Sorell becomes an infoXpert

Article image - Sorell becomes an infoXpert Heather McKillop and Susy Coppola from Sorellís Information Management Team.

Located 25 kilometres northeast of Hobart, Tasmania’s Sorell Council has implemented a new electronic document management system (EDMS) to streamline its records management practices.

Council’s Information Management Coordinator, Heather McKillop, said that at the start of 2007 Sorell identified a number of objectives it wanted to achieve in the area of records management. These included:

  • being able to assist staff with information and records enquiries more efficiently and effectively
  • providing better security to records by reducing the risk inherent with physical documents
  • providing an opportunity to reduce the physical space requirements needed for corporate records
  • capturing corporate information more effectively
  • meeting Council’s legislative obligations associated with records management.

Heather McKillop said the new infoXpert software meets all of these objectives.

“All written correspondence that comes into Council is now scanned into the system and registered, then forwarded by email to the relevant department, person or group of people for actioning,” she said. “If the information bypasses our Information Management Team, the staff member that receives the correspondence can scan and register it themselves, which ensures we have all documents registered in our system. In the past, it was difficult to verify whether all documents were registered, and we had the constant threat of losing or misplacing important information.”

Heather McKillop said the EDMS is not only a part of Council’s risk management strategy, but ensures Council can deliver better customer service.

“If there was a fire, for example, Council would lose hard copies of everything on file,” she said. “Having information stored electronically means we can easily back it up, and it can be simply recovered if need be.

“Having information sent directly to the relevant person or people, and the fact that the system links to all relevant information, also makes follow up much quicker, thus leading to better customer service.”

Heather McKillop said change management was a significant factor during implementation, as most employees had never experienced an EDMS before.

“One on one training was provided to all staff, regular workshops and communications were conducted, and a competition was held to name the system,” she said. “This increased staff’s awareness of the proposed benefits that were being introduced.”

As infoXpert is a web based system, all its contents are available to authorised users anywhere, anytime.

Council is currently in the process of scanning archived property and building information into the system, so that it is all stored in the one location. This will assist with the system’s latest feature, which allows staff working with Council’s geographic information system (GIS) to also access property information through the one application.

Council is now looking to facilitate integration between the EDMS and its property and rating system – Council Manager.

Although the project is finished, Council is committed to a continual improvement process. Council will continue to liaise with staff on ways the system can be better used, how the file structure can be improved and how customer requirements can be better met.

For further information contact Heather McKillop on (03) 6265 6400.