Kainos, a leading IT consulting company, has announced the successful delivery of an integrated document and records management project at the Eastern Health & Social Services Board, Northern Ireland's largest health and social services organisation.
As a largely administrative organisation, EHSSB relies on effective document management and workflow to perform efficiently and effectively. Yet it was the imperative to comply with the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act which provided the recent impetus to transform the Board's records management activities once and for all. EHSSB enlisted the help of independent IT consultancy Kainos to help formulate a strategy to implement a centralised electronic document and records management system [EDRMS].
Kainos recommended an EDRMS system from Meridio, a Microsoft Gold Partner, which works well with Microsoft Outlook, enabling the effortless integration of email into the records management process. Kainos also provided expertise and advice on the integration of the new EDRMS system with workers' mobile devices, including BlackBerries, so that employees could be fully productive wherever they are. After an initial pilot the system went live right across the EHSSB, where it is now the core single records system.
EHSSB is already experiencing a host of benefits from its EDRMS solution. These include the ability to share documents very easily and in a managed way, without having to circulate content via email. Importantly, emails are now managed alongside other records in compliance with information management legislation, as the decision-making process can now be firmly tracked across email threads. Meanwhile, the central storage of documents means less demands on email capacity and bandwidth, with version control ensuring greater accuracy and consistency, and saving time and duplication.
Reliance on paper copies of documents is beginning to be eliminated, too. "People are now increasingly taking laptops to meetings, not paper," comments Mark Eustace, Systems Development Manager at EHSSB. As well as being more efficient, this helps EHSSB meets its responsibilities towards the environment.
Having the comprehensive support from Kainos has proved vital, too. "We couldn't have done it without them," Mark says. "They have been excellent, and a pleasure to work with. The technical people really know their stuff which saved us several days of potential downtime when the server hardware developed a problem recently."
In addition to continuing work on the mobile extension of the EDRMS, EHSSB is currently investigating the Microsoft Sharepoint application for possible future use, an application that would integrate easily with the Meridio EDRM system.
Deirdre O'Neill is Delivery Manager at Kainos and adds, "We are delighted with the success of this project which is testament to the strength of the working partnership that we forged with the EHSSB team. We have a very strong document and records management knowledge pool and we are experiencing great demand for our services around these technologies which deliver very immediate and visible benefits."
Kainos designs and implements IT solutions that make businesses perform better. The company was founded in 1986 and is headquartered in Belfast with offices in Dublin, London and Gdansk. Kainos employs over 260 consultants and it prides itself on the quality of its people; client focused, reliable, dedicated and they understand how technology can be used to its best advantage. Kainos' customers include some of the biggest names in both private and public sector throughout the UK and Ireland, including AIB, the Audit Commission, Shipowners, Bank of Ireland, Hibernian, Northern reland Civil Service, the Information Commissioners Office and permanent tsb. For more information, see www.kainos.com.
The Eastern Health and Social Services Board (EHSSB), based in Belfast, is the largest health and social care commissioning organisation in Northern Ireland with responsibility for the care of some 665,000 people who live within its area. Its purpose is to seek a comprehensive range of quality health and social services for local people. For more information please visit www.ehssb.n-i.nhs.uk.