With solutions from Kodak Alaris, a federal agency successfully addressed the urgent need for compliance with federal mandates and FADGI guidelines while also making significant operational improvements that have created a more accessible information retrieval system for agency staff and the public they serve.
A federal government agency responsible for fostering business growth in the U.S. had become bogged down by mountains of paper documents amassed over many years. A pressing challenge was staring them in the face: to convert these massive paper archives into digital records in response to new federal mandates. The agency had to act swiftly to reinvent its operations and better serve the public.
Federal mandates M-19-21 and M-23-07 dictate that federal agencies must digitize all paper documents that are considered permanent records. The digitization of these records is just step one of a larger challenge. Agencies that need to submit their digital records to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) will also need to ensure that all permanent digital records comply with 3-Star image quality guidelines established by the Federal Agencies Digital Guidelines Initiative (FADGI).
Many government agencies are grappling with the daunting task of digitizing decades of paper archives. The federal mandates to digitize permanent records have created an urgency within the government sector to leverage technology solutions that modernize operations to achieve regulatory compliance and higher levels of productivity.
To help simplify this complex process and provide strategic guidance, the agency engaged Edge Digital Group, an IT consultancy that specializes in document management services.
The agency had to digitize their immense document archive while also managing the steady inflow of new paper documents. Every month, approximately 80 new boxes would arrive, each containing 2000 pieces of paper to process. Agency staff would then have to digitize these new documents and upload the information into a database for easy access and retrieval.
Another challenge is that the agency’s operations are not localized; they extend across the country through various satellite offices. Each office would ship boxes of paper documents to Washington D.C., where the staff of Edge Digital would scan them into the database. Following the scanning process, the documents would either be destroyed or shipped back to the originating satellite agency.
This operational model proved to be unsustainable, as it incurred hefty shipping costs and the constant transfer of documents across state lines posed significant risk in terms of information security and loss or damage in transit.
To help solve these complex problems and modernize the agency’s operations, Edge Digital Group relies on the Kodak i5250 FADGI Scanner, the Kodak S3140 Max Scanner, and Kodak Capture Pro Software. These powerful tools have made it easy to process a wide range of documents, including legal records, personnel files, and other permanent records that came from various government offices spread across the country.
“We can feed these scanners anything and they just take it.”
– Jon Stuck, Director of Scanning Operations at Edge Digital Group
Jon Stuck, Director of Scanning Operations at Edge Digital Group, praised the scanners from Kodak Alaris as “workhorses” that enabled Edge Digital to plow through the backlog at an impressive speed. “We can feed these scanners anything and they just take it.” This is a testament to the industry-leading document feeder technology and high-volume throughput built into these production scanners, which are running all day every day to digitize these enormous paper archives.
For the federal agency, the Kodak i5250 FADGI Scanners have proven to be the right fit for another reason. These scanners are unique in the market because they can operate in both FADGI and non-FADGI mode, which provides another level of efficiency and flexibility. The agency can confidently digitize their archives to meet any current or future output requirements.
“Kodak Alaris is the only solution provider that could deliver a FADGI scanning solution that can toggle between FADGI output modes, providing the flexibility the agency required, on top of superior output speed and data accuracy. ”
New protocols and procedures were established to help streamline the process. First, program offices complete a Program Compliance form and Chain of Custody form intended to increase records security and help Edge Digital staff understand the document types and classification details for the records they receive.
As soon as the records reach Edge Digital, the documents are fed into the scanners for high-speed digitization. Kodak Capture Pro Software automatically performs post-scan validation to ensure that all digital images pass quality control checks. The electronic files are then output to PDF with the agency’s file naming conventions applied automatically.
While Edge Digital continues their dedicated scanning services, the federal agency is determined to grow their capability to add more document scanners into various office locations with the goal of establishing sustainably efficient operations.
The results of this collaborative effort have been remarkable. With the help of leadership at Edge Digital Group and technology from Kodak Alaris, the agency is on track to eliminate their backlog and move forward with a system that prevents future backlogs.
The story is a testament to the power of collaboration and finding the right technology fit. Kodak Alaris is the only solution provider that could deliver a FADGI scanning solution that can toggle between FADGI output modes, providing the flexibility the agency required, on top of superior output speed and data accuracy.
This government agency’s journey from expensive manual operations into a future-ready digital agency is a tale of vision, collaboration, and solution expertise. By partnering with Edge Digital and leveraging solutions from Kodak Alaris, the agency successfully addressed the immediate need for compliance with federal mandates and image quality requirements while also making significant operational improvements that have created a more accessible and reliable information retrieval system for agency staff and the public they serve.