Kodak and Paradigm put Sandwell Council back in control of its document management process

Kodak announces that Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Councils dedicated in-house temporary office staff agency, Templink, is using a new scanning system that has saved an estimated 80% of the operations office space and over 30 hours a week of staff time.  The new system uses KODAK i40 scanners and is managed by Paradigm, a software consultancy specialising in solving document management problems.

Templink meets the councils short-term staffing requirements and has over 250 temps in various contracts throughout the council undertaking tasks as varied as data-inputting, secretarial work within a department to managing entire teams in the accounts department of the local authority.

The Kodak scanner includes Kodak Perfect Page scanning that allows users to scan a wide range of documents without needing to pre-sort, change scanner settings and obviates the need for any post-image processing.  It is coupled with Paradigms Mangofile application which is a simple to install and easy-to-use software application that acts as an electronic filing cabinet. It converts any paper document into a secure electronic file and enables users to swiftly retrieve them at any time.

Steve Woods, Templinks senior placement officer explains, Our first office only had about 1,000 sq ft of storage space and we filled that in the first six months.  Managing employee records means managing a lot of paper all of which has to be indexed, stored and made readily available.  Temporary work, by its very nature, means that the volume of paper records added to an employees file increases every time they are assigned to a new placement. With this solution, were saving about 80% of the space we have and our core operations are about 30% more effective.

The initial work involved clearing a backlog of paper using a Kodak scanner to scan and archive the records.  By the end of the backlog-clearing phase, Paradigm handed over 200 CD-ROMs full of information each filled with around 25,000 documents.

Sandwell MBC has upgraded to a network-based five-user system which includes three KODAK i40 scanners linked to an IBM fileserver.  The KODAK i40s enable Templink staff to archive existing records quickly and efficiently and it is able to deal with a wide range of documents such as CVs or application forms.  The total volume of actual records now take up a minimal amount of office space and are easily accessed and maintained by all Templink staff. The extra space has been reallocated to more frontline activity including a help desk for new starters with better overall services to the departments within the Council that use the service.

All Templink staff are fully trained to use Mangofile and all new employee records are now scanned and filed internally.

Staff time is far more effectively used, streamlined access to important information has been improved and the department now has a single filing convention for all documents stored.  The scanning solution is now used to securely store every single document or piece of paper that arrives at Templink.  Scanning CVs has proved to be especially effective providing instant access when and where it is needed, total security is guaranteed and, at the same time, Sandwells people have instant access.

Steve Woods concluded, The Mangofile solution and the Kodak scanners have changed the way we work.  It has made our operation more efficient and even changed the way we look weve managed to change how our office space is utilised, its more effective, affording us the opportunity and the freedom to communicate better. We simply had no idea of just how much space a filing cabinet takes up.  With Paradigms help, weve put in place a strict control on document management process so that were in control of documents, not controlled by them.

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