates the capture of information from both paper and electronic sources. Once the document is processed, it can be delivered to a variety of digital formats to systems that manage business processes. Images capture with ILINX Capture Mobile for the iPhone can be further indexed, grouped, converted and routed with the full version of ILINX Capture.

Check out ILINX Capture Mobile and make sure to download the app to your iPhone!

For more information on document capture, going paperless and to get information from experts in the ECM industry, then you don’t want to miss Nexus ’10. Nexus ’10 is ImageSource’s annual ECM Solutions Conference. Right now, Nexus ’10 is only $295 until June 15! However, for an additional $100 off, use discount code BLOG100. For more information about Nexus or to register for the event, visit http://NexusECM.com.

Kristina Parma
Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.
@KristinaParma

 

Top Reasons to Capture Data from an 11-Year-Old’s Perspective!

I am new to the world of Document Imaging and Capture in general.  As of this year it has been one of the things I think and talk about most. Over dinner with my family and in the car I often share things about what I do and how it helps people.   My 11-year-old daughter shares some of her ideas on why capture is important and helpful in her life.

1. Art work and keep sakes from over the years can be scanned and kept forever!

2. Art work and photos can be scanned and shared with grandparents, family, and friends with ease and speed.

3. She doesn’t have to make multiple copies she can make one piece of art and share it with endless people.

4. She can upload pictures and art to her blog and Facebook.

5. If she captures art and uploads it to our family blog, we will have it forever from anywhere she has access to the internet all over the world.

6. She can scan things she works on that parents would make her throw away. i.e.( Homemade I Love Justin Bieber Posters)

7. It helps make space in her room

8. It is green and “everyone” is doing it!

9. She can scan something and email it her parents for our approval in a matter of seconds instead of waiting till we get home to read the document on the fridge (or forget to read it at all)

10.  She can look at memories from second grade school work when she wants vs, having to ask if Dad if he will get the 2nd Grade Memory Box out of the garage ?   (The answer is always “not today”)

10. If we ever had a flood in the garage she would still have the memories that are precious to all of us.

After thinking about the things that are important to an 11-year-old, I realized that these same things carry over to the business world.

Capturing Data is important for these reasons:

  1. Archiving
  2. Save’s Money and Save’s Time
  3. Save’s Space
  4. Disaster Recovery
  5. Productivity Gains
  6. Security
  7. Collaboration
  8. Customer Satisfaction
  9. Regulatory Compliance
  10. Green Initiatives

Sometimes thinking of things through a child’s eyes simplifies the process.  Children help us to see things much clearer.

“The complex develops out of the simple.” – Collin Wilson

Check Out the new i-phone app for ILINX ® Capture

Geetha French- ECMP

Account Executive

ImageSource, Inc.

Phone 360.943.9273

www.imagesourceinc.com

How Many Organizations Have Initiatives to Truncate Content at its Source?

I’m sitting in the local IBM ECM UserNet conference in Irvine and David Caldera, Product Marketing,  is speaking about the IBM/FileNet road-map.  He has communicated, and it is proven, that there is huge ROI in deploying ECM solutions in an enterprise.   Many companies have jumped on the ECM bandwagon and have implemented storage and retrieval in their enterprise.  But, how many have taken the initiative to actually truncate content at its source?  What does this mean: truncate content at its source?

To truncate content at its source,  I am referencing an initiative to keep electronic documents as electronic documents (i.e. not printing out the Word Document or Excel Spreadsheet for review), utilize fax server technology and ingest faxes as images (ingesting faxes directly in to a capture application so meta data can be attached to it and accessed through a repository),  take in outside content as EDI and leave it as EDI (by utilizing COLD technology and storing it with users being able to view the content with template overlays),  and leave email messages and their attachments in their electronic format (by capturing the email, ingest the email’s content and strip off the attachment so that it can be preserved in the repository in electronic form).  A truly GREEN organization.

How can we help enterprises achieve this?  One method is to simplify the process that content is captured at the end user.  This may include embedding capture technology in every day applications like Word and Excel.  A simple to use “button” placed in the application that evokes a simple window that allows the user to fill in one or two key meta data fields – like Kofax currently offers with Kofax Desktop and ImageSource offers with ILINX ® Capture.  Another option is to leverage existing multifunction devices, having a capture application sweep the directory and push some light indexing or not, back to the submitter or sending it to a central data processing center.  Most importantly, capturing the content in-process!

In-Process Capture through thin client applications is the most consistent and efficient way to truncate content at its source.  Enabling knowledge workers to submit content as part of their process, versus at the end of their process.  All knowledge workers, not just high volume workers, having this capability.  Leveraging ad-hoc, highly distributed capture processes throughout an enterprise.   For example, the executive assistant who has contracts, high dollar Purchase Orders, NDA’s, HR documents, or regulatory submissions being able to commit these documents right in to the repository or workflow.  Another example, to enable agents or sales people in the field to submit claims, reports or expenses from their automobile, prior to leaving the customers parking lot, so that financial transaction can be processed immediately.

Some organizations “think green.”  Its time now for these companies to go to the next step and put their IT projects behind these eco-friendly initiatives.

“How Social Networking, Mobile Computing & the Millennial Workforce will Shape Corporate America”

I wanted to take an opportunity to tell you about a great Executive Roundtable event, “How Social Networking, Mobile Computing & the Millennial Workforce will Shape Corporate America”, that we are holding at the Hyatt Regency in Newport Beach, CA on February 5, 2010 from 9:00am to 10:30am.

I am certain that, like all companies, you are facing a new set of Social technology dynamics and have concerns on such things as security, compliance, and archiving. This event will provide a open platform discussion among business executives on how current technologies for Social Media and Mobile Devices are changing and shaping the way we do business and process our information. Also, new generations (Gen Y) are entering our workforce. They have been educated and are accustomed to using these tools to Capture, Connect, and Share their information immediately. It is the new generation workforces and our constant need for information that will be changing the future of your business processes.

I hope that you will take the time to join us! Seating is limited and there is no cost to attend.

Register now!

 

How ECM Solutions can help Reduce Your Organization’s Cost and Carbon Footprint.

Happy New Year! Let’s go to work on Monday and save some trees and the environment! With the New Year upon us, it is a good time to review the way your organization manages its manual paper processes, i.e., Invoice Workflow, HR documentation, etc.

It has been my experience that once an organization has made the decision to investment into an Enterprise Content Management solution, they have significantly reduced the amount of manual processes, which in turn reduces cost and streamlines a once slow manual process. While this is a great thing and usually the main reason organizations make this investment, many have not considered the environmental benefit that an ECM solution can bring. I reflect back to the time that I worked in an office, that did not employ such technologies, and I remember all the paper that I used in order to share information. Did you know that the average American office worker is estimated to use a sheet of paper every 12 minutes—a ream per person every two and a half working weeks—and to dispose of 100-200 pounds of paper every year? Think about that statistic!  That is just one employee. Studies have also shown that the number of pages consumed in U.S. offices is growing by about 20% each year. This is huge when you think about this on a national and global scale. Because of this unnecessary paper creation, forests are being depleted and there is more pollution due to the creation and disposal of this paper. Over the years we have all gotten a little more conscious about recycling, however, only about 45% of the paper generated in the U.S. is recovered.

So with all of this said… what the solution is? One solution is to capture documentation when the document enters the organization. One can do this by using ILINX Capture to scan the document, once this is done the document no longer needs to be copied or recreated, it is now in electronic format. Better yet, if the document is email or faxed, ILINX can pull right from the source, electronically, and it never has to be printed at all, viola you have already saved a tree. That handles the capture aspect, but what about sharing information. Instead of a having a 200 page document copied five times to reviewed in a meeting, through ECM it can be easliy scanned an distributed electronically with our Image/Process Management Software. Now, I can write about many other bad habits that are due to not have having information electronically, but let’s talk about some real numbers. A Global Manufacture estimates an up to $10 billion cost reduction in the coming years through digitizing many of its processes. This company also has identified approximately $1.5 billion in potential cost-savings, WOW! A large Gas Company has saved 100 tons of paper and $320,000 through the use of making their processes electronic. A Global Aerospace company estimates savings of 8 million sheets of paper and $250,000 by digitizing one of its 100-page manuals.

So, when we all get back to the office from the holiday season, rethink what you do and what your organization does when it comes to collecting and sharing information. If you feel like you would like to learn more feel free to contact us ImageSource.

Happy New Year!

Shon D. Mueller
Senior Account Executive
ImageSource, Inc.
www.imagesourceinc.com

 

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.

In-Process Capture: Who Needs It?

Enterprise imaging and capture has been deployed in most large organizations around the world for many years.  This includes pushing capture out to remote sites in a semi-centralized way.  This approach still has a great deal of overhead in terms of support, maintenance, infrastructure costs, and many times postage to this more localized site.  What if every company could leverage their existing office equipment to capture content at the source, whether it is the organization itself or its customers/partners, to get content in as part of their normal work process?

Inserting capture in-process allows service level agreements to be achieved or even exceeded, move content/images through the organization quicker and more efficiently, and leverage the knowledge worker’s expertise who are  in front of the customer in a limited, yet simple,  efficient manner.  Who could benefit from this?  Well, just about every company.

If you are a retail organization setting up a new credit account – imagine scanning the document on the local printer/scanner and it goes off to the financial institution without keying in anything.  So, the cashier can ring other customers as the approval is being sought.  If you’re a distribution company who just dropped off a pallet of goods to a center and that signature can be scanned in from the truck, with an internet connection, to the accounting department to generate an invoice that same day?  Or if you’re a financial services organization and you have high valued customers out on the golf course and you want to get their application in and an account number generated before going to the next hole?  What about a physician’s office who needs to provide a referral, prescription or orders for surgery to a hospital, doctor or pharmacy, so that by the time your really sick patient arrives the process or prescription has already been issued?

Lets start saving some trees,  maximizing efficiency and providing real customer service with in-process capture!

Michelle Semple
ImageSource, Inc.

Is ECM a Green Technology?

Going green is getting easier as technology develops.  The “paperless office” utopia is still being developed but the amount of paper can be, and is being dramatically reduced due to document imaging and content management solutions.  It is a fairly straightforward concept – if a business process begins with physical paper, why not scan it, index it, and store it where multiple people can access, it is secure, traceable and auditable, and it adheres to your corporate records policy?  This concept does not only save your organization money, but it does reduce the environmental impact of doing business.

It is easy to see the savings in industries such as Health Care and Financial Services.  In Health Care the green factor and carbon footprint reduction relates to the courier cost, fax cost, copying cost of duplicating patient records and insurance correspondence.  This is a huge magnitude when you consider the general health of the population.   Financial Services green footprint is also correlated with courier and copying but also in the workflow process to route documents.

There is great information published on this topic at various sites such as AIIM , and also at AIIM.  There is also interesting case examples at  New and Good in ECM.

Distributed scanning  can also have a directly positive impact on a green initiative.  Capturing documents and data at the point of creation or receipt will save on shipping and courier services which also impacts the environment by reducing the oil consumption in transportation.

The digitizing of documents greatly reduces off-site storage costs which also has a direct effect on oil consumption used in the transportation to and from the storage facilities.

Much of the transition from paper to electronic comes with the paradigm shift from physically handling paper to viewing documents and data and routing them from the computer.  This takes time and facilitates true change management disciplines but the amount of money, efficiencies, and resources saved can be tremendous.  To be successful, you need to plan for the initial pushback from the knowledge workers.  In the beginning, they might even print more than what they were before the implementation.  If change is managed correctly, the users will adopt and embrace the efficiencies.

The going green concept is growing and is a focal point of the upcoming Nexus ECM Conference held on Nov 2-3 in Bellevue, WA.  Take a look at the Nexus Agenda for some of the “green” sessions.

Comments and feedback welcome.

Jeff Blissett
Senior Account Executive
ImageSource, Inc.
www.imagesourceinc.com

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.

 

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.

Going Green with Document Imaging

Green business isn’t just talk anymore!  Many companies today are working on Green Initiatives to make them more environmentally friendly.  One popular initiative is to go “paperless” and implement a document imaging system.  What could be more environmentally friendly than saving some paper, hence saving trees?  Document management reduces paper creation, storage requirements, and travel costs.  Online forms and signature eliminate paper at the source.  There are many resources on Green Initiatives in the document imaging world provided by participating in groups such as AIIM, ARMA, and attending conferences that discuss these initiatives such as the ImageSource conference, “Nexus.”

When it comes to deciding what kind of scanners you need for your document imaging system, many companies are taking a harder look at which manufactures are producing environmentally friendly equipment.  Some concerns include what type of chemicals used in the products, energy-saving modes, duplexing options, and if the manufacture recycles.  Compared to other office equipment, (According to the EPA)  a scanner consumes significantly less energy than a photocopier, resulting in lower green house gases.

American office workers use four million tons of copy paper annually, equivalent to 10,000 sheets of copy paper per worker.  If the United States were to reduce office paper by 10%, 1.6 million tons of greenhouse gases could be eliminated, the same as removing 280,000 cars from the road.  As more companies implement document management systems, their paper creation and use goes down and therefore create less greenhouse gases.  Although our world is far from being completely paperless, we are surely making great strides in that direction and lessening our footprint on the environment in the process.

Andrea Latham, CDIA+

Inside Sales

ImageSource, Inc.

Phone 360.943.9273

www.imagesourceinc.com

ECM Best Practices: Document Capture

We are going to start a series of blogs called the “ECM Best Practices” series. This series will cover a range of topics for the next six weeks, including ECM Training, Hot Trends in ECM, Document Scanning, Document Capture, Green Solutions and Integration with ERP.

This week, I am going to focus on Document Capture. Document capture makes life easier and allows us to get more done with less time and fewer resources. Manual processes are both labor intensive and time consuming. Document capture allows employees to perform tasks with speed and accuracy.

Companies today need to look at utilizing Distributed Capture in addition to Centralized Capture. Distributed capture gives organizations the freedom to scan and capture information at remote locations, instead of mailing documents to one central location. Having a central hub is important in scanning, but having distributed capture in addition is necessary to reduce costs, improve accuracy and save time.

One of the hottest capture products on the market today is ILINX Capture. ILINX Capture is a web-based capture product that allows you to capture information anywhere, anytime, any place. Compared to traditional capture products, ILINX Capture costs significantly less and takes less time to deploy and train users. This thin-client application is perfect for small to medium-sized businesses who are looking to improve efficiencies, or for large businesses who are in need of a capture product that can handle large volumes of documents.ILINX Capture

On November 2nd and 3rd, ILINX Capture will be showcased at ImageSource’ s annual ECM Solutions Conference, Nexus, in Bellevue, Wash. This conference is a great opportunity for anyone who is looking for educational content and industry-specific training. The conference will have speakers from Microsoft, Oracle, Cardiff, Bowe Bell & Howell, as well as from ImageSource. There will be a breakout session on Distributed Capture, a two-part session on the new ILINX products, including ILINX Capture, as well as a keynote on the importance of capture.

To register for Nexus, or to learn more about the conference, visit www.NexusECM.com.

To learn more about ILINX Capture, visit www.ilinxcapture.com. For additional information, read this blog post about ILINX Capture.

Kristina Parma
Corporate Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

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Distributed Scanning – Sales Perspective

“This is going to be the year that document imaging really takes off.  This is the year…………. “.  The adoption of storing files with a standard naming convention on shared drives is still being forced around corporate America when the technology has been around for 20 years to securely scan, index, store, and retrieve in a single repository.  What makes us think that the concept of having scanners at every desk or even on the same physical floor is going to catch on in the 20 years?

“When it is easy enough for the CEO to scan documents from his office, we know that document imaging is mainstream. “ In the industry, we have all heard this claim of the past 20 years.  We have had visions of every organization, big or small, regardless of industry, deploying scanners and efficiently capturing paper documents at the source of receipt.  Multi-Function Devices (copiers that scan and fax) have now become mainstream where most people are comfortable in scanning a document and feel comfortable with the concept. – This is the easy part.  The reason we still fight with adoption is that traditional document capture  software that allows for the scanning  and indexing, has been difficult to understand, use AND had to be loaded on every person’s desktop that wanted to scan and index their documents.

Internet security, reduced file sizes, increased bandwidth, web services, and development of web parts have all been in development high gear.  Companies that have been focusing on these technologies and disciplines have made significant breakthroughs in the Distributed Capture / Remote Scanning marketplace.  See Kofax, Cardiff, EMC / Captiva, ImageSource / ILINX, Oracle / Captovation, ReadSoft.  Out are the complex interfaces that require understanding of terms such as batches, document classes, OCR.  In are the simple interfaces that allow for the scanning at a push of a single button, simple drop down menus, and few key strokes.  Web based scanning applications should be commonplace where the user can scan a document from anywhere, provide simple indexing functionality, start a workflow, and have the document committed to the secure repository.  The concept of “collecting” documents and taking / sending / Fed Ex’ing them to the mail room or scanning supervisor for processing is now not necessary / antiquated / a big waste of time.  The technology is here and now.

Distributed Capture solutions should be thin client, scalable, not linked to a page count, able to support multiple ECM systems, and require little to no training.   This shouldn’t be too much to ask.

How long is it going to take to get the message out to the masses?  Will this be the year of distributed capture?  Comments and feedback welcome.

Jeff Blissett
Senior Account Executive
ImageSource, Inc.

 

Distributed Capture – Good for the Environment and Your Bottom Line

Capturing information in one location is so “old school.”

Traditional means of capturing paper documents and converting them to digital images has been the norm for way too long. It has for the most part been a centralized process. Companies and organizations send their documents to one location to be scanned and have the information captured. This way of doing business is costly and not the most environmentally friendly option.

Distributed capture is a way for companies to capture information in a variety of locations instead of sending those documents to a central location to be scanned. This is a much more eco-friendly approach, as well as better for your bottom line. Businesses don’t have to spend money sending documents to the central location or on wasted time. They can be much more productive.

The Internet has truly made distributed capture the easiest way to capture information and index efficiently. With products out there like ILINX Capture, users can “SCAN in Seoul, INDEX in Istanbul, APPROVE in Amsterdam, STORE in Seattle!” Because it’s web-based, ILINX Capture gives users the ability to capture information anywhere in the world.

Products like ILINX Capture are both reasonably priced (good for the wallet), and because it’s browser-based, good for the environment.

For more information about ILINX Capture, visit the web site at www.ilinxcapture.com.

ILINX Capturewill also be shown at ImageSource’s ECM Solutions Conference, Nexus 09. To register for Nexus 09 or to learn more about the conference, visit www.NexusECM.com.

Kristina Parma
Corporate Communications Manager
ImageSource, Inc.

Distributed Capture vs. Paper Processing

It’s obvious but no one wants to admit it. We walk past the rows of files cabinets and do not see them. We’ve always used paper to help us get our work done.  Why change? Because manual processing of paper is a huge productivity killer.

I find it hard to believe that a knowledge worker gets great joy out of retyping information into two or three internal systems or filing documents into those invisible filing cabinets or running files to all appropriate approvers in the work process (and then making a copy for each worker for their personal files.)  Snicker, snicker right?

Imaging isn’t new; scanning isn’t a sexy technology. But in tough economic times with workers faced with furlough days and the same work (if not more) to be completed, it is needs to be addressed. It doesn’t have to be difficult. With the onset of multi-functional devices (the copier, printer, fax and scanning machines) and distributed scanning products like ILINX Capture, the process has been simplified and the financial investment is very competitive.

Imagine the new work day; work is moved electronically to your desk (computer). The “electronic paperwork” is moved to the proper knowledge professional by the computer, not by a person. Time to process takes days instead of weeks. Reminders for work tasks are programmatic (say goodbye to the sticky notes on your computer display). Access to information is readily available at your computer.

Is there anything cool or sexy about managing content electronically? Yep, it’s a green technology. How many trees are cut annually for reams of paper (shipped in cardboard boxes) and file folders? How many copies are made each day so workers have access to information? How about the power consumption from the printers and copy machines? How many metal file cabinets sit in our landfills? You get my point….

You are valuable to your organization because of your expertise. Be a little selfish, choose to enhance your skill set. Inspire your organization to explore the reality of enterprise imaging (scanning) and work-flow products. Learn More at Nexus 2009 and Go Green!

Christie Whitney
Senior Account Executive
ImageSource, Inc.

Enterprise Content Through Mobile Devices

With an estimated 75 million Millennials entering the workforce in the near future, organizations need to adjust the way they make their critical business information available. The newest generation of workers will require access that is both immediate and mobile. Blackberrys, iPhones, Netbooks and other mobile devices are driving the need to make information digital and deliverable on demand.
Helping to make anyplace the office-place, mobile devices also drive efficiencies and the immediacy through which information is received and disseminated. Enterprise-wide content infrastructure manages information going to, and coming from, mobile devices securely through workflow, portals and networks. Additionally, it can bridge the gap between mobile devices and other line-of-business systems processes.

Carol Jellison
Creative Director
ImageSource, Inc.