With roots dating back to 1978, The Hanor Family of Companies is the tenth largest pork producer in the U.S. Established by the Kronseder family of Germany, the company is part of a worldwide agricultural organization. Today, Hanor employs 650 individuals at 780 facilities located in 7 states.
These operations and the organization’s ongoing growth have been predominantly based on the continual investment in strategic alliances and constant upgrade of feed, transport, management information, processing, and genetics programs.
“Despite the quality of our operations, this is still a commodity-driven industry,” said Joe Bradford, corporate IT manager, The Hanor Company. “Low costs and efficient production are key to profitability. Plus, there are so many other considerations. Paperwork is constantly flowing back and forth between all our different sites. In addition to invoices and other accounting work, there is so much documentation related to the compliance of animal safety and EPA regulations. Staying on top of it all is essential for running our business successfully and without problems.”
Eliminating manual processes
To enhance efficiencies companywide, Hanor went live with the DocStar Enterprise Content Management (ECM) system with advanced workflow, reporting, and intelligent data capture in March 2017. After more than two years of shopping around, the program was selected primarily for its ability to improve productivity through enhanced interdepartmental collaboration, as well as eliminate time-consuming manual processes.
DocStar achieves this by storing documents from virtually any input device in a centralized location that’s accessible from nearly anywhere. It also integrates with existing software applications to automatically capture, save, and index records for easy retrieval or tracking across multiple versions.
“Prior to DocStar, we did everything manually,” explained Bradford. “Invoices from our regional facilities were either faxed or emailed to our main headquarters for processing and approval. It was incredibly cumbersome and time consuming to track several thousand invoices through the approval and payment process. In addition, documents sometimes disappeared somewhere along the way, making it incredibly hard to backtrack and find stragglers. Sometimes, we weren’t even aware that something was lost until we heard from the vendor.”
DocStar eliminated these challenges by enabling Hanor to quickly and easily receive either paper or electronic records to then be routed to locations across the country or approved digitally. The solution also provided the ability to instantaneously search and track the status of invoices via numerous criteria— such as vendor name and check number.
“This removed a lot of confusion,” Bradford offered. “We implemented a workflow option that helped us better sort invoices above a certain dollar amount and even directed invoices to the proper individual via coding. For instance, invoices related to capital project expenditures are tracked separately once routed to the appropriate team member. This has really streamlined our payment process.”
Greater efficiencies and reduced bottlenecks
According to Bradford, another advantage is that the DocStar solution is 50 percent faster than their previous system. In the past, the electronic receipt of 80-page fax documents would clog the delivery of other paperwork. Now, the use of multiple servers has enabled the company to receive separate documents simultaneously—reducing bottlenecks.
“Our system is so complicated,” added Bradford. “The ability to track the status of invoices through a variety of different accounting packages is huge. It’s lowered man hours and made us more aware of our financial status at any given moment.
“Our DocStar team worked with us to make it happen,” he said. “They were incredibly passionate about learning our operations and creating an intelligent solution that met our unique and complex corporate needs. Plus, the more we learn about DocStar, the more we realize there’s so much more we can do to increase efficiencies and streamline processes.”