Posts Tagged ‘service’

Types of Document Management Software: On-Demand

March 19, 2014
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An On-Demand document management solution is accessible through the Internet and requires no installation.

Like you, we’re used to installing software on our computers and servers and then launching the application from our desktops. While that is a familiar way of installing and using applications, advances in software engineering have gone beyond that, particularly for multi-user applications like document management solutions. For modern solutions it is common to emulate the way in which the worldwide web works with its common applications such as shopping for books or making travel arrangements. Nothing is “launched” during these activities; instead all the work is done from within the web browser. This makes teaching people how to use a “program” considerably simpler since virtually all users are familiar with operating a browser. Document management software is no exception when it comes to this innovation. So while a number of document management software products still require the “install” on each individual desktop and another on the server, more modern solutions don’t. Modern solutions are designed to be easily distributed from desktop to desktop, requiring little to no maintenance there, and making the deployment to multiple users simple and easy. The popularity of this type of software has created two new categories to refer to this kind of solution: On-Premise and On-Demand. 

On-Demand

The second model, On-Demand, requires no installation at all. Like the name says, it is available to the user on demand. A company will still use its own document management application, but instead of having the software installed on a machine on premise, it is available on demand over the internet. This kind of software also goes by another name a SaaS solution. 

SaaS is an acronym for ‘Software as a Service’. It is used to describe applications that are provided and hosted by a vendor and leased to users and organizations on a pro-rated, as-used basis. The provider of the application (the vendor) owns the application, hosts it at the vendor facility, and manages all of the physical and technical aspects of the software. Users of the application remotely access it (most commonly through a browser) and use the application just as if it existed on the organization’s network.

SaaS applications vary from lightweight versions of existing on- premise software to full-fledged complete applications with all of the bells and whistles. The primary benefit for the enterprise is the ability to have the complete full- functionality of a software application without having to support the infrastructure associated with managing the application in-house. Users pay a subscription fee based either on the number of users accessing the software, or by the amount of usage or data space used by the organization.

The application is maintained by the vendor. This means all infrastructure (including security) and software maintenance is handled by the company offering the SaaS solution. End-users of the application have limited control over features and layout within the application solution so SaaS vendors must be very careful when updating their solutions to make sure that the experience of the users is not changed significantly with any given change to the application.

The SaaS model is a very compelling model for complex business applications such as automation of the AP process. It allows a business to utilize sophisticated software normally limited to businesses with deep pockets. In business terms, SaaS is a leasing option for premium applications.

A caveat is that not all SaaS solutions are the same. While the interface and applications capabilities are what you see is what you get, there are many hidden aspects of SaaS that need to be weighed when making the purchase decision. Some of these aspects are security, connectivity, and data protection.

Leading SaaS vendors understand that security of business data is a top priority. Security for a SaaS application is three-fold. There is individual company user security, which addresses the rights and privileges of users within a company that use the SaaS application. Next, there is security to ensure that one company cannot see any data from another company using the same SaaS application. Finally, there is the overall security of all of the data handled by the SaaS vendor. Most SaaS vendors operate a series of checks and balances against their security to ensure users have only access to their respective data and that individual rights to that data and that data only are enforced.

Connectivity is another critical issue for SaaS vendors. In short, if a business cannot reach its data, it cannot do business. SaaS vendors must ensure that this does not happen. This often leads to a very sophisticated infrastructure containing multiple levels of redundancy, backup generators and internet connectivity. Achieving high availability scores at 99.9% and above is critical.

Tying in with security and connectivity is data protection. Again, if a business cannot find its data, it cannot do business. Being able to reach the SaaS vendor is very important, but ensuring that the data will be there all of the time is just as critical. Reputable SaaS vendors have an established solid backup and recovery plan to mitigate any potential loss of data.

Software as a Service is a viable solution especially in the area of document management. In many cases it provides a very high-end solution at a fraction of the cost to managing a similar solution in house. It also provides an easy and flexible distributed solution available to a customer wherever she or he has internet connectivity. Due to the nature of a SaaS solution, all of the maintenance, upgrades and data protection is the responsibility of the vendor. For that reason, it is important to look beyond the capabilities of the software and also consider what actions the vendor has implemented to ensure the safety and availability of data.

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Furniture Row

December 18, 2013
A room piled full of employee paperwork spelled for inefficient processes at Furniture Row.

An off-site location piled full of employee paperwork spelled for inefficient processes at Furniture Row.

Founded in 1974, Furniture Row is a large, privately held group of companies specializing in home furnishings and headquartered in Denver, Colorado. With stores in more than 30 states and thousands of employees, the company markets sofas, chairs, dining sets, lamps, mattresses, bookcases and much more under the name brands of Sofa Mart, Oak Express, Bedroom Expressions and Denver Mattress.

The Problem

Furniture Row stored its thousands of employee records in stacked boxes housed an off site location. The stacked boxes made it difficult to retrieve an employee’s file, especially if it was located near the bottom of the stacks. When a file was requested, an employee would go to the warehouse, search for it, retrieve it, manually copy it and mail it to the requesting store. Since these sensitive, private files were frequently requested and shared across multiple locations, they needed to be quickly and easily accessible. Unfortunately (and understandably), it typically took up to an hour to retrieve a record and days to share the document with the department that requested it. What’s more, the system was consuming an ever-greater amount of valuable floor space in the warehouse that was needed for storing merchandise. The stacked box system also left these sensitive records vulnerable to security risks and the company was rightly concerned about the potential for disaster recovery if needed.

The Solution

Since the company had no internal technical staff, the FileBound® On-DemandTM (ASP/SaaS) service was the ideal solution for Furniture Row. Up and running in just a few days, FileBound’s On-Demand service combined with scan-on-demand abilities allows images to be immediately available as they are requested across the company. No more searching in boxes. No more waiting for files to slowly make their way across country via USPS. The company especially liked the fact that there was no up front capital investment required to provide the service.

FileBound Results

Furniture Row immediately cut the time required for document retrieval from around an hour to a matter of moments, and the time required to share the information across the country decreased from days to just minutes. The company also now has full confidence that records are safe and secure in the FileBound system, no matter what happens. That’s a huge advancement over the old stacked boxes method of storing records.

Document Management Industry Roundup: August 23, 2013

August 23, 2013
Give yourself a hand for a hard week at work. But first, take a look at this week's latest news.

Give yourself a hand for a hard week at work. But first, take a look at this week’s latest news.

This week’s important resources:

1. Is the paperless office a reality yet? Take a look at this online debate ZD Net had on the topic. Which side do you favor? http://zd.net/12jF74Q

2. Do you agree that product and service organizations differ in how knowledge management is addressed and carried out? http://bit.ly/1cVP5jO

3. It’s important to prepare students for the future, something paperless will be part of. Do you think programs like this allow students to be prepared for the technology they’ll have to use in the workforce? http://bit.ly/13S5XP6

4. How has BYOD affected mobile trends? The ITProPortal podcast answers this, along with other outcomes of adopting BYOD. http://bit.ly/1f262Vm

In case you missed our latest blog:

How do invoice errors cost your organization? Find out the impact they have on the bottom line and how FileBound can reduce them in our latest blog. http://bit.ly/1aszYwm

Industrial Service Firm

April 24, 2013

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From its 30 locations and 11 maintenance facilities located across the United States, this client provides tank cleaning, hose testing, hydroblasting, IBC services, hose and fitting consignment, ISO container cleaning, interior and exterior van cleaning, exterior tractor and trailer cleaning, and maintenance to its huge industrial customer base. For more than 40 years, the company has been a leader in its field, supplying the tank truck industry with expert knowledge, dependable security, and a consistently high level of service. As the chemical transport industry has changed and grown, it has adapted its processes to meet the needs of its customers and stay at the top of its service category.

The Problem

The client is an industrial service company that is growing with its customers. With 30 locations and 11 maintenance facilities, a lot of paperwork is generated each day and there is a lot of room for error, lost documents and slow invoicing. The company has experienced them all. Each time a wash ticket was generated, it slowly made its way back through accounting and ultimately became an invoice sent to the customer. However, by the time it reached the client, the service performed was a distant memory, and it was often difficult to establish a clear paper trail to document the service. It was clear, the company’s behind-the-scenes document management needed to be upgraded to keep up with the state-of-the-art expert services it was providing on the front end of the business.

The Solution

FileBound Document Management provided the solutions needed to streamline operations and bring the back office systems up to speed with the high quality service delivered on the front end. FileBound allows the company to quickly and efficiently integrate all the wash tickets generated across the entire organization and shave days, even weeks off their invoice processing. Employees now scan each wash ticket into FileBound. Once entered, the ticket is processed through the system where additional client information is electronically pulled from the GP database. An invoice is speedily created and delivered by mail, fax, or email, depending on the client’s preference.

FileBound Results

The introduction of the FileBound Document Management Solutions has streamlined the entire company’s invoice processing system and greatly reduced costly loss of wash tickets. Customers appreciate the efficient service and employees like being able to provide background information on a sale instantly when a client inquires. If a discrepancy ever arises, they can quickly make corrections to everyone’s satisfaction. FileBound has brought the back room up to the level of the services and efficiency the organization’s clients have long received from the company.