Content Management Software Supports Bio Technology Firm

Since 1987, Integrated DNA Technologies (IDT) has been a major force in advancing biotechnology research both as a leading supplier of custom strands of DNA (also known as oligonucleotides) and a developer of innovative new biotechnologies.

Through offices in Coralville, IA (headquarters), Skokie, IL, San Diego, CA, Glasgow, Scotland, and Leuven, Belgium, IDT, an ISO 9001 company, serves a global network of more than 77,000 customers ranging from university labs to international pharmaceutical companies.

IDT processes orders for thousands of products a day with customers using the DNA strands IDT manufactures for:

o Diagnostic tests for genetic diseases, like breast cancer or cystic fibrosis
o Diagnostic tests for infectious diseases, like Hepatitis or AIDS
o Research to discover new drugs or treatments for a variety of diseases
o Producing safer and more plentiful agricultural products

“At one point, IDT relied heavily on paper to coordinate sales and production activities and drive workflow across our Front Office, Lab, Shipping, Invoicing, and Collection Teams,” said Bob Schafbuch, Assistant Vice President, Enterprise Application Group. “As orders escalated, our teams became overwhelmed with paper.”

In December 2001, IDT installed an electronic content management system designed to streamline IDT’s sales process and to make information more readily accessible. The company converted its hardcopy sales documents to electronic images that they uploaded into a server-hosted content management software system.

To support information access across multiple departments and office locations, IDT configured its content management system as a thin-client application, allowing IDT personnel to search for, retrieve and view documents over the company’s intranet. OCR (optical character recognition) was applied as documents were imaged – allowing IDT the convenience of conducting full-text searches on documents stored in the system. IDT also integrated its content management software with the company’s order entry system, capturing e-mails and faxes.

While the system was initially designed to support sales and order entry, IDT quickly realized the benefit of managing information in a less paper-intensive environment. IDT extended the use of its ECM system to additional departments including: training, purchasing, material control and human resources.

“As we’ve reduce our reliance on paper-based processes, we have continued to achieve greater efficiencies with our internal processes,” Schafbuch says. “We are processing and storing less paper and sharing more information. Best of all, we have empowered our workforce with broader access to the information they need to perform their job functions.”

Nancy Hallowell is director of marketing and customer support for D2Xchange. a full-service provider of electronic data and document management solutions to capture, manage, retrieve and distribute information more effectively and securely.

D2Xchange offers the following services, which are commonly referred to as “paperless office solutions:”
• D2Xchange operates a scanning bureau to convert paper documents to electronic PDF or TIF images.
• D2Xchange provides data archiving services tailored to capturing payroll data and reports.
• D2Xchange also installs and supports content management software to create a secure, online or server-hosted repository for electronic documents.

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