Tag Archives: Capture

Capture – Scanning and Data Capture

HP provide an export connector (release script) for Kofax Capture to enable you to export scanned documents into HPE Content Manager (formerly HP Records Manager / Trim Context).

This has been around for a while and is used in most HPE Implementations in it’s most basic form.

You can find the reference information here.

Sometimes it’s good to look a better ways of doing things.

This article assumes that you are comfortable with the basic operation of the export connector but are looking at ways to improve, basically getting a more joined up capture system.

We are going to look at;

  • The Basic Experience
  • A Better Experience (For a lookup scenario)
  • Implementing that experience
    • Configuring the Export Connector
    • Writing a Lookup Function
    • Calling the Lookup Function
    • Fine Tuning

Ok so here goes.

Basic Experience

A lot of times the export connector is used in manual mode.

Every time a document is indexed the user sees the export connector (The panel underneath Trim Control Panel), clicks “Create Record”.  They then get the Record Creation screen which they fill in using the mouse.  If the names of your Kofax field and Trim fields align then they are defaulted (See Trim_Title in this example).

Better Experience

So a better experience is not to see the Export Connector at all.  If the record can be created using just Kofax then manual indexing will be quicker and if you are using ICR / OCR / Recognition it can be potentially automated.

So we want something like below.  We don’t really want to see that ugly record creation screen.

User just keys in the unique reference and the rest of the data should be pulled in from Records Manager, they can eyeball the image to make sure it matches, then the record should be automatically created.

Implementing

Ok so we know what we want but how to do.

Configuring the Export Connector

So to ensure that the export connector is working but not visible we set it to automatically invoke.

 

Writing a Lookup Function

So when the user keys in a unique reference we want to lookup information from Records Manager.  So where is this going to come from?  Well normally each record you scan is going into a folder and that folder will often carry all the meta data we need to visually check an image.

So our lookup is going to be to Records Manager which means a lookup function using the SDK.

This we can do using the .NET scripting built into Kofax.

What the script does is;

  • Connects to Trim
  • Finds the folder that matches our unique reference
  • Copies the meta from Trim back to Kofax so that the indexing user can see it
  • Ensures that when release the scanned document will be put in the correct folder (by setting the special Kofax field TRIM_Container
  • Ensures that the title is correct on the scanned document by setting the special Kofax field TRIM_Title

Calling the Lookup Function

The lookup function can be called as the post processing event on your unique lookup field.

Fine Tuning

Ok so you get the gist of one way of getting a better, more joined up capture experience for Kofax to Records Manager.

To get this ready for production you will also have to consider;

  • Kofax users moving backwards and forwards through batches and potentially changing values.
  • Setting a default destination container (This stops the manual record creation screen from randomly appearing in older export connector versions).

In Summary

The out of the box Kofax to Records Manager integration provides a good starting point.

With judicious use of scripting and configuration, however, you can make the two products really tightly integrated.

This can really reduce the time taken to scan documents especially with higher volume capture scenarios.

 

 

 

 

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A taster of what is coming in 2017 for SharePoint

The short version?  More things, prettier things, better things and a growing trend for Microsoft providing apps to solve the business problems people used to develop in SharePoint (StaffHub, Teams et al)

The longer version?  Now what gets you excited might depend on what you are interested in or using SharePoint for, hopefully our heading below will draw you to the most relevant area.

Enjoy!

Pretty Things

Publishing Pages

So 2016 gave us the modern team site (O365).  In 2017 the same is coming for publishing.  You will be able to easily created beautiful responsive publishing sites.

These pages will use out of the box and custom web parts developed using the new SharePoint Framework.

Custom Themes

Office 365 custom themes will be updated to include more themes overall, the ability for a user to upload their own theme and an option to use Bing images as your theme.

Document Management & Compliance

Copy and move to SharePoint

Copy and move files between OneDrive and SharePoint in web experiences. In CY17, Microsoft add the ability to move an copy files between a greater range of locations.

Mobile Scanning for OneDrive for Business

Using the OneDrive mobile app seamlessly take a photo, convert it to a PDF, and store it in OneDrive for Business. This will come first to Android followed by iOS and Windows Phone.

Office 365 Groups preservation and deletion policy

Create and manage preservation and deletion policies that affect Office 365 Group mail and files in one step using the Security and Compliance Center

Scanning – Office Lens iOS feature updates

New capabilities with Office Lens for iOS.  Multi scanning; scan multiple images in a row and save/send as a series.  Rotate scanned images3D touch feature to change modes.

OneDrive for Business SharePoint Online Document Library Sync

The ability to sync SharePoint document libraries, including Office 365 groups, added to the Next Generation Sync Client (NGSC). NGSC will also sync OneDrive for Business Shared Folders.

Apps

 

Microsoft StaffHub

Ok so not strickly speaking SharePoint but interesting because it provides the sort of solution that many people have tried to create before in SharePoint.

Microsoft StaffHub is a new app coming to Office 365 that connects Deskless Workers to the information they need to do their job for the day. StaffHub is currently in preview – find more information at http://staffhub.ms.

Migration

FastTrack | Dropbox to OneDrive for Business Migration

FastTrack Center will offer file migration services from Dropbox to OneDrive for Business as a new benefit provided by the FastTrack Center. This migration service will be available to customers with 150+ seats of eligible Office 365 plans.

Propeller Heads

 

SharePoint Online – Webhooks on SharePoint Document Libraries

Unlock the Webhooks development scenario through the Microsoft Graph. These WebHooks set of APIs allow developers to get notified with changes from SharePoint lists and document libraries in a performant and reliable way.

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This article covers how to import documents to SharePoint.  Creating a folder structure, meta data, importing files with content types and why it is important to do this with some consideration.

yourstuff

Scenario

We are going to assume that you have your documents on a file share / disk and that you have gathered your meta data in Excel, though your meta could quite easily be in a SQL or an Access database.  We will further assume that the documents being uploaded are Staff Employment Records

Import Tool

We will use the free version of Import for SharePoint toolset to import the files.

When you download the import tool you will have some Excel files, import configuration files, and screenshots of the content types which match this scenario.  Using these will make the next steps much easier.

The import tool has a lot of functionality which is covered in the documentation

Bulk Folder Creation

We need a folder for each employee in our scenario.

We assume that you have created a document library, attached a custom “Staff Folder” content type and to that some site columns.

Using the import tool we can create the folders from our spreadsheet.  The sheet is shown below.

excelfoldersource

From this the import tool will create a folder structure in your SharePoint library. Import meta data such as employee number is attached to each folder.

createdfolders

File Import

Now we can import our files into SharePoint.

We assume that you have created a document library, attached custom “Staff Document” and “Staff Disciplinary” content types and to those some site columns.

We can use the Excel spreadsheet as the import source.

excelfilesource

Once the import has processed this the files will have been imported into the correct locations and with the correct meta data set against each one.

uploadedfiles

Why did we do this?

Ok so now we have a good structure to support common requirements.

Retention

How so let us assume that HR want to delete Staff folders 20 years after staff have left the business.  We can add this retention policy onto the staff folder content type and for employees who have already left we have the date already set (See Bulk Folder Creation) .

retention

Ok, so usually it’s a bit more involved that this but you get the point.

Search

Adding meta-data gives us a better chance of an item showing up in search results and in the instance of managed meta data will give us access to refiners on the search results page.

5000 Item Per Folder Limit

Ok so we know it’s not a good idea to have more than 5000 items in a folder.  But doing our import as set out in this article you should be able to design a great structure that works inside this boundary even it your original folder structure did not.

So is this a packaged solution for Staff Records?

Well the reality is that the treatment of employment records will vary for each jurisdiction, can often complicated by different treatment for pension records,  and the SharePoint implementation will change dependent upon whether you have a HR system and how that works.

That said it’s a great demo scenario and hopefully demonstrated some techniques will can be applied in all areas of your work.

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If you are storing digital / scanned images in SharePoint you are most likely storing them as Adobe PDFs.

PDF is a great format to use because it views nicely and it also can accommodate full text searching of text in the image (more on that another time).

If you are now looking to implement records management for those documents this infers a requirement to keep the images for a long time.

This is where PDF/A comes in.  It is a reduced feature set of PDF which is guaranteed to be viewable in years to come whereas perhaps a more fully featured PDF document might not be in a couple of decades time.

pdf-a1

If you are scanning your documents into SharePoint the scanning software should be able to generate PDF/A compliant images for you though there might be an additional cost for this.

If you are migrating scanned images into SharePoint then it is worthwhile ensuring that these are generated as PDF/A compliant.

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