Managing information overload
The region needed a central, secure repository for storing and distributing electronic records. It also needed a way to enforce retention periods and disposition rules based on preset periods to help control risks, reduce storage costs and ensure regulatory compliance.
In 2000, the region began using electronic document management and records management solutions from two different software vendors to manage and store content, such as permitting records; reports and engineering project documents; operational records, including regional planning records; and legal and compliance documents. The region had been satisfied with the combined applications for many years, but in 2009, when it began to look at its IT migration path, it was determined that it was not possible to keep the same platform without a great deal of effort to maintain, update and extend the products and it was not cost effective.
A more flexible document and records management solution was needed to help streamline administrative processes, improve employee productivity through faster and easier information retrieval and provide a single, authoritative repository for storing and organizing electronic and physical documents. The region also required a more sophisticated records management solution to manage the classifications and retention schedules of all types of business content to safeguard the organization against the risk and cost of content.
Flexible OpenText platform improves user experience
Metro Vancouver issued an RFP to several vendors, and three were shortlisted. Based on the vendor demos, the region evaluated each solution and, in the end, selected OpenText™ Content Suite to provide a secure repository for organizing and sharing documents, and OpenText™ Records Management to control the retention of enterprise content, including paper and electronic documents, in accordance with organizational policies.
“In considering our document and records management requirements, ease of use was really important for us. We also wanted a system that could automatically profile documents, because in our previous environment, a pop-up screen came up and people had to complete it every time they saved a document. We wanted to improve the profiling process to make it almost invisible for the end user. As part of that, we wanted to increase the accuracy of that profiling,” says Chris Plagnol, Director, Board and Information Services/ Corporate Officer at Metro Vancouver. “One of the keys to our selection of OpenText was how easy it is to get a document in and back out. If I compare OpenText to our previous platform, it is a far more flexible product and the user experience is much better. We’re very happy with our decision to switch to OpenText.”
Having selected Records Management to automate the management of it electronic records, Metro Vancouver saw it was a perfect fit to install the OpenText™ Physical Objects module to enable the functionality for the lifecycle management of all of its physical and electronic records in one central repository.
The Physical Objects module allows for the tracking and management of physical items such as file folders, paper documents and boxes. Currently, the region is using the OpenText system to manage approximately 10,000 boxes kept in offsite storage.
“When someone opens a folder in Content Suite, they will see everything in context; they’ll see the physical folders, and they’ll see the electronic documents, which include scanned documents,” says Plagnol.