Records Management Blog | Practical Records Management

Scanning Services for Microsoft Sharepoint - including Sharepoint 2010

Posted by Michael Thomas on Wed, May 12, 2010 @ 08:24 AM
With today marking the official release of Microsoft Sharepoint 2010, I thought it would be an appropriate time to discuss some of the services that we provide to support companies that are moving forward with Sharepoint at the center of their Document Management Strategy.

Sharepoint Scanning ServicesTo be sure, Microsoft has invested a lot of time and resources in improving upon previous iterations of Sharepoint, and the technology has come a long way since it's initial release. Today, I would not be alone in considering Sharepoint as one of the market leaders in the ECM (Enterprise Content Management) space, and we've been proponents of recommending it to clients when appropriate.

One of the challenges, however, is efficiently capturing paper content and delivering it to Sharepoint so that it can be searched and retrieved by users. There are many products available in the market to address this challenge, including Kofax Capture and KnowledgeLake - both of which are excellent solutions.

But what about Companies that want to leverage the benefits of Sharepoint without purchasing high-speed scanners and investing the time and resources in scanning the files themselves?

That's where our outsourced scanning services for Sharepoint come in. Our Production Document Scanning Bureau is capable of converting millions of pages on a monthly basis, and provides firms with a low price per page to convert paper to digital format. We handle the document preparation, scanning, quality control, and indexing, and return to clients a series of files that can be easily imported to Sharepoint.

Whether you're using an older version of the Sharepoint platform, or you plan to take advantage of the features that Sharepoint 2010 has to offer, consider outsourcing the scanning of your files. You'll be able to achieve a more rapid return on your document management investment, and save yourself a whole lot of hassle in the process.


Ready to take the first Step to getting your files scanned to Sharepoint?
Contact us today to discuss your Document Scanning Project and find out how our services can help lower your costs and accelerate your return on investment.

Tags: ECM, Scanning, Document Scanning, Sharepoint

Who Owns Document Management in Your Company?

Posted by Michael Thomas on Wed, Apr 28, 2010 @ 05:54 PM
Free Records Management bookI'm not the first person to say it won't be the last but there's too much jargon and too many buzzwords thrown around by vendors today. Regardless of the technology that you're looking at, these are just complicated acronyms used to describe the different ways you can go about doing simple tasks. In the document management space I find that people are frequently bewildered by terms like ECM (Enteprise Content Management), ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning), WCM (Web Content Management), and RIM (Records and Information Management). If it's this hard just to identify what we're going to call document management, imaging how difficult it is to define who should take ownership of this function in an organization.

Let me try and make this simple. Document management is the practice of organizing and accessing information relating to the transactions and operation of an organization. If you don't like my definition that's fine, but we'd likely be arguing about semantics at that point. There's just not much more to it. Document management is simple, and in many instances it doesn't require dedicated or complicated software, or a department of people to manage it. Effective Document Management requires some planning and foresight to understand the challenges relating to two things - Organizing and Access.

For many organizations of a certain size, the person who's primarily responsible for document management has a title that actually makes sense, Records Manager. In these organizations the records manager is charged with defining detailed policies and procedures relating to the retention and retrieval of information. Oftentimes the records manager has specialized training and experience and really understands what's required to effectively manage the information of an organization. These organizations stand to benefit over time from the expertise only a true records manager can provide.

In the majority of organizations, however, this responsibility is left scattered across many departments and ultimately falls on senior management (within a regular corporate structure), an office manager (within medical and legal practices), or the business owner themselves (in many small businesses or Professional Firms). In addition to these roles many companies find ways to leave IT professionals, HR managers, and accounting staff each with a piece of the document management pie. In these instances the results are often less than stellar, as the lack of centralized focus creates fragmented processes and presents the organization with undue risk.

Think about your business. Do you have a detailed records management plan in place? Does your staff utilize a consistent methodology for organizing and accessing information? Are you adhering to retention schedules? If the answer is no, then now is the time to re-examine your document management plans. Remember to keep things in perspective - document management requires a little bit of strategy to deliver fantastic returns. If you don't have the expertise or the resources in-house, consider relying on a partner to fill the role of records manager and help with your document management needs. Whatever option you choose don't underestimate the value that an effective document management strategy can have, and don't let a lack of strategy be your excuse for inaction.


Tags: ECM, Document Management, Records Management, Business Strategy

Scanning Mortgage Files post-close. Does it make sense?

Posted by Michael Thomas on Wed, Apr 21, 2010 @ 05:32 PM
As someone who spent the better part of the decade working with lending companies on improving loan processing through Document-Driven Workflow, I've always thought that it doesn't make much sense to scan alone file after it's closed. Recently, however, I've realized that I was wrong. While the benefit of scanning loan files post-close may not be as strong as driving the process using workflow, there's a lot to be gained by scanning loan documents after the loan has been closed. Let's take a look at three main reasons why:

Loan Sale - Although the market in 2010 is not quite as hot as it once was, the loan sale industry is still alive and well. For Originators, increased competition and a wider pool of available options for buyers has forced competitive differentiation in any way possible. The ability to provide closed loan files in a convenient image format is one way to do this. Scanning mortgage loans post close and creating a series of PDFs or TIF images allows for faster transfer to the secondary market, meaning faster access to payment.

Mortgage File ScanningServicing - Loan Servicing is one piece of the business that never seems to change. In spite of all the advances in online technology, there are still a number of questions that require reference back to the original loan files. Being able to access these files directly through the origination system in an image format, while customers are on the phone, improves client satisfaction and reduces costs for the servicer.

Foreclosures - The dreaded "F" word has led many lenders to go back and image archived loans. When a Lender is able to quickly provide all the required paperwork relating to a loan, they stand a better chance of success during foreclosure proceedings. In fact one of the most common causes for judgments against mortgage companies is the inability to produce an original note. Even if the note is available, many lenders have found that the onerous task of rifling through countless papers to find that precious document has been a costly process.

I continue to be a proponent of using document management and workflow for mortgage lending, as the efficiency gains by capturing documents accurately during the loan origination process provide significant savings and increased compliance. However, for those organizations that either have cultural or process-related obstacles to implementing workflow, the concept of scanning loan documentation post-close still holds great appeal. In a more competitive marketplace, the improved customer service and reduced wait times that scanned files can provide leads to happier borrowers, and as market conditions improve, hopefully more repeat business.

Tags: ECM, Document Management, Document Scanning

Document management Software - Why we sell PaperVision AND OnBase

Posted by Michael Thomas on Tue, Apr 20, 2010 @ 02:48 PM
If you're looking for Document Management Software to help your business perform more efficiently and reduce operating costs, we offer two unique document management software programs to help  meet your needs. Why two products you might ask? Because in our 15 years of experience we've learned that no two companies have the same document management needs, and that no one product can solve everybody's problems.

If you are looking for a low-cost document management solution to allow you to search and retrieve files directly from the desktop or web browser PaperVision Enterprise is a fantastic solution. Featuring an easy-to-use, easy to customize interface, PaperVision Enterprise can meet the needs of most companies. PaperVision also has the tools to allow you to annotate documents, print your files, and e-mail documents directly from the user interface. PaperVision also has the ability to incorporate simple workflow and drive business process using automated rules, routing, and roles. PaperVision is also the software behind ImageSilo, the world's leading hosted document management solution, so scalability is never really a concern.

For companies with more advanced document management requirements, including workflow and deep integrations with line of business applications, we also offer OnBase. Developed by Hyland Software, OnBase is True Enterprise Content Management. Onbase Software provides a seamless solution to deliver documents to line of business applications in support for transactions that take place during normal operations. Two hallmarks of the OnBase solution are their sophisticated workflow capabilities, allowing dynamic routing of documents based on individual document characteristics, and their award-winning Application Enabler, which provides direct integration with virtually any other application without the need for custom programming.

Selecting the right document management software for your business is not an easy task, and that's why our team of professionals can help make recommendations as to the right solution to meet your business requirements. If you're in the market for a solution to help you reduce costs and improve efficiency and ensure regulatory compliance, contact one of our solutions consultants to talk about your specific requirements and help make the decision as to whether PaperVision Enterprise or OnBase is the right solution for you.

Tags: ECM, Paperless Office, Document Management, Document Scanning, Document Imaging

PaperVision Enterprise R70 Now Available

Posted by Michael Thomas on Tue, Apr 20, 2010 @ 10:55 AM

Today marks the Official Release of PaperVision Enterprise R70, which features over 25 enhancements including Document Associations (Cross Liking Documents) and folder capabilities. These new features will help deliver additional value for clients already using PaperVision Enterprise and had a new level of functionality for clients who are looking to use the system.

PaperVision Enterprise, made by Digitech Systems is an easy-to-use document management software solution that allows you to search and retrieve documents using either a desktop client or web browser, both of which are included with the software. With the release of R70, PaperVision now features folder-based views of documents to make users more comfortable with the familiar interface the folders provide. In addition, R70 of PaperVision enables users to create relationships between documents and link them together based on common index values.

Equally as important is the ability to now display duplicate documents in detail sets as a single line item in the search screen results and to allow users to expand the view to see duplicates on the same screen. This functionality is important when there are one to many or many to one relationships between documents. A good example of this is an accounting environment when a single check may be used to pay multiple invoices or when multiple checks may be used to pay a single invoice.

PaperVision R70 is available as a free upgrade to current PaperVision Enterprise users with current maintenance and it's included with each new license of PaperVision Enterprise. For more information about PaperVision Enterprise and to find out about implementing this solution for your organization contact Shoreline Records Management online or give us a call at 866-No-Paper (866-667-2737).

Tags: ECM, Paperless Office, Document Management

OnBase 9.2 Released by Hyland Software

Posted by Michael Thomas on Thu, Mar 11, 2010 @ 06:27 PM

OnBase 9.2 has been released by Hyland Software, and there are many new features that will continue to deliver value to clients looking for Enterprise Content Management solutions, as well as those who have already invested in the OnBase ECM Platform. 

Continuing to build on the customer focused approach that has provided Hyland Software and the OnBase product with such a loyal customer following, OnBase 9.2 offers clients significant capability enhancements including a new User Interface Experience (Unity), Workflow Integrations for Blackberry, and a new Offline Client that will expand the ability to use OnBase in remote locations without network or internet connections. 

OnBase Authorized Solution ProviderAs an OnBase Certified Solution Provider, Shoreline Records Management is proud to increase the value that we bring to our clients Enterprise Content Management initiatives with the release of OnBase 9.2. "I think some of the features in OnBase 9.2 will continue to truly differentiate OnBase from other ECM Vendors." Said Thomas J. Olivieri, Chief Technology Officer for Shoreline. "For Example, the Mobile Workflow for Blackberry shows a great commitment to delivering the solutions that customers are requesting. I'm glad that we've been able to work with such a customer-focused partner." 

Prospective Clients Interested in Learning more about OnBase should visit ShorelineRecordsManagement.com or Hyland.com, and existing clients should contact Account Manager. Also, be sure to check out Hyland Software's new Blog at Blog.Hyland.com.

Tags: ECM, Paperless Office, OnBase

Need Temporary Scanning Help? Why it's better to Outsource.

Posted by Michael Thomas on Thu, Mar 11, 2010 @ 03:56 PM

 

If you've started the process of scanning documents and files and you're feeling like it may be an impossible task, you're not alone. Countless companies have gone down the road of using their own, existing personnel to help scan paper documents to digital images, only to realize that the task is more cumbersome than initially anticipated. The first place to turn is often to think that you need to employ temporary scanning help, but often outsourced file scanning is an even better option.

Temporary Scanning Help -If you choose to employ temporary scanning help, you're subjected to paying an hourly rate that may or may not be tied to performance. It will be in the best interest of your scanning temp to take as long as possible to scan your files, which may be the complete opposite of what you need from a business perspective.

Outsourced Scanning Service - When you use an outsourced scanning service, you will be contracting for a price per image, not a price per hour. This put the responsibility on the outsourced scanning service provider to capture your documents more quickly. The result is improved turnaround and faster access, which means more value from your scanning investment.

Temporary Scanning Help -Temporary Scanning Help is not accountable for their work. If your scanning temp doesn't do a quality job and ensure that your content is captured accurately, you won't be able to find your files when you need them later on. Even worse, that scanning temp has already moved on, and is no longer available to correct their mistakes.

Outsourced Scanning Service - Outsourced Scanning Services will enable you to leverage  the benefit of experience and process control, ensuring quality right from the start. In addition, if there are issues with the quality of the scanning work, you'll be able to contact the outsourced scanning partner to help provide resolution because they will want to ensure positive customer relationships.

There are no magic wands when it comes to scanning paper documents to digital images. It takes focus and attention to detail to ensure that a user will retrieve a meaningful image when they make a request or query. In the end, it is usually best to trust this responsibility to a team of trained professionals than a group of temporary scanning resources.

 

Tags: ECM, Paperless Office, Scanning

Choosing the right DPI for Business Document Scanning

Posted by Michael Thomas on Mon, Mar 08, 2010 @ 01:43 PM

If you choose to Scan and Store Business Documents Electronically, be cautious about the DPI (Dots Per Inch) that you choose to scan the files. There are many reasons to be cautious in selecting the appropriate DPI, including the desired level of clarity, readability, file storage requirements, and the type of image you're capturing.

For most Standard Business Documents, 200 DPI Bitonal (Black and White) should be adequate.

If you choose to Store files at a higher resolution, keep in mind that there are significant impacts to the size of the file. For Example:

A Standard office Document Scanned at 200 DPI, Bitonal as a TIF will be around 41K. The File will be Readable, and should be able to be emailed and downloaded fairly easily. At 300 DPI,  Bitonal, that same file balloons to 62K, which is still relatively small, but may consume much more space as you scan more pages.  Now here is where this gets interesting, if you choose to scan the same file at 150 DPI in Color, the file size increases to 164KB. There are a few reasons for this, most of which require big words like "bilinear interpolation", but the point is that you need to be sure to use the appropriate settings when scanning files to ensure that you use the appropriate amount of storage, and don't create bloated, slow-moving files.

What are your best suggestions for DPI Settings? Be sure to add your input in the comments!

Tags: ECM, Paperless Office, Scanning, Scanners