Distributor's Efficiency Skyrockets with New Document Management System

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A new document management process designed by Advance for a major carpet distributor dramatically reduced the firm’s costs, streamlined its workflow and boosted employee productivity.

The document management system “builds a foundation for automating other aspects of our business, which will further enhance our productivity.”

Advance, the leading document solutions provider in Maryland, has designed a custom document management system that’s saving J.J. Haines, one of the country’s largest floor covering distributors, more than $40,000 a year in staff time and $10,000 a year in paper costs.

By eliminating time-consuming paperwork, the new system gives J.J. Haines electronic access to the status of its deliveries, including images of signed delivery tickets, soon after a driver returns to the office. As a result, the company can respond promptly to customers’ questions and, if necessary, produce proof that a delivery was received.

The company’s previous process involved several days of sorting, filing and scanning documents before deliveries were entered in its database. Even then, records were sometimes impossible to retrieve because OCR software had misread the delivery ticket. Staff spent nearly $12,000 in time a year searching for missing data. If a customer disputed a delivery and the company couldn’t locate a signed ticket, it would have to take a loss.

To prevent that situation and boost J.J. Haines’s efficiency, Advance designed an automated document management process. Delivery tickets now include a barcode with the delivery number to ensure accuracy. When they’re printed, a control image is captured and stored electronically. After deliveries, drivers simply place a stack of signed tickets in a multi-sheet scanner. This activates document management software to match each ticket to the control image and change the delivery status in the database.

Previously, J.J. Haines printed its delivery tickets on costly NCR paper. By eliminating the need for a duplicate ticket, Advance was able to replace dot matrix machines with laser printers that take inexpensive paper stock.

Chad Parson, J.J. Haines Information Technology Manager, believes the solution is effective because Advance "didn’t try to make the technology fit the system. Instead, we have a whole new process.”

On top of making document archiving and retrieval more efficient, he says the document management system “builds a foundation for automating other aspects of our business, which will further enhance our productivity.”

About Advance
Privately owned and operated, Advance offers custom document solutions for electronic document management, managed print services, networked digital copiers, printers, scanners, wide format equipment, fax solutions and paper shredders.

With annual revenue approaching $40 million, Advance continually earns sales awards and national recognition for outstanding service from all of the manufacturers it represents: Savin/Ricoh, Canon, Panasonic, Konica Minolta, Kyocera, Muratec, Docuware, and KIP. Advance is a manufacturer’s certified service training center, one of the few in the U.S. More information is online at http://www.advancestuff.com

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Robin Yasinow

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