Document Management for Non-Profits
Founded in 1978, Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee works to feed hungry people and solve hunger issues in Middle and West Tennessee. With the help of grocers, food suppliers, and farmers who donate near expiration, over-produced, less than perfect, or outright donated food products, Second Harvest has had a major impact on their community. They maintain three warehousing and processing facilities in Nashville, Smyrna, and Camden, Tennessee, where employees and volunteers work hand-in-hand to sort and deliver food to churches and community centers, that distribute to the hungry.
After decades of helping others, Second Harvest was suddenly the one seeking help. They were dependent on a large closet and filing system to maintain their documents and as the paperwork added up, so did the amount of time and energy used to locate specific documents. They were in search for a more accurate way to manage records, specifically they needed the ability to quickly sort, search, manage, and route documents to the appropriate channels for approval. Square 9’s award-winning GlobalSearch enterprise content management software was just the solution they needed to meet all their demands.
GlobalSearch has changed the process for approving invoices at Second Harvest. Invoices are now stored securely, managed accurately, and quickly routed for approval. With GlobalSearch, employees have the ability to prioritize invoices based on importance and expedite any documents that need to be moved through the approval process quickly, reducing turnaround time and avoiding late fees. In the Information Systems department alone, they have saved thousands of dollars with GlobalSearch, as they now have insight into overcharges on basic services and inactive accounts, allowing them to be more thoughtful when approving invoices and making decisions on new purchases.
Second Harvest has seen an improvement in customer service as well, and now have a closer relationship with vendors thanks to GlobalSearch. They are able to manage vendor accounts appropriately, and verify that purchases of products and services are maintained and managed efficiently, saving them tens of thousands of dollars. Administrative tasks have been removed from employees, so they can focus on their core responsibilities, resulting in increased productivity.
The time spent locating documents has reduced by 30% and has removed the need for two bodies in their Accounting department alone. With current and historical records easily accessible, Second Harvest is able to fully audit invoices in a timely manner, saving them penalty costs. Now that their documents are being stored electronically, there is over a 30% reduction in the amount of paperwork being managed, saving them storage space and money!
Square 9 was able to provide the customer confidence and competitive advantage Second Harvest needed to fulfill their commitment to continually work to improve the community and keep up with the current pace of technology. Second Harvest has been so pleased with how easy GlobalSearch is to manage and how intuitive and simple the user interface is for non-admin users. The non-profit plans on expanding their use of Square 9’s solutions to additional departments, even adding GlobalForms web forms management and optical character recognition (OCR) for optimal efficiency.
Second Harvest is part of The Feeding America network, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization, working to connect people with food and end hunger. Learn more about Second Harvest Food Bank and their mission by visiting www.secondharvestmidtn.org.
David Tinsley, Information Systems Manager
Shannon Emley, Controller, Second Harvest Food Bank
Q. What challenges influenced you to look for a Document Management solution?
Second Harvest: We needed a more agile and accurate way to manage our financial records, and prior to utilizing GlobalSearch, we were dependent on a large closet and filing system. It was time consuming, complicated, and difficult to manage. In a world full of technology, we knew we needed to move to an electronic document management platform. Our first goal was to improve our Accounts Payable department and streamline data entry and payment processes.
Q. How have your processes changed since implementing Square 9’s solutions?
Second Harvest: The entire process for approving invoices has changed, and no longer requires the same level of sorting through invoices. GlobalSearch has made it possible to approve documents from remote locations and removed the need for the Accounting department to manage and store all historical invoices, reducing the need for two full time positions and saving space. The easy accessibility of documents has given managers a great deal of time back on a weekly basis and allows them to focus on their core responsibilities. Managing vendor accounts in the past would have been a full-time job, but the availability of current and historical billing has made these sorts of audits very quick and accessible, saving us thousands of dollars.
Q. How is your company leveraging GlobalSearch and which departments are using it daily? How is the solution being used?
Second Harvest: GlobalSearch is being used across every department to electronically monitor purchases. Customized workflows have been put in place that route incoming invoices through the appropriate approval channels. GlobalSearch is touched by every manager, director, and executive level employee on a daily basis to verify that purchases of products and services are maintained and managed in the best way possible. Additionally, users frequently use GlobalSearch to reference past invoices to aid in decision-making.
Q. Would you recommend Square 9’s solutions and why?
Second Harvest: I would recommend Square 9 solutions, especially to any company that is currently managing their documents in paper form. Although there is a small learning curve in setting up document workflows, when using this form of document movement, the benefits are incredible. It’s easy to manage and the user interface is extremely simple to understand. Additionally, it seems the Square 9 team is continually working to improve their products to keep up with the current pace of technological change – this gives us as the customer confidence that we have access to competitive solutions.