Salumatics, Inc. needed to upgrade its scanners and increase production capabilities without increasing its fees to stay competitive.
Purchase scanners with increased functionality to eliminate problems with “tumbled documents” and manage mile-long fetal monitoring strips, reduce maintenance and training requirements, and increase throughput.
Two KODAK i780 Scanners, two KODAK i1440 Scanners, and several KODAK i260 Scanners in remote client locations.
“Scanners from Kodak allow us to offer exclusive services and still remain competitive.”
~ Shawn Morrison, Chief Technology Officer, Salumatics, Inc.
|Talk about brand loyalty: can you imagine a service bureau sticking with just one manufacturer’s scanners exclusively for the entire time the service bureau has been in business? That’s exactly what Salumatics, Inc. has been doing since it launched its document conversion business in 2002 with four Kodak i840 Scanners.|
“When we evolved from a consulting firm into a document imaging service bureau, we selected the Kodak i840 Scanners because they were the only scanners capable of scanning dual-stream images (color and bitonal at the same time),” remembers Shawn Morrison, Chief Technology Officer of Salumatics, Inc.
“Since then, our business has expanded, and as our clients and their requirements have grown, we have upgraded to more powerful scanners from Kodak.”
One brand of scanners for a variety of paper: “We use 100% KodakScanners in our shop”
Salumatics, Inc. is one of the largest document conversion service companies in North America, with approximately 200 employees and 50 clients. Its facilities in Montreal, Quebec and Mississauga, Ontario convert medical records for healthcare facilities into electronic images.
What sets Salumatics apart from its competitors is the ability to develop custom software applications that index and upload the electronic images into each client’s electronic filing system.
“Only our proprietary software, which is built on Captiva’s SDK and designed for scanners from Kodak, allows users to scan in dualstream format,” says Morrison.
The company receives boxes from clients filled with folders of patient files. Salumatics’ production workers prep, scan, and index the documents down to the document level to match each client’s unique filing system.
“Because the healthcare industry is in the early stages of electronic records management, we get a mix of paper historical paper and newer paper. Patient charts usually contain old documents on NCR paper, EKG strips, photos, and medical records on a variety of types, shapes, and sizes of paper,” notes Noreen Fletcher, Salumatics’ Director of Operations, Conversion Services.
“Kodak scans really well in an environment like ours, with so many different types of paper, and in such high volumes. In our two facilities combined, we scan 10 million images a month, or about 300,000 images each day. With our scanners from Kodak, we just set the scanner according to the client and type of paper, and we’re good to go.”
Salumatics is also confident in the quality and reliability of scanners from Kodak and Perfect Page image processing technology for document cleanup (versus VRS, or Virtual ReScan). That’s why “We use 100% Kodak Scanners in our shop,” says Morrison.
Page orientation is “a revolutionary development from Kodak”
Many of the documents Salumatics scans are printed on both sides, which means the documents need to be flipped in order to be scanned correctly—something referred to as “tumbled documents.” These documents have to be scanned in landscape or portrait mode and then rotated manually, which is a laborintensive job for the indexer.
So when Salumatics realized the KODAK i780 Scanner has page orientation functionality known as calendar mode, the company quickly purchased two of the units. Salumatics then built an exclusive software program based on the KODAK i780 Scanner. The proprietary software combined with the calendar mode functionality has eliminated the problem of tumbled documents.
“The KODAK i780 Scanner’s calendar mode capability is a revolutionary development for Kodak,” says Morrison. “It removes the laborious part of the indexing process, because the scanner recognizes the orientation before we have to fix it. Together with our exclusive software, the KODAK i780 Scanner allows us to get 100% reliability and speed in our operation.”
Duty cycle is “a quantum leap forward for Kodak”
The more Salumatics can reduce its labor costs and maximize its productivity, the lower its prices, and the greater the company’s profitability. Everything adds up: time required for training, time required for cleaning, and of course, downtime when scanners are offline for routine maintenance.
That’s why Morrison considers the duty cycle on the KODAK i780 Scanner “a quantum leap forward for Kodak” in terms of maintenance.
“It’s intuitive and quick to clean,” notes Morrison, “which reduces our training time, reduces our maintenance time, and reduces the time we are offline. As a result, our labor costs have gone down and our productivity has gone up—and that’s not even taking into account the KODAK i780 Scanner’s increased throughput capability.”
Special document format option opens new revenue stream
When a longtime client came to Salumatics with boxes of mile-long fetal monitoring strips, the company realized it was time to purchase a few KODAK i1440 Scanners—or risk losing critical information … and a key customer.
“Fetal monitoring strips are very long. You can’t cut them because you could lose information. And it would take years to cut anyway. The KODAK i1440 Scanners give us the special document format option which allows us to scan these mile-long strips continuously,” says Fletcher.
The KODAK i1440 Scanner automatically scans the long strips into 8 ½" x 11" images in a row. If need be, the images can be stitched back into one long strip. “We now enjoy a new revenue stream as we land clients looking to scan fetal monitoring strips to include in electronic medical records,” adds Fletcher.
Empowering clients in remote locations
For small clients in faraway locations, the freight costs to ship documents to Salumatics would be prohibitive. Instead, Salumatics provides KODAK i260 Scanners (predecessors to KODAK i1420 Scanners), training, and software to enable clients in remote areas to patch their documents to Salumatics for indexing. “The KODAK i260 Scanner is a battlefield tested, durable model,” says Morrison.
Fletcher adds, “The transportation costs for those sites would be high, so we train customers to scan their own documents and FTP them to us. Here, we index and upload the files to the clients’ proper imaging system and format.”
A win-win for Salumatics and its clients
As Salumatics has upgraded its Kodak equipment over the years, the company’s clients have benefited from higher quality images, increased capabilities and lower prices.
“With each new scanner we’ve added, our labor costs have gone down and our services have gone up. Scanners from Kodak allow us to offer exclusive services and still remain competitive,” says Morrison.
To learn more about Kodak Document Imaging Products and Services, contact your Authorized Reseller of Kodak Products, call 1.800.944.6171