Executive Secretariat Correspondence Management
The USDA Office of the Executive Secretariat (OES) is responsible for responding to all correspondence addressed to the Secretary of the USDA.
OES needed an enterprise-wide correspondence management system. The system needed to store and manage all related documents and provide ad hoc workflow to manage the process. USDA required the system to be web-based and capable of supporting over 30,000 users in multiple geographic locations.
QFlow implemented a customized correspondence management application. Incoming hard-copy letters are scanned and faxed letters are assembled. The system OCRs each incoming letter and converts it to a PDF file. The letter is processed by a Content Analysis system which compares it with all letters received within the last 30 days to see if it is a duplicate. If so, the system links it to the other letters in the same mail campaign. A single response is prepared for all mail campaign letters.
Each letter is added to a work folder. The work folder also stores metadata about the letter and other electronic files used in developing its response letter. The folder is routed through an assigned workflow. The workflow is a list of tasks, assignees, and due dates for creating the response letter. Each assignee performs their task and then the folder is routed to the next assignee.
Users can perform ad-hoc searches for documents and folders and view the current status of workflows. The application is integrated with a DOD 5015.2-compliant Records Management System for managing archived folders. The application was moved into production in October 2005. The system currently stores over 1.6 Million documents and supports over 3,000 users.
Incoming letters are stored electronically and do not need to be manually processed in paper format. Any employee within any USDA agency and location can be included in workflows. Managers can see the current status of the response process. Users have easy access to existing documents and folders to support research requests. Turnaround times for responses to incoming letters have improved and misplaced correspondence has been eliminated. System security ensures that only authorized users can view documents and folders.
QFlow consultants designed, developed and implemented the correspondence management application. QFlow converted approximately 600,000 existing electronic folders in departmental systems to the new system. QFlow developed and implemented new modules to meet other USDA requirements within the same Enterprise Content Management (ECM) system framework. QFlow has continued to provide application enhancements, upgrades, system maintenance and technical support services.
− Oracle Stellent Universal Content Manager;
− Oracle Universal Records Manager;
− Kofax Ascent Capture, Ascent Capture Internet Server, and PDF Image+Text;
− Content Analyst;
− IBM WebSphere;
− Oracle 9i;
− Java J2EE; and
− Spicer ViewCafe
− Spicer Image-a-X
− J2EE Application