LODI - A Lodi startup is selling new technology to help businesses
deal with an age-old problem: wrestling with paperwork.
ScanAndHost Inc. - of www.ScanAndHost.com - is a family business involving
brothers, Brandon and Brad Stevens, and their father, Richard, a longtime
Lodi certified public accountant. They have paired state-of-the-art,
off-the-shelf scanning equipment with original software that applies
a character-recognition program to high-quality photo scans of business
The character-recognition processing is 98 percent to 99 percent accurate
and enables a business to do a search for needed documents that otherwise
might be hard or time-consuming to find, sitting in piles, bins, drawers,
boxes or what-have-you, Brad Stevens said.
"We want people to think of it as a search engine, like when you Google
something," Brandon said.
The one-time charge: 12 cents per page. The company scans the documents
- as many as 4,000 documents in a couple of hours - then stores the
data on a Web site accessible via user identification and password.
Document images are high quality and can either be e-mailed or printed
DOCUMENT MANAGEMENT Magazine was established as the Scanning Technology
newsletter in 1987 by top industry analyst Richard N. Stover, and became
Document Management one year later. The focus was on useful information
regarding the technologies and tools that affect the Engineering and
Manufacturing industies; utilities; and federal, state, and local governments.
Targeted toward end users in the Fortune 1000 companies, our publication
was a success and our coverage soon expanded to also include Financial
Services and Healthcare. Little did we know, our circulation would soon
Over the next few years, the newsletter continued to grow in readership
and in1991 became a four-color magazine. In 1995, docmanage.com saw
it's debut as a technology information site and an extension of the
print publication. In 2000, we discontinued the regular print publication
and moved all of our material over to docmanage.com. We still print
and distribute Special Industry Reports, Buyer's Guides, and other special
editions to our established readership.
Document management systems commonly provide storage, versioning,
metadata, security, as well as indexing and retrieval capabilities. Here
is a description of these components:
is typically stored for each document. Metadata may, for example,
include the date the document was stored and the identity of the user
storing it. The DMS may also extract metadata from the document automatically
or prompt the user to add metadata. Some systems also use optical
character recognition on scanned images, or perform text extraction
on electronic documents. The resulting extracted text can be used
to assist users in locating documents by identifying probable keywords
or providing for full text search capability, or can be used on its
own. Extracted text can also be stored as a component of metadata,
stored with the image, or separately as a source for searching document
Many document management systems attempt to integrate document management
directly into other applications, so that users may retrieve existing
documents directly from the document management system repository,
make changes, and save the changed document back to the repository
as a new version, all without leaving the application. Such integration
is commonly available for office
suites and e-mail
or collaboration/groupware software. Integration often uses open standards
such as ODMA,
to allow integration with other software and compliance with internal
documents. Indexing may be as simple as keeping track of unique
document identifiers; but often it takes a more complex form, providing
classification through the documents' metadata or even through word
indexes extracted from the documents' contents. Indexing exists mainly
to support retrieval. One area of critical importance for rapid retrieval
is the creation of an index topology.
documents. Storage of the documents often includes management
of those same documents; where they are stored, for how long, migration
of the documents from one storage media to another (Hierarchical
storage management) and eventual document destruction.
Retrieve the electronic documents from the storage. Although the
notion of retrieving a particular document is simple, retrieval in
the electronic context can be quite complex and powerful. Simple retrieval
of individual documents can be supported by allowing the user to specify
the unique document identifier, and having the system use the basic
index (or a non-indexed query on its data store) to retrieve the document.
More flexible retrieval allows the user to specify partial search
terms involving the document identifier and/or parts of the expected
metadata. This would typically return a list of documents which match
the user's search terms. Some systems provide the capability to specify
expression containing multiple keywords or example phrases expected
to exist within the documents' contents. The retrieval for this kind
of query may be supported by previously-built indexes, or may perform
more time-consuming searches through the documents' contents to return
a list of the potentially relevant documents. See also Document
Document security is vital in many document management applications.
Compliance requirements for certain documents can be quite complex
depending on the type of documents. For instance the Health
Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) requirements
dictate that medical documents have certain security requirements.
Some document management systems have a rights management module that
allows an administrator to give access to documents based on type
to only certain people or groups of people.
Workflow is a complex problem and some document management systems
have a built in workflow module. There are different types of workflow.
Usage depends on the environment the EDMS is applied to. Manual workflow
requires a user to view the document and decide who to send it to.
Rules-based workflow allows an administrator to create a rule that
dictates the flow of the document through an organization: for instance,
an invoice passes through an approval process and then is routed to
the accounts payable department. Dynamic rules allow for branches
to be created in a workflow process. A simple example would be to
enter an invoice amount and if the amount is lower than a certain
set amount, it follows different routes through the organization.
Collaboration should be inherent in a EDMS. Documents should be
capable of being retrieved by an authorized user and worked on. Access
should be blocked to other users while work is being performed on
Versioning is a process by which documents are checked in or out
of the document management system, allowing users to retrieve previous
versions and to continue work from a selected point. Versioning is
useful for documents that change over time and require updating, but
it may be necessary to go back to a previous copy.