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Formfile Case Studies

Mancell

Mancell

ACCOUNTING & FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY CASE STUDY

Formfile Transforms Mancell's Filing System

About Mancell

Mancell is a medium size, full service Chartered Accounting Firm. Some time ago, Mancell has moved into new purpose-built offices. This move facilitated their expansion and gave them the opportunity to overhaul many of their office systems, their filing system being one of them. In addition, the merger between Mancell and MPA, which took place on April 1st, 2001, required the amalgamation of their information records.

The Competitive Edge

According to Mancell, Formfile’s competitive edge lay in the fact that its Information Management Consultant had had extensive experience in the accounting and financial services industry and consequently, was able to demonstrate a better and more detailed working knowledge than competitors. This involved providing a thorough diagnostic of what was involved, such as the measurement requirements and estimates of the number of binders and files that would be needed in order to meet the requirements of Mancell's business.
The Challenge: The Old ...

MANCELL

Over 4,000 files were located in approximately 30 4-drawer filing cabinets in various positions throughout the building Capacity had reached maximum level, providing approximately 60 linear meters of storage whilst occupying over 18 square meters of floor space
Identification system revolved around alpha recognition but no visual aids were incorporated, resulting in significant wastage of staff time in accessing the system
Misfiling potential was evident
Scattered location of files resulted in considerable time wasted by staff to locate files

MPA

Approximately 1,500 files, broken into 2 categories of clients i.e. Company and Individual
Majority of files' contents were loose, stored within manila covers requiring two-hole punching
System required approximately 20 linear meters of storage space
Company files were housed within individual reinforced boxes
Individual clients' files were housed in suspension pockets
Files did not have recognition coding resulting in such problems as staff time wastage, misfiling potential, excessive space requirements

Addressing the Challenge

Formfile conducted a thorough space and file audit of both the Mancell and MPA files and interviewed staff and management to learn how frequently they recover files, what difficulties they perceive they were having with their current filing system and the kind of outcome they would like to achieve. Based on Mancell and MPA's needs and requirements, Formfile then created and implemented a tailored solution.

Managing the Change to the New System

To speed up the conversion process, Formfile obtained a listing of all files in electronic format to commence standard off-site labelling program
Formfile Records Personnel staff worked on-site to transfer all existing Mancell file contents to 4,500 new, pre-labeled file covers and 1500 MPA files, minimising the strain on Mancell staff who were already under pressure to keep up with their daily tasks while coping with the move to the new offices
Formfile trained staff to use the new system

The New: So, were Mansell's Objectives Achieved?

Objective 1: To develop a filing system using Formfile’s colour-coded alpha-numeric system
Within 2.5 weeks Mancell's old filing system was converted to the Formfile colour-coded lateral filing system and 7,816 new Formfile files had been created and labeled to Mancell and MPA's specifications
Numeric computer-generated colour-coded identification method incorporated with alpha name label on front of file cover

Objective 2: Minimal interruption to business
The new system was implemented by Formfile’s on-site temps during a 5 week conversion process transferring all information to the new files without disruption to the workflow of Mancell staff

Objective 3: To implement an expandable alpha-numeric system
30% additional storage capacity
All files converted to large capacity gusset type file covers
Use of flexible file fasteners

Objective 4: To centralise file location/system
Relocated converted system to a centrally located 18 x 7 tiered bay within new premises.
Centralisation of filing system has streamlined office workflow as all staff members are now able to access one location
Customised shelving in work stations allow operation of system whilst absent from central filing system

Objective 5: To achieve space savings
The tiered bay provides 151.2 linear meters of storage space whilst using only 9.0 square meters of floor space
System provides over twice the previous capacity whilst achieving 25% floor savings.

Objective 6: To achieve time savings and improved efficiency
The colour coding system has eliminated previous problems of stray paper work and misfiles thus, resulting in improved efficiency and time savings in accessing, locating and managing files
Single user accessibility as a problem of old
Multi-user friendly

Objective 7: To achieve cost savings 
Improved efficiency in the retrieval and management of files has resulted in substantial time savings, and thus, significant cost savings
For Mancell to do the conversion themselves, staff and time resources would have been drained away enormously from the ordinary running of the business. Moreover, management and staff did not have prior experience in such an extensive file conversion process
Colour-coded filing system resulted in time savings of over 60% once staff were trained in the process. This translates into significant cost savings
Misfiling will be minimised, resulting in cost savings
Generic file covers, with required categories identified by means of plain colour labels, eliminates need to hold different coloured file stock
Flat opening, large capacity files have improved users' morale and saves time
70% of Mancell's existing 4-drawer filing cabinets were purchased and removed by Formfile
Payback to the practice for conversion costs is anticipated to be within 8 months due to cost reductions in staff time requirements

Objective 8: To provide an enhanced work environment
Enhanced work environment though improved appearance of office areas
And a Happier Staff!

Mancell Management: 'Formfile’s professional approach to the difficult task of merging and moving filing systems avoided significant interruption to our business.' (James Norman, Mancell partner.) Mancell End-User: 'From filing in previous companies, the Formfile method is more accurate. It is so easy to go in and find a file,' enthused Jessica Decis, Mancell's Administrative Assistant.

The Formfile Advantage as Identified by Mancell

High quality files
The alpha-numeric colour-coded system has made the Mancell filing system easy to follow and use for all staff
Formfile’s commitment to seeing through the task made it a less difficult exercise
High standard of professionalism and capability of Formfile Information Management Consultants
Results orientation