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Price Brothers (UK) Ltd – a Document Management Case Study

June 20, 2011

An Electronic Document Management, Channel Partner Case Study –

Meeting the document compliance needs of civil engineering organisations

Exact replication of an existing manual filing system in an electronic alternative is allowing civil engineering firm Price Brothers (UK) Ltd to demonstrate compliance and gain immediate access to documents.

Making information easy to find

Records Management service provider Castle Document Management and ProcessFlows have been working together for 13 years. Castle provide a range of document archiving solutions, which can be anything from off-site physical storage of documents, through to full on-premise, electronic archive and retrieval solutions using OpenText Alchemy from ProcessFlows.

As a Channel Partner, Castle has access to support and back-up from ProcessFlows’ experienced Services Team (who have over 20 years of Alchemy knowledge), for both their in-house document conversion activities and their on-premise, customer installations.

There has therefore never been any need for the company to invest in training staff to support Alchemy. This has allowed them to focus on what they are best at – sorting out what to do with all the paper and data that organisations need to retain for compliance.

A 25 year civil engineering project generates a lot of documents

Castle customer, Price Brothers (UK) Ltd, based in Wadebridge, Surrey, provides consulting services to manufacturers of pre-stressed concrete cylinder pipe for the water industry.

For over 25 years, Price Brothers has been part of the Great Man-Made River water supply project in Libya, a project set up to bring fresh water from deep under the Sahara Desert to coastal towns and cities. They were responsible for the original design of this 1600 km underground network of pipes and aqueducts, which is recognised as being the largest of its type in the world.

Over this time, they have amassed a huge library of documents. Current project documentation alone is estimated to be three quarters of a million paper documents – a mixture of drawings, plans and critical correspondence.

Retention of records is critical

In industries such as civil engineering, documents provide the primary route for evidence based verification and traceability and allow the organisation to demonstrate compliance with customer requirements.

Assurance records also become a fundamental point of reference when determining compliance with the intended design and help to satisfy the requirements of building control and health and safety bodies. They also insure that a contractor can demonstrate a duty of care and that the end product is fit for purpose.

Transforming paper documents into electronic format

Documents were bursting out of filing cabinets throughout the office. They had run out of space and there were also concerns about the security of continuing to store paper documents – fire, flood etc.

Locating documents would obviously be quicker if they were in electronic format, as they could be accessed from the desktop, rather than having to be pulled from bulging filing cabinets.

The electronic filing system exactly replicates the manual system users are familiar with

Using a Alchemy document management solution, Castle has been able to provide an electronic filing cabinet for Price Brothers which exactly replicates and retains their manual filing system – indexing structure, folders, files etc.

Scanned images are delivered to Price Brothers on CDs, which have an embedded read-only version of Alchemy, enabling users to access the data contained in the repository.

In the future there is the option for Castle to host the Alchemy repository. Users would then be able to access their documents from any web enabled device. Either way, there is no need for a dedicated document storage server.

Electronic Document Management means no more filing cabinets and easy desktop access to information

Searching for information and drawings is now a quick and easy desktop function. Documents can be retrieved and viewed from the CDs at the click of a mouse.

Office space taken up by large filing cabinets has been reclaimed, as there is no longer a need to retain the paper documents.

Having dealt with current project documentation, Castle is continuing to work with Price Brothers to electronically archive older information. Once the process has been completed and everything is in electronic format, backed-up and secure, the paper will be securely destroyed, in line with compliance regulations.

Partner Quote

One of the biggest benefits of partnering with ProcessFlows is being able to draw on their technical expertise with no ‘investment’ on our part. This is enabling us to further widen the range of services we can offer, including hosted solutions and workflow.
Greg Bone, Managing Director, Castle Document Management

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