We’re proud to announce the 18 organizations who will be receiving Run Smarter® Awards at the 2011 Laserfiche Institute Conference.
Please join us as we congratulate this year’s winners:
- The Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe Indians
- The Virginia Port Authority
- Durham County, NC
- The City of Maple Grove, MN
- The Central Health District of Boise, ID
- The London Borough of Tower Hamlets
- The Long Beach Police Department
- NE Metro Intermediate Schools
- Texas A&M University Kingsville
- The Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board
- Pulte Mortgage
- Spire Investment Partners, LLC
- Wythe County Community Hospital
- Dallas Associated Dermatologists
- South Essex Partnership NHS Trust
- ECOM Atlantic
- ESSAR Group
We’d like to thank everyone who submitted nominations for this year’s award – and we’d like to invite you to join us at the 2011 Laserfiche Institute Conference January 10-12 in Los Angeles to congratulate this year’s winners.
Spread out over 55 miles and comprising 12 separate businesses, including Grand Casino Mille Lacs and Grand Casino Hinckley, the Corporate Commission of the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe Indians needed a way to route and track documents in a more timely and efficient manner. With the use of Laserfiche Workflow most documents are now routed within 3 days or less—which used to take weeks. Through the use of stamps and annotations, anyone that has the ability to view the document can track where the document is and how long someone has had the document, replacing the need for separate spreadsheets to log document progress, or, worse, to search from office to office. Microsoft Reporting Services uses Quick Fields to create a monthly report for administrators using metadata from documents in Laserfiche. Finally, the HR department uses Quick Fields to fill in template fields and file documents overnight after identifying the type of document and employee ID. This has resulted in reduced costs, most of all, accelerated processes.
Systems Engineer Lance Dutcher credits Laserfiche’s ease of use and administration. “The only time that the person designing our 22 workflows saw the product was during the hour session at the Laserfiche user conference,” he says. “We did all of the end user training in house without the need of a consultant. We were able to implement Workflow without any outside services or additional costs.”
At the same time, using Laserfiche has shown the tribe the value of standardizing forms and routing processes. “We now have a backup person for every part of the routing process to be able to keep the process moving efficiently,” he adds.
The Virginia Port Authority needed a robust records management system that could integrate with its existing SharePoint platform. According to Senior Analyst Angela Ellis, “Because we already had SharePoint in place, we wanted to use it as a collaboration platform that could act as the ‘front end’ for a third party records management solution. We wanted to find a solution that would integrate seamlessly with SharePoint, and Laserfiche provided us with that.
“Integrating SharePoint and Laserfiche enables us to tie all of our systems into one central location to access, manage and control information, whether it’s a report from Dynamics, a Word document or an archived copy of a Board Meeting document. Our content is now searchable on an enterprise level, and the results are returned to users transparently, through our already existing SharePoint deployment,” she adds.
Before implementing Laserfiche, the Port Authority had a number of rooms—even warehouses—dedicated to storing paper records. To comply with state-regulated record retention requirements, employees had to manually review boxes of documentation annually for disposal. Using Laserfiche has streamlined and centralized this once cumbersome process for their records managers, who are now able to manage their records from their seats.
Implementing Laserfiche has had many benefits for the Port Authority, including:
- Consistent records management.
- Reduced use of paper.
- Decreased need for document storage. The Port Authority has been able to tear down a warehouse that had been used for records storage and convert it for profitable use.
- Instant search and retrieval.
- Centralized information access for users across the organization.
- Improved collaboration across the organization.
- Automated RFP and bid selection processes.
The County Attorney’s Office/Legal Department for Durham County was tired of making multiple copies of documents like medical records and transcripts, which could number thousands of pages. By implementing Laserfiche, the department has drastically decreased its need for paper and printer toner cartridges, and staff time is used more wisely, too.
In fact, the department has experienced a 45% drop in expenditures compared to its previous fiscal year. It also saves approximately 10-15 hours of staff per week, which has allowed it to negate the need for a new position during a constrained budget year. According to Nina Bullock, administrative assistant to the country attorney, “This project is setting a precedent for how smaller departments can create substantial savings while transitioning to a more environmentally friendly way of conducting day-to-day business.”
The Public Health Department has also benefitted from using Laserfiche to manage medical records. It recognized a need to go digital in the face of an impending move to a building that does not have room to store paper records. According to Marcia Robinson, project manager, “The successful completion of converting medical records to electronic records has greatly increased efficiency and enhanced customer service while reducing costs. It’s cut down on delays and errors and eliminated misfiled, misplaced and misnumbered charts.”
Government (Municipal) – City of Maple Grove, MN
On its way to adopting Laserfiche as its ECM standard, Maple Grove has replaced a legacy imaging system (Stellent) in its Finance Department, a legacy document management system in its Administration Department and made its Parks Department paperless in the course of a pilot project. Now Laserfiche is well on its way to replacing another legacy imaging system and document management system as it is rolled out to other departments and has consolidated its support to a single Laserfiche reseller, Cities Digital.
At the same time, users now input their own documents to Laserfiche, and IT staff can now administer the system for the most on their own. Integrations with JD Edwards financial software and the city’s GIS system make information easier to access, while Transparent Records Management has allowed the city to incorporate existing retentions schedules from its legacy document management system while affording users the ability to find and retrieve documents as well. In the future, the City is looking forward to using Workflow to improve efficiencies in other areas such as the routing, coding and approval of purchasing card and accounts payable invoices.
Boise, ID’s Central Health District maintains copies of current and past applications and permits of on-site sewage permits for a four-county area of responsibility. Each county’s planning and zoning authority requires the Health Department to review each subdivision application. Prior to Laserfiche, microfilming applications and permits was so resource intensive, only one county’s worth of information could be archived a year. Records were filed by a file number, but because each application wasn’t always completed in that time frame, documents became harder and harder to find.
After successfully migrating most microfilmed copies into Laserfiche, records are now accessible to all offices at any given time. If the file is unavailable to field personnel, supervisors can answer technical questions by reviewing documents stored on Laserfiche at their convenience. These records are also available to the general public, realtors, and installers via WebLink. Before Laserfiche, one to four staff members were required to spend one-fourth to one-half of their time to research document requests from internal and external customers. Now, most requests can be researched by the person requesting the information. Request from external customers can be handled by e-mail or the web from their desktop. Staff time has been reduced dramatically through availability. Staff can concentrate on customer service—not paperwork.
Building on this success, the Immunizations department is scanning all client records to eliminate storage and streamline access to old records. Accounting is scanning all contracts and other documents for several reasons that include storage elimination and easy access for its program managers.
Government (International) – London Borough of Tower Hamlets
The Development & Regeneration Directorate for the London Borough of Tower Hamlets consists of three departments: land charges, town planning and building control.
- Prior to implementing Laserfiche, the land charges department had no ECM system in place. Employees manually managed 15,000 paper files, and they still used a typewriter to register land charges on index cards!
- The town planning department had been using a document management system called IDOX since 2000, but it had no BPM component.
- The building control department had no system in place and needed to scan more than 50,000 files consisting of three million pages and 100,000 drawings.
The Digitization project for the Directorate uses Laserfiche Rio as its ECM system of choice due to its ease of use and flexibility. This four-year project will be completed by the end of 2010 and will cost about £1.4 million on completion. Today, the three departments store millions of pages in Laserfiche, which has been integrated with their GIS application. Over the next few months, Building Control will begin using Workflow to process applications, and the public will gain access to documents through Laserfiche WebLink.
So far, Laserfiche has saved the Directorate nearly 100 square meters of storage space. Moving forward, Project Manager Louis DuPreez notes that the organization’s IT department is currently rationalizing its existing IT systems, and he believes that Laserfiche may well emerge as the ECM standard for the entire organization since none of the other systems in use within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets are as comprehensive as Laserfiche.
When a legacy imaging system required expensive hardware and software upgrades, the value-conscious Long Beach Police Department saw the opportunity to replace it with Laserfiche late last year.
“Laserfiche now does the work of two separate imaging systems—a TIFF-based archival imaging system and a general information and administrative file storage system,” says Jonathon Stafford, Records and Technology Administrator. “Laserfiche is customizable enough to allow decommissioning of that application, its server and its expensive maintenance contract.”
Besides the cost-savings, he says, staff can now input the myriad document types the LBPD works with (field Interview cards, permits, search warrants, etc.), while adding document types and customizing the UI to meet diverse user’s needs. The addition of OCR capability and Web Access system availability, Stafford points out, “allows us to locate and match suspect descriptions and information from any City computer, helping us solve crimes and save lives.”
For instance, the LBPD is now using Laserfiche to provide officers with access to its Gang Injunction paperwork from their patrol cars. “This is very important because we’ve included embedded links to accompanying documents also stored in Laserfiche,” Stafford adds. “This is an entirely new capability that allows patrol officers to access this critical data in the field.”
As Administrative Services Director of Northeast Metro 916 school district, Kristine Carr kept hearing how much the other nine other member districts in the St. Paul area needed the benefits of a document management system, but only if it could work into an already-tight budget and not burden any one district with hosting another server. Northeast Metro 916 and three of member districts worked together to purchase a Laserfiche system under a cooperative and shared model, which Northeast Metro 916 houses and supports. “Each district has their own distinct and secure data area on the same server and each district pays for their licensing fees,” Carr explains. This model has helped share in the initial cost to purchase Laserfiche and also in the ongoing administrative costs and training. Carr says she sees success not only in her own district’s use of the system, but in the fact that every other district has renewed their agreement to continue sharing the funding since implementing Laserfiche in 2008.
Additionally, NE Metro 916 has developed a job training program for its special education students, which, as Carr puts it, has “mushroomed into much more. We now actually have some of our students doing each phase of document imaging— transport and chain of custody of documents; preparation; scanning; and quality assurance of the document scan and folder placement.”
After a need for an ECM system brought Laserfiche to Texas A&M University – Kingsville (TAMUK) in 2007 with the promise of overhauling departmental business processes, it was an integration with FabSoft to process documents (purchase orders and bids to start) directly from the university’s remote mainframe that added an important layer of functionality that kick-started enterprise adoption.
TAMUK has since streamlined entire work processes as opposed to just changing a task from manual to electronic. Employees are seeing an immediate return on time savings and cost savings. Overnight delivery carriers, mail service, and long‐distance fax charges have decreased, repetitive/duplicative copies have been reduced, document security is enhanced, information/document sharing has increased, and most importantly, customer service response time has decreased.
What’s more, TAMUK employees that were engaged in this change are beginning to see many other opportunities for business process change. Numerous administrative offices have been greatly affected directly by using Quick Fields and Workflow. Daily, TAMUK produces volumes of Purchase Orders, Bids, and Vouchers, and all of these documents are now being named, filed and routed by Laserfiche. Word‐of‐mouth has led to interest in using Laserfiche to process additional high volume documents (i.e., Travel Vouchers, Payment Card backup, Requisition, etc.), which will affect additional operating and academic departments across the TAMUK campus. The system has started a culture shift so the office works as one unit rather than as individual knowledge silos. As Ralph Stephens, project manager, predicts, “Once these additional offices become engaged with the Laserfiche system, TAMUK will see exponential growth in process change. We started out addressing issues related to filing/storing/destroying paper documents, and we’ve ended up with a cutting‐edge solution to enhance our business processes.”
For this large school board, managing paper records was an arduous, time consuming and expensive task that forced the organization to rent outside storage facilities. Complying with a myriad of new government regulations made managing paper records even more difficult. Manual workflow processes were inefficient and time consuming.
Laserfiche provided the school board with the means to provide its staff with accessible and secure electronic access to official Board documents. It also allowed the school board to remove a substantial amount of paper, to use office space more productively and to increase staff productivity through process automation.
IT Director Michael Hiltz states, “Although there may be some departments or applications within an organization that have a more urgent or immediate need than others, Laserfiche’s ECM benefits are organization-wide and all departments can benefit. As a result, organizations should focus on rollouts at an enterprise rather than departmental level.”
Financial Services (Mortgage) – Pulte Mortgage
Pulte Mortgage offers mortgages to the buyers purchasing homes from PulteGroup, the largest homebuilder in the US. ECM had been seen as a critical part of the company’s eLending platform, to manage the company’s information cost-effectively by reducing paper costs and enabling staff to find and track documents for efficiency, auditing and risk management purposes. But when it came time to implement an ECM project in 2009, Pulte Mortgage needed a truly agile system that would act as integrative middleware for the many capabilities it had developed in-house, like BPM workflows for core loan operation functions, while supporting Web applications for online loan applications and an internal loan conditioning system, as well as an enterprise messaging architecture that had been established for asynchronous inter-application communication. As Christy Richardson, VP of Applications and Development, puts it, “It needed to be easy to use, easy to integrate and sit at the center of our enterprise from a collaboration and storage perspective.”
The firm purchased Laserfiche in May 2009, and as of August 2010 has completed roll-out of its user system. Richardson says significant improvements have been realized in the form of instant access to information including no more lost documents, improved customer service and response time, as well as time savings related to several processes within loan life cycle management. “Things that used to take an hour now take 20 minutes,” she says. “We’ve also experienced improvements in compliance due to audit tracking and increased visibility into the contents within a loan.”
Richardson also notes a new level of oversight is in place. “The one unexpected benefit we realized after our initial implementation was the additional insight Laserfiche provided our managers with their employees and their work. They now have an easy-to-use tool to verify contents placed into a file and when they were added, modified and by whom. They are also able to keep an eye on the timeliness of documents being added into loan files to help ensure team members are keeping on top of their work.”
“Strategic ECM projects can be complicated, but ensuring you have the right project team, both internally and externally, and the right project structure is important,” Richardson offers. “Laserfiche met our functional and technical requirements and now serves as our electronic loan file, which is core to our business operations.”
Spire Investment Partners is a combination of a Broker/Dealer, a Registered Investment Advisor and an Insurance Agency. When Spire established its B/D business in 2008, it knew that it needed an ECM system to optimize its workflow and facilitate compliance. According to CAO Phillip Fournier, “In a very short time period, Laserfiche allowed us to create a workflow that connected all of our offices around the country to our Operations Center. Now it doesn’t matter if an office is five miles away or 500 miles away; business is transacted quickly and efficiently.”
Fournier details the other benefits of the system:
- Reduced the cost (and delay) of overnight shipping.
- Workflows that automatically push “not in good order” (NIGO) paperwork back to the reps with notes about what is missing for quick correction.
- No lost forms.
- Faster audits.
- Online access to client information.
Spire estimates that the average office saves approximately $3,500 in overnight charges annually from using Laserfiche. Additional savings result from the reduced cost of physical storage, file cabinets, files, lost paperwork, hours of file maintenance and delays in processing, the numbers become even more significant. Fournier also says that Laserfiche “allows our compliance department to be much less onerous in its supervision” thanks to the system’s robust security features.
Spire recently upgraded to Laserfiche Avante for its improved workflow capabilities. “If we tried to remove Laserfiche, our reps would revolt,” he explains. “I tell all of our new reps to start using Laserfiche yesterday. Every day they delay is another day of inefficiency.”
Since deploying Laserfiche in August 2009, Patty Hall, Director of Health Information Management and Facility Privacy Officer, says Wythe County Community Hospital (WCCH) has seen Laserfiche handle the “voluminous amount of paperwork,” as she puts it, generated in large part by its Meditech patient information system, while benefitting various departments’ processing needs enterprise-wide. An integration with Meditech imports documents and reports straight to Laserfiche, while utilizing Quick Fields’ Forms Combo to identify key index fields on the fly. Laserfiche has given immediate access to information for staff who have been granted access rights—with a HIPAA compliant audit trail for administrators – while creating a centralized repository for all business units: Health Information, Business Office, ER & Registration, and Human Resources.
Thanks now to the ability to scan charts daily, WCCH has a minimal backlog of loose charting, while physicians now have 24/7 access to patient EKG history by going into Laserfiche and clicking on the patient’s “cardiology” tab. This simple ease of use, Hall says, has gone a long way to ensuring the success of Laserfiche. “End users can access documents by going to the specific template fields that are set up just like the tabs in a patient’s paper chart.”
What’s more, Laserfiche does not require a dedicated IS team, as do other applications within its parent hospital system. Now, inspired by a 2009 CIMS conference at reseller EMI’s headquarters, Hall says she’ll be looking at using Quick Fields to scan loose filing and automatically separate and deliver information to patient accounts, a time-consuming manual process. “WCCH is continually investigating new ways of managing information, and has not yet been able to come up with an idea that Laserfiche can not accomplish,” Hall says.
Dallas Associated Dermatologists was looking for a way to transition to electronic medical charts without changing the way its doctors organized records or interacted with patients. In 2007, the practice added a document management module to its billing software, but the result was less than ideal. “The first time around, I confined my search to software that had been designed specifically for the healthcare community,” Controller Bill Duke explains. “The second time around, I looked further afield.”
Specifically, he looked at Laserfiche, and discovered that it was flexible enough to adapt to the needs of his practice. Duke says, “With Laserfiche, we can create our own templates, our own fields and our own classifications for documents. That flexibility gives us control over our output, and it lets our physicians continue to chart in the way that works best for them.”
Dallas Associated Dermatologists benefits from instant search and retrieval of patient charts, as well as the automation afforded by Workflow. “We’ve automated much of our sign-out process for physician notes,” Duke explains. “Once transcriptions have been imported into Laserfiche, they’re automatically routed to the Transcriptionist folder where they are linked to their .wav files. We’re also testing how to automate other paper-intensive processes, such as prescription refill approval, using Workflow.”
The practice has already been able to use space that used to be allocated for document storage for revenue-generating activities, and Duke anticipates that once Laserfiche has been implemented in areas such as A/P, Inventory and HR, the time savings for staff will be huge. “EMR systems are focused exclusively on patient records, but Laserfiche is going to allow us to streamline operations across the practice,” Duke concludes.
Working with Laserfiche reseller ScanDoc, South Essex Partnership NHS Trust (SEPT) initially implemented a 20-user Laserfiche installation as a pilot project to see how well it could keep up with the round-the-clock scanning and patient-monitoring needs of its Forensics Services department. Laserfiche outperformed a legacy imaging system so well that it is being deployed, in conjunction with Adobe Lifecycle products, to establish an EMR system for the whole hospital that will manage in excess of 60 million images. Dominic Malvern, Head of System Development, says that Laserfiche’s initial effectiveness, coupled with the fact that it can enable shared but secured access to patient records on the network or remotely and be deployed both through a client server and Web browser options via Web Access, has inspired true enterprise adoption. “Initially Laserfiche was envisaged solely as a clinical and medical records solution but we have now realized that it can be a complete multi-functional document management system for the whole organization and for all types of function and service.”
Along with current deployments to non-clinical areas like vehicle service management, Human Resources and Finance, Malvern says that Laserfiche is well on its way to being the ECM standard for SEPT as it replaces several legacy systems. “The enterprise license deal that we have will enable significant cost savings along with greater functionality,” he says. “Laserfiche can do so much more and even a year down the road we are still discovering new things that it can do for us. Laserfiche has great functionality combined with enormous flexibility and is capable of revolutionizing your whole records and document management, both live and archive.”
ECOM is a global trading company headquartered in Dallas, TX, that, among other things, imports 80% of the coffee used by Starbucks in the US. So when two of its 10 departments went to IT Director Willa Zandi with what she recognized as a need for electronic document management in August of 2009, she saw the opportunity to introduce full-scale ECM/BPM functionality into the company, one familiar process at a time. “Laserfiche was flexible enough that a department can implement it in a way that mirrors their current system, but had the potential where once they’re comfortable, they’d say ‘I don’t even need a folder, now I can start thinking about changing my business.’”
To that end, ECOM is now planning to integrate Laserfiche with its Navision accounting software to set up distributed approval A/P processing for its 10-plus departments, updating invoices which Workflow then files according to payment type and date. In its Real Estate department a planned integration with its Timberline accounting system will do the same. More recently, Ecom’s Traffic department is implementing 35 workflows that can have up to 250 different outcomes (!), while its HR is planning an integration with its ADP system to automatically create employee folders.
“What’s so important to us is the scalability of Laserfiche. Once we have integrations with our ERP up and running in our office, we can roll it out to our offices around the world,” Zandi says. “We’re developing what has the potential to be the centralized ECM/BPM global standard for the company’s business processes, and even before we’ve done all our analysis or know where that infrastructure will go and how our repositories will break out, we know Laserfiche has the scalability to do it.”
The Essar Group is a multinational conglomerate and a leading player in the sectors of Steel, Oil & Gas, Power, Communications, Shipping Ports & Logistics, Projects and Minerals. With operations in more than 20 countries across five continents, the Group employs 60,000 people, with revenues of USD 15B. But with such diversified interests – the group includes 63 companies – Vice President Mandeep Singh saw that Laserfiche agile ECM could offer Essar’s myriad financial processes a central shared service center to address, in his words “visibility , time-bound process execution and accountability.”
Since implementing a 100-user Laserfiche Rio system with an unlimited public portal, Singh says, Essar Group’s finance departments have seen significant benefits, including better work allocation, faster document processing, and most of all transparency of daily and pending transactions in a categorized matter. Laserfiche has been integrated with SAP to implement automated process flows, control framework, and de-dupe checks which has resulted in process efficiencies, increased productivity and enhanced controllership.