Point-of-Entry Document Capture

A proof of delivery case with high ROI

This case study looks at how building materials merchant Huws Gray used Kodak Capture Pro and the Kodak i2000 document scanner series to optimize efficiency and make its customers more satisfied by digitizing shipping documents at the point of entry.

Digitizing shipping documents to enhance efficiency and customer satisfaction

Huws Gray is a supplier of building materials to construction sites. The company has 44 branches/offices from where it serves construction companies.

A few years ago Huws Gray was faced with several challenges that involved the digitization of paper. To understand the challenge, it’s important to look at the core business and nature of the company and the scale of its operations. Furthermore, keep in mind that Huws Gray ships building materials to construction sites where often many people work at the same time and in sometimes harsh conditions (just think about the weather).

The business operations, processes and document flows

The model of the company looks as follows:

  • Construction companies call Huws Gray to order the materials (bricks, cement etc.) needed on their construction site.
  • An employee takes and processes the order, the goods are prepared and a truck driver is sent to the site.
  • The truck driver has a shipping document which is signed at the site (proof of delivery), for instance by the site’s supervisor.
  • The shipping document goes back to the branch, is handed over to a responsible, an invoice gets made and the document gets filed.

The document capture challenges

The challenges that arose before Huws Gray changed part of that were mainly related to the manual parts of the process.

With all the materials needed on a larger construction site and many people working there it’s easy to imagine how a shipping document can get damaged, lost or misplaced.

While the people at Huws Gray carefully filed the shipping documents, getting access to the documents (and signatures) took time. When construction industry customers received an invoice they occasionally did not know what to do with them. They then called Huws Gray to know who had received the material and signed for reception, before paying the invoice. That was a rather time-consuming process.

Digitizing to sustain growth

As Huws Gray was a trusted partner for many construction companies and was growing, the problem became bigger. As said, today the company has 44 branches but in 2012 it already had 38 sending a total of 17,000 deliveries to constructions each month and employing 400 people.

You see the scale of the operation and how, despite the care the company paid to documents and the good ordering platform, the impact of even a small percentage of customers (about 5%) calling to know who signed a shipping document led to more back office work, costs and, along with the growth, longer waiting times before customers received an answer. It’s also important to know that sometimes one order could be sent by two branches. And 5% on a total of 17,000 deliveries is quite a bit after all.

The solution and ROI – scanning at the point of entry

To tackle these challenges and enhance efficiency and customer satisfaction, further reducing the risk of misplaced documents here is what was done:

  • By installing a document scanner in each branch, truck drivers could immediately scan shipping documents when coming back in the office.
  • At the same time shipping documents needed to be tracked back and attached to the original order in the system with 100% accuracy. To achieve this, each shipping document received a barcode with the order number before it was sent. By scanning it back in after delivery, using Kodak Capture Pro software and a partner solution, order and proof of delivery were matched.

After implementation, the response time was dramatically reduced as the scanned shipping documents could be found and sent with just one click on the mouse. Other benefits included less time needed for busy staff to perform back office operations so they could focus on selling and an even more trusted brand.

This year Huws Gray celebrates its 25th birthday and the company continued to grow. When we asked them about the ROI of their investment in 39 Kodak i2400 desktop scanners and 39 Kodak Capture Pro licenses, they told us they achieved ROI in less than one (1!) year, just considering the savings in time made on looking up shipping documents and increasing the speed of response to related customer inquiries.

With 44 offices, the company ordered more scanners to keep capturing at the point of entrance (literally): when truck drivers are back in the office.

Related solutions

Alaris Capture Pro

Capture Pro Software

  • Ideal for paper-intensive business applications
  • Extensive integration with ECM systems
  • Network and Import modules available
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i2420 Scanner

  • Up to 40 ppm color/ bw
  • Stow-or-go design for storing
  • Scan instantly with always-ready LED light


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