Case Study

Truck Dealer Group Drives Savings And Efficiency With Fleet Of Alaris S2050 Scanners

Source: Kodak Alaris
Kodak Alaris

Truck Country evolves from MFP-based document capture to a tightly integrated digital document management solution featuring Alaris Scanners in 20+ remote locations

Situation

Using MFPs and manual data entry, Truck Country® experiences lost data, wasted time, and inefficient processes.

Objectives

Achieve digital transformation in a comprehensive, productive way – integrating scanners, capture, data management, and enterprise automation software.

Solution

Twenty-seven Alaris S2050 Scanners, along with individual software programs, all working seamlessly together to create an end-to-end information management and business process automation solution.

Results

Savings of tens of thousands of dollars in first year alone, thanks to reduction in paper storage costs, increases in productivity through task automation, along with streamlined, simplified workflows, among other benefits.

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When asked why Truck Country® decided to embark on its digital transformation journey, Cameron Wolfe, the company’s Internal Auditor and Continuous Improvement Coordinator, said, “So we could come into the twenty first century!” Truck Country, owned by the McCoy Group, is the largest Freightliner dealer group in the U.S., serving customers at 23 locations in Iowa, Indiana, Ohio, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. And while they weren’t totally non-digital, their reliance on MFP devices for image capture left a lot to be desired. “We still used a number of manual processes too,” Wolfe recalled. “And often you’d see a group of employees waiting to use the MFP or clearing another paper jam. The images the MFPs created were big, and our IT team would get cranky about some locations creating massive PDFs and storing them on the network.”  The troublesome MFPs were also resulting in lost data, poor-quality capture, damage to documents, and reduced employee productivity.

Also cutting into efficiency were inconsistent paper processes. “Filing systems varied by location,” Wolfe said. “Some filed by date, others by order number or customer name. Finding documents wasn’t always a quick process.”

Dynamic Excellence in Information (DEI) puts it all together

Enter Terry Abrams, CEO of Alaris Authorized Reseller Dynamic Excellence in Information (DEI) of Houston, TX, who made a presentation to Truck Country that outlined a robust end-to-end solution for digital transformation. What resonated with Truck Country management was the comprehensiveness and multiple advantages of the proposal, including business process automation and a highly integrated workflow solution encompassing scanners, software and services.

“Upfront, we knew the Alaris S2050 Scanners would be ideal, thanks to their durability, documented lack of downtime, and ability to handle mixed paper weights and sizes without issue,” Abrams noted. “Then a suite of software to optimize the crisp images that Alaris’ Perfect Page image enhancement provides, ideally adapted for OCR, backed by a superior service organization.” Psigen capture software was selected to take the business data from paper, with DocuPhase software for automation and to connect common applications and streamline business workflow processes. DocuPhase software moves information to line of business applications such as Procede, which helps Truck Country manage their parts inventory by updating transactions in real time, creating more valuable, highly useful business insights.

Upfront scanning power from Alaris sets the stage
What DEI promised in terms of hardware/software synergy quickly proved to be practical and powerful. “It all starts with the scanning,” Wolfe stated. “And here the S2050 Scanners shine. People feed them greasy, crumpled documents and these are scanned with image quality that is uniformly excellent.” Wolfe noted many areas of the organization have seen demonstrated benefits, including –

  • Parts Inventory Management – now seeing real time sales/inventory data which allows them to operate leaner while delivering more value to customers 
  • HR Onboarding – is streamlined with confidential data safer than ever before
  • Accounts Payable and Receivable – can receive revenue more quickly and manage debt at a strategic level more effectively

Currently Truck Country is using twenty-seven Alaris S2050 Scanners with plans to double this volume within the next six months. In the first year alone, the organization scanned in 1.5 million pages, often in document sets of three to five pages.

The adoption process for this technological sea change went smoothly. It was new and different, but when employees saw how easy it was to scan and send documents and information to the right places and people, they embraced the solution quickly. “People here now think this is the greatest thing in the world,” Wolfe said. “Every piece of information is now at their fingertips. I don’t think we can even put a value on how beneficial this transformation has been.”

A truckload of positive outcomes

In terms of concrete benefits, Wolfe mentions –

  • Operational savings of almost $30,000 in the first year – including slashing postage and delivery costs by $10,000 and paper storage expenses by $18,000 – with anticipated full return on investment within just a few years
  • Reduction in paper storage costs – no need to pay for off-site storage or clutter up locations with many file cabinets and storage boxes
  • Significantly smaller file sizes – saving space on the network and making the IT team happy 
  • Productivity advantages – such as increased daily duty capacity – thanks to being able to engage Alaris Perfect Page technology over the ISIS driver – plus the speeds of the S2050 Scanners 
  • Smoother workflows – from capture to storage to distribution, information now moves more quickly, securely and gracefully throughout the organization
  • Fully automated scanning operations – using barcode scanning at 200 dpi and the same recognition process throughout all Truck Country locations and departments, so everyone can simply hit “scan” and send to archive documents without any manual indexing
  • Ability to begin scanning legacy documents – initiatives using summer help have allowed areas like Accounts Payable to digitize almost half of their records dating back to the ‘90s
  • Compliance with HIPPA guidelines on sensitive medical data located
    in HR records –when digital records are created, paper records
    containing sensitive data can be destroyed, creating a more secure
    environment
  • Improved disaster recovery – should there be a natural disaster, data is now safer (and redundant) in the Cloud, rather than on paper in a warehouse or office

What do those who scan and Wolfe especially like about their S2050 Scanners?

  • Excellent ability to handle mixed document batches, including aligning
    pages, removing punch hole marks, and dropping out colors from
    forms, all automatically
  • Image quality, with Perfect Page technology often making scanned images even better than originals
  • Speed of throughput, operating at full rated speeds even with multiple
    image-improving features turned on
  • Saving time through less need for pre- and post-sorting of documents
  • Data and feed accuracy, as high image quality translates to precise information and 99.99% feed accuracy means every document is captured

With an end-to-end solution in place and customer, user, and management satisfaction at a high point, Wolfe noted that the next initiative in Truck Country’s queue is implementing distributed scanning at dealership locations so documents no longer have to be mailed to headquarters. Again, postage and manual-labor time and costs will be greatly reduced. “Coming into the 21st century in terms of digital workflows and processes has been a big hit here,” Wolfe concludes. “And we have DEI and Alaris to thank for turning this vision into a very productive reality.”

More ways for DEI and Alaris to keep on trucking

Truck Country’s initiatives have helped DEI advance similar programs for other transportation organizations. Working closely with Alaris, DEI is now offering exceptionally competitive pricing to all truck dealerships using Procede Software. “Alaris is now a permanent paperless office platform partner, through Dynamic Excellence, with Procede Software due to the success of this platform to four truck dealerships,” said Abrams. “We expect at least 200 more dealerships to move to this ECM solution in the next five years, with even more on the horizon after that.”

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