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RECORDS-MANAGEMENT-UK  May 2006

RECORDS-MANAGEMENT-UK May 2006

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Subject:

Re: Scanning...

From:

Steve Norris <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Steve Norris <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 23 May 2006 11:13:29 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (114 lines)

Hi Heidi,

File format is an issue, you should choose an 'open' standard. - I would
recommend using the TIF format. Another possibility is PDF (Acrobat) format,
but as Adobe keep coming out with new versions you can't ensure backwards
compatibility.
You also need to look at the compression you use within a format. CCITT
Group 3 or 4 is typically the best for black and white documents in TIF
files. For greyscale you could use LZW compression, and for colour JPEG
compression (although there are different JPEG standards).
Note that Group3/4 or LZW are lossless compression but JPEG is a 'lossy'
compression.

On file sizes, assuming black and white scanning, I usually calculate at 35k
bytes per A4 side (or up to 30,000 A4 sides per gigabyte), but the safest
way is to scan a sample of your documents and check their sizes. IT
departments tend to overemphasise file storage issues; disk drives are cheap
nowadays (certainly cheaper than office space).

On Legal Admissibility you need to follow BSI BIP0008 (if you don't your
electronic records may not be considered trustworthy and you would therefore
need to retain the originals).

You mention "where to scan to (and what to call it!)" suggesting you are
thinking of storing scanned images in Windows folders.  I wouldn't recommend
this, you need to be using Records Management or Document Management
software. You will need to decide how to index the documents (not only a
name, but other 'metadata' such as a date, document type, reference numbers,
etc).

I usually recommend scanning live documents in-house; don't forget the
'complicated' part of scanning is not pushing paper through a scanner but in
correctly indexing it (which scanning bureaux will do but probably don't
have the same level of knowledge that you have). Indexing costs are
typically higher than scanning costs.

Scanning your backlog depends upon your circumstances. If you regularly need
access to old documents that could justify scanning them, but if you rarely
use them it may be better either not to scan at all, or scan them only when
someone requests them.  Some Records Management software is capable of
managing both paper documents and electronic (including scanned) documents.
If the volume of back-scanning is large it may be more practical to use a
bureau.


Steve Norris
Alliance Document Solutions
http://www.alliancegroup.co.uk


-----Original Message-----
From: The UK Records Management mailing list
[mailto:[log in to unmask]]On Behalf Of Mcintosh,
Heidi (CS, Cultural Services)
Sent: 23 May 2006 09:16
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Scanning...


Hello

My colleagues across the County Council are increasingly asking about
scanning, as they see it as the solution to lack of space (i.e. scan
everything and get rid of the paper). Our IT department are worried about
this from a file size/format point of view, but we are also worried from an
auditability/legal admissability/records management point of view. I am
therefore trying to draw up a Scanning Standard and Toolkit, to give our
recommendations on how to scan, where to scan to (and what to call it!),
what processes to use, whether to outsource or do it in-house, whether to
back-scan etc. I am really writing to see if anybody else has any similar
document they are willing to share, or has any guidance that they provide.

I am happy to consolidate any responses for the list and I look forward to
your replies. Thank you.

Heidi
******************
Heidi McIntosh
Electronic Records Manager
Worcestershire Record Office
Modern Records Unit
County Hall
Spetchley Road
Worcester
WR5 2NP
Tel: 01905 728762
Fax: 01905 766698
[log in to unmask]
http://www.worcestershire.gov.uk/records

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