Spectrum Housing Group has also moved towards paper-free operations with the introduction of an electronic document scanning and retrieval system from ORS that uses barcode technology to capture and index the files and convert them into a digital format. As part of the pre-scanning process, ORS created a header sheet with barcodes containing unique details about the tenant and property directly from Spectrum’s housing management system.
Tony Blows, divisional director of IT, Spectrum Housing Group, said, “Without the introduction of digitally-captured documents, we would have always faced the issue of how to manage the increasing volume of paper. By outsourcing the document scanning process, we have been able to get on with running our business and focus on providing our tenants with better services.”
The barcode system has been so successful that they have also been embedded in the annual rent review letters from Western Challenge, one of Spectrum’s subsidiaries.
Western Challenge generates around 36,000 documents every year relating to the Rent Review, printed by an external company. By automatically adding a unique barcode to each tenant’s letter and then requiring each tenant to respond by returning that letter, each reply can be instantly attached to the tenant file. In addition, a print file of PDF images created for the print run is now sent electronically to ORS who simply import the data into the tenant file application so that the right letter is linked to the corresponding file through the barcode information.
The Western Challenge customer service team can now deal with tenant queries faster and more accurately, while Spectrum itself no longer needs an off-site document storage facility, has removed the administrative burden of managing paper documents and now has more efficient and automated business processes.