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HK JEBN kicks off journey to optimize document management

Teresa Leung | Feb. 14, 2013
Founded in 1998, HK JEBN retails a wide range of products including birds' nests, cordyceps, premium food, dried seafood, health products, Japanese food, and ready-to-serve products made locally at its own factories.

Founded in 1998, HK JEBN retails a wide range of products including birds' nests, cordyceps, premium food, dried seafood, health products, Japanese food, and ready-to-serve products made locally at its own factories.

HK JEBN now runs 25 retail stores in Hong Kong, Macau, and Guangzhou. To cope with rapid business growth, HK JEBN plans to move its six factories and warehouse facilities, its office, and a laboratory of 100,000 square feet across Hong Kong to the new seven-story, 180,000 square-feet HK JEBN Group Center in Tai Wai, New Territories.

As it's moving into a new space in a phase-by-phase manner over a few months, the firm believes it's also time to consolidate its printing devices and implement ways to manage documents more efficiently.

Reducing devices and waste

According to Johnny Lung, HK JEBN's IT manager, the firm had about 80 printers among its facilities. "Managing this number of devices was time-consuming," said Lung. "This was why we aimed to reduce the number and connect printers to the company's network for easier management." The company also wanted to dispose of its old printers in an environmentally friendly way.

HK JEBN also looked for ways to improve its document processing. The documents circulating around the company were in different formats that staffers updated and verified manually, Lung said. "The lack of a standard format, automation, verification, versioning, and collaboration mechanisms resulted in errors that were difficult to identify and trace," he said.

After reviewing various vendor proposals, HK JEBN chose Fuji Xerox and began the project last December. According to Lung, the vendor provided a detailed proposal in two weeks and did a site visit for a thorough study of the company's document management needs.

With the move of office and facilities underway, Lung said the number of printers has been reduced to 40. Fuji Xerox also helped the company recycle the 80 legacy printers--most of which were black-and-white machines. After the new printers are set up and connected to the corporate network, the IT team experience smoother printer management, said Lung.

Thanks to Fuji Xerox's automatic document processing system, the firm has reduced errors created by the lack of automatic versioning and verification, Lung said, adding that the amount of time staffers spend on managing documents has also decreased.

"So far," he said, "[the deployment] has helped slash operating costs by about 50%," he pointed out.

Next step: a DMS

According to Lung, the company plans to implement a document management system (DMS) in Q2 this year. He said that Fuji Xerox will help analyze requirements from HK JEBN's different departments and design a relevant system.

While expecting the DMS to be expandable and integrated with other office automation systems, Lung said the right DMS must facilitate document scanning and archiving, e-form processing and work-flow communications, document sharing, document collaboration, version control, as well as supporting a knowledge management dashboard.

"We also need the DMS to support secure document scanning," he noted. "Now many staffers are reluctant [to scan a huge number of documents]," he said. "A secure [document-scanning] service will encourage them to do so in the future."

 

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