Thursday, November 26, 2009

MFPs/Copiers and the Panel - Scanning and Capture

I have held back comment on this one for far too long. What is up with the MFP manufacturers and what I call "Panel Insanity"? When it comes to scanning and capture, they want everything tied to the panel!!

So, I can understand, you make hardware. You want it to be as "all-in-one" as it can be, and give organizations a super powerful copy-scan-fax-print machine that can do it all.

But let's get serious for a minute, and talk about the drawbacks to panel processing for scanned documents:

  1. Although the panels are getting larger and larger with every generation, do we really want users standing at the copier, pecking away, entering their metadata? Is that the most efficient use of their time? Efficiency is so important, and getting the most out of employee time in this economic environment is absolutely required.
  2. Contention. When I want a copy, I want it now darnit. You scanners need to get out of my way, and yield to the almighty paper. Line at the copier? This is a bad thing.
  3. Scan versus Capture? I wrote an article on the differences between the two application types on my SharePoint specific blog: Scan versus Capture? Let's move away from scanning and use some automation to collect data, rather than manually enter it at the panel.
  4. Even though there are panel apps, there is almost always another component behind the scenes doing OCR, reading barcodes, etc. So now we have multiple failure points within the overall capture system. Keep it simple, the fewer application components, the better.

Just some thoughts on this topic.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Gartner Magic Quadrant

Great overview of the latest Gartner review of ECM