IKON Helps Capstead Clean Up Microfiche Files

Capstead, Inc. found they were drowning in wave after wave of microfiche from the mortgage loans they service. Capstead acquires large portfolios of loans and serves large volumes of mortgage requests. With each portfolio acquisition comes millions of records stored on microfiche that must be digitized and written to FileNET-compatible optical disks.

"We shopped around and looked at other conversion service companies," says Capstead's Mary Jo Babcock. "We chose IKON Business Imaging based on their experience and the information provided by the IKON Account Manager. She was forthcoming with information on similar fiche projects that IKON has performed, and she was very knowledgeable about different ways that our project could be approached. That flexibility helped us in our planning and decision making."

IKON began phase one of the Capstead conversion project in late 1995. The most challenging issue was meeting the objective of delivering consistent results in spite of the variances in microfiche quality contained across an immense population. With top-of-the-line scanners running three shifts a day, six days a week, IKON's expertise and stringent quality control produced excellent results. In addition to the operations crew for each shift, including quality control personnel and supervisors, IKON engineers and technicians are on call at all times to provide technical support. According to Dan Slaven, IKON's Director of Internal Operations, almost one million images were being converted per month at IKON's Northern California Conversion Operations Center. Initially, only 2.6 million images were expected to be converted during phase one; it turned out to be closer to five million!

"We ship boxes of microfiche as IKON is ready for them," explains Babcock. "IKON returns the microfiche along with filled FileNET-compatible optical disks."

Since the first conversion began, Capstead has awarded IKON contracts for additional acquisitions. With phase six just ending, the total frames converted is close to 26 million! To meet this, IKON has boosted throughput up to 2.5 million images monthly.

"I'm generally more pessimistic than optimistic when setting up a process with any vendor," says Babcock. "But with IKON, we felt good about their process. They ran tests and ensured that everyone signed off on a Conversion Services Plan, which defined everything that will take place throughout the production conversion process."

Babcock is especially pleased that a Capstead project manager helped compose the plan for Capstead. "Input from both sides helped eliminate surprises and let us understand what was going on, so we could participate," she says. "Once IKON began, they were very responsive to any concerns we raised, which played a big part in our assigning additional business to them."