The Digital File Cabinet in Action with ScanSnap

Monday, July 20, 2009
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When I saw the ScanSnap for the first time last year, little did I know it was a device I’d soon integrate with my company’s proprietary operating software.

I was at the hospital with my wife when the receptionist took the paperwork I gave her, fed the documents into a small device on her desk and pushed the button.  After watching the paperwork scan through and returned to me in a matter of seconds, I stared at it and thought, “Wow that was fast.”  I immediately wrote down the brand and model number.

I couldn’t help but think how well this device aligned with a digital file cabinet idea I’d been considering to implement into my organization.  I’m the director of information technology for Labor Finders International, Inc., the parent company of Labor Finders.  Labor Finders provides temporary staffing and labor services for commercial, industrial and construction applications, through our U.S. franchise network.  With 250 offices nationwide who each deal with paperwork from over 1000 new employees and other applicants every year, we’ve always suffered from “paper file cabinet syndrome.”  Applicant and client data was physically stored at corresponding offices and branches could never access information from other offices when they needed it.  We provide a proprietary software solution called StaffCom to each of our branch offices and I knew that the digital file cabinet concept would alleviate our paper problem and help make data more accessible across the organization.  We just needed a device to support it.

With ScanSnap on the brain following my experience at the hospital, I talked about it a week later at a barbeque with friends.  During that conversation, I discovered that one journalist friend is an expert on ScanSnap and had a couple units on hand for me to test out.  I told him about my digital file cabinet idea and he not only let me borrow his S510 unit, but he connected me with Doug Cripps, Business Development Manager at Fujitsu Computer Products of America.  Shortly thereafter, Doug sent me a ScanSnap S510 evaluation unit with which we could develop and test the idea.

With the support from Fujitsu, we were able to develop the Digital File Cabinet in StaffCom, which now provides each of our offices with the ability to scan any paper document directly into the software.  From there, digitized versions of the documents are saved automatically into the “Employee File,” “Customer File” or “Document Repository.”  Saving a digitized version of the documents in the system provides users with the ease of accessing any document at anytime from any office as long as they have the proper access rights.

EmployeeDocumentsTab

Users can scan single or double side documents or even ID cards, which our franchisees see as valuable because they constantly have to file social security cards, driver licenses and other identification cards.

StaffComScanner

We deployed the new version of StaffCom in October and six months later, roughly 50 offices had installed scanners and over 120,000 documents had already been uploaded into the system.  The adoption of the Digital File Cabinet solution and the ScanSnap has been so successful that the volume and speed of documents uploaded into the system has already required us to upgrade our document repository server to increase our storage capacity.  Some franchisees are now installing more than one scanner per office while others are deploying the new S1500 model.  But even with a new model in some branch offices, there’s no need to modify our system.  Both scanners work seamlessly with the solution.

The ScanSnap helped the Digital File Cabinet solution come to fruition and, most importantly, has helped finally cure our “paper file cabinet syndrome.”

For more on how Labor Finders uses the ScanSnap with our Digital File Cabinet solution, feel free to submit a question in Ask the Expert.

Jorge Quintana
Director of Information Technology
Labor Finders International, Inc.

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