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Millennia Group News

Summer 2014 Newsletter

Friday, July 25, 2014

Newsletter Summary

Expanding our Workflow Capabilities | Millennia Group News

Expanding our Workflow Capabilities

Over the past 5 years Millennia Group has been fortunate enough to work with our clients to improve many business processes by implementing document workflow within FileStar, our document imaging, retrieval and workflow application. Read More...

Demand for Imaging Services Gains Strength | Millennia Group News

Demand for Imaging Services Gains Strength

Since the financial crisis began some companies delayed their imaging projects choosing instead to save current cash flow over future return on investment. That trend has started to change. As the economy picks up, companies are looking at process efficiency to offset potential costly hiring requirements. Imaging is certainly part of the efficiency toolbox. Read More...

Realcomm Recap | Millennia Group News

Realcomm Recap

Millennia Group was an attendee and sponsor of the 2014 Realcomm trade show in Las Vegas in June. Realcomm is focused on technology for the commercial real estate industry. It is our 14th year of participation in the show and it is always a great venue for connecting with our customers, peers and prospects. Read More...

Training | Millennia Group News

Training

I am a firm believer in the benefits of training. A few of my reasons are as follows: - Training leads to more consistent results - Training leads to a shorter learning curve - Training reduces the incidence of bad hires. Read More...

Cost Justification | Millennia Group News

Cost Justification

There are hundreds of inputs that could go into a thorough cost justification analysis for a complex project. We cannot possibly list them all here and the inputs vary by project. The important thing to remember is that every project should be viewed through a return on investment lense. Read More...

Expanding our Workflow Capabilities

CollectDocs Update

Over the past 5 years Millennia Group has been fortunate enough to work with our clients to improve many business processes by implementing document workflow within FileStar, our document imaging, retrieval and workflow application. Some examples of those workflows include lease administration, customer orders, employee onboarding, pension payout, disability claims and report distribution.

Each workflow is unique and yet has some similarities. Therefore, we have created a flexible workflow framework that allows our clients to achieve the process efficiency that they need at a reasonable cost.

Current workflow modules provide for a wide variety of status options including approve, pause, redirect, escalate and decline steps as well as send out appropriate notifications. Workflow participants can have "substitutes" for vacations or sick days. Administrators can monitor the workflow progress using the workflow reports and custom reports can be created to highlight critical dates or elapsed times.

If your company has a process that involves routing documents through various steps, please give us a call, we would love to see if FileStar can make that a more efficient and cost effective process.


Demand for Imaging Services Gains Strength

CollectDocs Update

Since the financial crisis began some companies delayed their imaging projects choosing instead to save current cash flow over future return on investment. That trend has started to change. As the economy picks up, companies are looking at process efficiency to offset potential costly hiring requirements. Imaging is certainly part of the efficiency toolbox.

Millennia Group has seen its imaging services business pick up considerably in the past year and is helping companies get a positive ROI. If you have had imaging projects on hold, maybe now is the time to revisit them.


Realcomm Recap

CollectDocs Update

Millennia Group was an attendee and sponsor of the 2014 Realcomm trade show in Las Vegas in June. Realcomm is focused on technology for the commercial real estate industry. It is our 14th year of participation in the show and it is always a great venue for connecting with our customers, peers and prospects.

The opening session included representatives from Google, Microsoft, Intel and Cisco with the keynote by noted author and visionary Geoffrey Moore. It was a powerful group of companies represented in the opening session for the commercial real estate industry. They helped start off a great show where plenty of information sharing and industry collaboration take place.


Training

CollectDocs Update

I am a firm believer in the benefits of training. A few of my reasons are as follows:

  • Training leads to more consistent results
  • Training leads to a shorter learning curve
  • Training reduces the incidence of bad hires

These are all positives for any company and for all employees. So why is training neglected or avoided? I can think of a few negatives to training also, such as:

  • Training takes time and time is money
  • Training is boring and nobody pays attention
  • Training is difficult in a fast changing business world

These may have some merit but they do not outweigh the benefits noted above. So what does this have to do with document workflow or imaging? As it turns out, document workflow and imaging can be a big change for the workforce and the output or outcomes can contain mission critical information. Therefore, training should be an important component.

Technology has provided us with some great tools to make training easier and make it appealing to more employees. For instance, training videos can be very useful and are on-demand and available anywhere. Those characteristics make videos appealing to many employees. There are also hands on training applications to give users the feel and experience of using the actual application, but the application is not live. This lets users get over the fear that they may "break" something in the application. Training sometimes is about trying things. "I wonder what would happen if I did this" or "What if I click on this button here". These applications can be interactive and provide instant feedback.

This is not to say that you don't need to create a training manual. Some employees will feel more comfortable with a manual that they can flip through to find answers. Pretty soon that need may go away and all users will "flip" through the online help. In-person training is of course still a popular and effective method. And in-person may mean remote using GoToMeeting or WebEx or Link.

The bottom line is that training can be done and should be offered in a variety of formats to effectively reach the greatest percentage of employees. Training is also continuous. Applications and hardware are changing all the time. New releases of software or changes in workflow should always be accompanied by follow up training, even if it is only 15 minutes.

Selfishly from an application provider's perspective, I know that the value of an application increases as the level and quality of training increases. The good news is that it is a win win situation because the value to the client also increases with greater productivity.


Cost Justification

CollectDocs Update

There are hundreds of inputs that could go into a thorough cost justification analysis for a complex project. We cannot possibly list them all here and the inputs vary by project. The important thing to remember is that every project should be viewed through a return on investment lense.

The analysis could be very simple and undocumented. For instance, should you fly everyone in for a quarterly sales meeting or use an online conferencing tool. The analysis to arrive at the acceptable answer may simply be done in someone's head.

For a complex issue, the analysis probably will involve a spreadsheet, inputs from multiple parties and some digging in old invoices or financial statements. Decisions may be aided by the numbers on the spreadsheet, but there may also be some intangibles that are difficult to quantify.

Some intangibles might include legal ramifications such as records retention or SOX compliance. Other intangibles might be related to employee moral or business values. For instance, it might be significantly less costly to off-shore the customer service hotline, but the business mission statement calls for personalized customer service.

The other main issue of cost justification is the time frame. It may have a positive ROI but it might take 10 years. Ten years is probably not an acceptable time frame in most business decisions. Most companies look at two or three years or less for a positive return on investment, but it will vary by company, industry and project.

Be open about cost justification. Spend the little extra time that it takes to gather the inputs and do the calculations. Share that information with your vendors and get your vendors free inputs and advice. At the end of the day, a winning rational decision will be the result.