Peelle Technologies Document Scanning and Document Management Services Campbell, CA
197 East Hamilton Avenue
Campbell, CA 95008
Phone: 800.233.5006
Peelle Technologies Document Scanning and Document Management Services Campbell, CA

Section Two: Document Management Basics

 

Capture

For a document management system to enhance business operations, it must accommodate all the types of documents—paper, electronic, fax, audio and video, to name a few - that are part of an organization’s processes and procedures. It should also enable batch processing of documents and forms for organizations that rely on high-volume processing as a part of business operations. There are three ways to bring files into a digital document management system:

  • Scanning or imaging (for paper files)
  • Importing (for archiving electronic documents such as Microsoft Office files, spreadsheets, faxes, audio and video)
  • Conversion (for creating unalterable images of electronic documents)

Scanning a document produces a raster (picture) image that can be stored on a computer. The physical document is scanned and converted into a digital image, which is then stored in the document management system. Document importing is the process of bringing electronic files, such as Microsoft Office documents, graphics, audio clips or video files, into a document management system. Files can be dragged into a document management system and remain in their native formats. These files can then be viewed in their original format by either launching the originating application or by using an embedded file viewer from within the document management system.

 

Converting documents is the process of transforming electronic files, such as word processor or spreadsheet documents, into permanent, raster-image format for storage within a document management system. Windows® applications, such as Microsoft Word® or Excel® or Autodesk® AutoCAD™, can print existing files into an unalterable image of the document. These images are usually stored as archival-quality TIFF (Tagged Image File Format) files. For documents, the conversion process also pulls a clean stream of text directly from the document, eliminating the need for OCR. This text file can then be used for full-text indexing of the document to assist with later retrieval. Converting electronic documents bypasses scanning, saves paper and printer ink and produces a cleaner image than scanned paper files. The document management system should be integrated with Microsoft Office or other applications to permit users to convert documents with maximum ease. This method of imaging electronic documents is best suited for permanent archives.

 

Organizations that image a significant number of files a day will quickly realize the importance of batch processing. When large numbers of documents need to be brought into the document management system daily, it is inefficient to process each one individually. A full-featured document management system allows files and records to be brought into the system in one batch to speed processing. Once all the pages have been captured, the system should let users easily group them into appropriate documents before assigning template fields and moving them to their appropriate folder location. The system should make it possible for pages to be rearranged, removed or added to a document to correct any mistakes that may have occurred in the organization of a file.

 

Similarly, it should be simple to update or add template fields at a later time. In high-volume scanning operations, automatically separating and indexing documents using bar codes saves time and money. Bar codes index documents by extracting fields from an external database, by filling in fields with pre-assigned values or by associating certain documents with a particular index template. Bar codes can act as markers to indicate the beginning of a new document, automating document separation. While bar codes require some preparation, their benefits can be enormous. For example, if 2,000 voter registrations, 500 inquiries and 2,500 pages of legislative minutes were to be scanned, with bar code stickers placed on each document, the system would then automatically read the stickers, determine the start of each new document, assign the correct type of index template for each and fill in template information automatically.

 

Organizations that repeatedly process the same forms may want to use Zone OCR to reduce data entry time and demands on system memory. Zone OCR saves time through automated document indexing that reads certain regions (zones) of a document and then places information into the appropriate template fields. The amount of required storage space is also reduced because OCR and indexing are applied only to responses that have been entered.

 

To minimize errors, the system should allow the user to set a minimum percent accuracy level for OCR. If any portion of the form does not meet this standard, the system should notify the user so that a staff member can read the form and manually enter the correct field information.

 

For organizations with multiple offices, it is important to ensure that a document management system permit users at both central and branch offices to capture and access documents as necessary. Full-featured systems allow for documents to be scanned into the system and transferred into the database at different times to minimize traffic demands on the network during peak business hours.

 

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Peelle Technologies is a leading provider of document scanning, document conversion, document imaging, document management, microfilm scanning, microfilm conversion, microfiche conversion services and software products. Our document scanning, microfilm scanning and other document management services are provided in the San Jose, San Francisco, Bay Area, Silicon Valley, Oakland, Napa, Monterey, Sonoma, Visalia, Stockton, Modesto areas of Northern California. Our other products and services are available across the United States.