Customer Stories

Albertville City Schools

Albertville City Schools discovered the importance of having a managed backup solution first hand after experiencing a natural disaster.

Quick Facts

  • Softdocs customer since 2007
  • Implemented in Finance

Challenges

  • Challenging to find and access stored physical documents
  • Forms needed to be streamlined and centrally located

Solutions

The Softdocs ECM Platform™

  • Enterprise Content Management
  • Electronic Forms and Workflow
  • Print Customization and Delivery
  • Etrieve Backup

“It really hit home in 2010 when we experienced a tornado, and had it not been for a backup and disaster recovery plan, we would not have been able to process our payroll.”

Christy Mead | Chief Financial Officer | Albertville City Schools

Albertville City Schools was looking for a better way

Albertville City Schools became interested in finding a solution that would add more efficiency to their Finance department and create user friendly business processes for their employees.

They learned about Softdocs through their local Association of School Business Officials conference and decided to purchase the entire Softdocs ECM Platform. The electronic forms solution,in particular, captured their attention.

“The ability to access our forms from anywhere has been a great asset for the Business department and employees,” says Christy Mead.

Chief Financial Officer Christy Mead began working  for the district after Softdocs’ solutions had been implemented and quickly realized the solutions were not being used to their full potential. “Because of this, 
I needed the employees to be retrained,” said Mead.

Training is an integral part of the implementation process and essential for making a project successful. It ensures end users know how to use Softdocs solutions, as well as how the solutions relate to their daily tasks and business processes. “I found that employees didn’t really understand what was going on, but were just scanning because they were told to,” said Mead. Mead believes that in order for employees to fully embrace a major change, it is important to explain the picture as a whole and in a way that fits their needs.

“Now, we are all very anxious to add additional forms and applications to this system. It has really become a nice tool that all are eager to make sure runs properly.”

Reducing Paper & Storage

Like most districts, Albertville City Schools’ Business Office was housing their physical documents wherever storage was available. “By using [Softdocs’ solutions], we don’t have to go to the basement to hunt for a document” Mead said.

“The electronic forms solution allows us to access our forms from anywhere. This has helped workflow to be continuous with our professional development, leave, purchase orders, etc.”

“This is especially beneficial for those forms that would have normally been left on a desk or piled up due to 
an absence causing a bottleneck for employees,” shared Mead. Albertville City Schools hopes to expand their use of Softdocs solutions in the future. By adding additional electronic forms, they could reduce time spent managing paper documents.

Backup Solution

Albertville also purchased Etrieve Backup, a managed backup solution designed to meet the specific needs of Softdocs products. They realized firsthand the importance of protecting data when disaster struck in 2010.
Prior to Etrieve Backup, the district used an outdated tape system for backup. According to Mead, “you pray nothing goes wrong with the tapes.”

“The importance of backup and a disaster recovery plan really hit home after we experienced the tornado We would not have been able to process our payroll without Etrieve Backup.”

“By choosing Etrieve Backup and Softdocs, I am assured that all my important documents are backed up efficiently and effectively,” said Mead. “It is imperative that business offices have a disaster recovery procedure for their documents and that it be offsite.”

Mead feels they are still in the beginning stages of using the Softdocs ECM Platform to its full potential, but are becoming more efficient.

Future Expansion

After attending Bridge 2012, Softdocs’ user group conference, Mead came back with lots of new ideas.

“It was a great asset to those trying to learn what every-thing is,” she said. After hearing about Softdocs’ new customer advisory board (eCAB), Mead became interested in helping shape the next generation of Softdocs solutions. In early 2013, Mead joined eCAB as a board member and is now a voice of the customers and assists in guiding product direction. She has found that building a strong relationship with Softdocs has been especially helpful and appreciates the hardwork and continued support of the team.

“The team has been a great asset for us in our learning curve with electronic forms,” Mead said. As with all sales, expectations and reality often differ, but Mead shared that Softdocs was “near close” to giving an accurate description about what the Softdocs ECM Platform would allow the district to do. Mead has since recommended Softdocs to other schools. One piece of advice that she tells other school systems when using Softdocs is to take time to really develop the electronic forms.

“Make sure that you take advantage of what the system can do, instead of only using a portion of it. When really used to its potential, it makes for a great program.”

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