Headquartered in Princeton, New Jersey, International School Services (ISS) has spent over 55 years creating a global, first-class educational system by launching over 90 schools in more than 40 countries on six continents. With regional offices in the Caribbean, Middle East, and Asia Pacific, ISS supplies institutions worldwide with the materials and support they need to provide the very best in education.
Founded as a non-profit organization, ISS delivers assistance in staff recruitment, consulting support, school supplies, professional development and other services to position each school and every student for success. The mission of ISS is to advance the quality of education for children in international schools by providing innovative services and solutions for learning communities and corporations throughout the world.
“There are quite a few departments here and their daily operations vary from processing teaching candidates for overseas school placement to managing international schools,” said Allyson Wilcox, ISS Educational Account Representative. “We process tens of thousands of Purchase Orders from international schools worldwide. Each Purchase Order generates an Invoice which we reconcile against the Packing List before sending the documents to Accounting for payment processing. We then coordinate large bulk order shipments to these overseas schools, saving them time and money by providing discounts and consolidating orders.”
The document heavy three-way match process caused ISS to face challenges in efficiency, as the non-profit searched for a solution to streamline productivity while drastically reducing paper usage. ISS found an answer in Square 9’s cost-effective GlobalSearch Document Management solution, which was quickly implemented to restructure and automate their business processes.
The non-profit is not only using GlobalSearch in their Purchasing Department, but their Accounting administrators utilize the solution for many procedures including home office check runs, journal entries, and home office Invoices. The Human Resources Department has also begun applying the user-friendly software to better manage their database of over 1550 registered staff candidates.
“From a Purchasing Department standpoint, our previous Invoice reconciliation process was simply inefficient, time-consuming, and a huge waste of paper,” Wilcox continued. “We would obtain at least ten paper copies of an Invoice from vendors. We would then separate the batch so that two copies went to the Accounting Department, two copies went in our paper file for reference, and the remaining were kept for coordinating large shipments.”
ISS quickly generated enough paper storage to fill a large warehouse, which lead to inadequacies in workflow. But after adopting GlobalSearch, within the first six months ISS eliminated 500,000 sheets of paper and has greatly improved data circulation.
“As a very rough estimate, if we received 15,000 orders last year, and each order contained a one-page Invoice, that’s 150,000 sheets of paper we are no longer handling,” Wilcox clarified. “However, most vendor Invoices are more than one page; some can be up to a hundred or more pages, so in theory we could be saving up to a million pieces of paper per year with GlobalSearch.”
For ten years, ISS stored documents into their warehouse to comply with record retention policies. Now with GlobalSearch, the organization no longer has a need for offsite storage, saving them rent expenses and time spent on retrieval while adhering to compliance regulations. Digitizing their documents created an increase in productivity, a streamlined workflow, and a realistic measurability on project status. What previously took 15 minutes, today a document is found within a matter of seconds.
The staff at ISS chose GlobalSearch Document Management for its series of highly advanced tools, which simplify the completion of critical tasks. “The KeyFree Indexing feature was very attractive to us, as we have a lot of different, specific information to index,” said Wilcox. “Manually typing all of it would simply be too time-consuming for us. Also, search capabilities were important to us because of our need to go back and retrieve documents for inspection and review after initial processes.”
In association with over 1,000 suppliers and equally as many vendors around the world, ISS has enhanced productivity including the consolidation and shipment of educational materials and goods. “With GlobalSearch, we hold one hard copy of an Invoice, which turns into one digital file that serves the same purpose as all ten copies with our previous procedure,” Wilcox continued. “It has definitely streamlined our procedures by making our relevant documents accessible in one location.”
GlobalSearch has been the solution for ISS to better develop the planning, organization, and groundwork to create first-class international schools. They have been so satisfied with the product that ISS envisions expanding their use of GlobalSearch throughout all departments. “I would recommend GlobalSearch,” Wilcox explained. “The system is user-friendly and we were able to self-train our staff on how the features work, how to implement the system to fit our needs, etc. It improves our operations, saves us time and money, is easy to use, and makes documents easily searchable, filterable, and retrievable.”