Leading national real estate group SEKYRA Group a.s. comprises of companies achieving annual investment of up to CZK 5 billion. SEKYRA Group a.s. as a developer focuses in particular on commercial and residential projects. At the same time, it acts as the real estate investor establishing its own real estate portfolio through long-term investments. The company also provides professional services in the field of real estate, facility management, and project management. Last but not least, the company manages real estate funds and cooperates with the public sector. SEKYRA Group a.s. also expands its activities in Slovak and Russian real estate markets.
SEKYRA Group formerly used economic system K6 together with standard office package Microsoft Office. Archive was available in paper form only, distributed over multiple locations and the number of files considerably increased every year. Another issue was the difficult search for the documents. Therefore, SEKYRA Group a.s. decided to implement an archiving and data retrieval project, and to replace their current information system with a new one.
- To ensure archiving of all printed documents in electronic form
- To maintain exact image of every printed document
- To archive all electronic documents
- To ensure easy and fast access to the documents through the Document Management System implementation
- Traceability of electronic documents for communication with customers and for mandatory purposes
- Establishment of a simple workflow for documents circulation and approval purposes
- Better availability of archived documents
- Faster document retrieval
- Simplification and higher work efficiency
- Document sharing feature allows multiple persons to work on one document
- Transparent approval processes with history
First of all, it was necessary to consider all requirements of SEKYRA Group with respect to the condition of its IT infrastructure. The next step was to establish a new document management system ( “DMS”), which would allow efficient processing of both paper and electronic documents and which would enable further extension of its functions with respect to the commercial and development needs of SEKYRA Group. The solution has been based on the worldwide standards of Microsoft and Open Text – the world’s leading producer and supplier of DMS and ECM (Enterprise Content Management) tools for documents and content management. This would also ensure investment appreciation and long-term support and stability of the solution.
The entire solution was based on Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 and Livelink Enterprise Archive Server (hereinafter referred to only as the Livelink EAS), which also comprises Livelink Enterprise Scan.
Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 is a scalable portal server to interconnect persons, teams, and knowledge within the framework of the enterprise processes. Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 provides a secured enterprise solution.
Livelink EAS is the basic archiving platform for the Enterprise Content Management solution and it provides the customers with a number of interconnecting elements (for example with Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003). Such interconnecting elements enable company documentation management in various applications and their linking to the enterprise processes.
Livelink Enterprise Scan is a software tool which is normally bundled with the Livelink Enterprise Archive Server – archive platform for processing and storage of large volumes of scanned and electronic data. Livelink Enterprise Scan is a robust, continually developing, highly stable platform. Livelink Enterprise Scan is used by numerous customers worldwide who process millions of documents in a monthly or yearly horizon.
The implemented solution enables SEKYRA Group to administer, control, and manage the documents, track versions, search for and retrieve archived data and documents, or to create workgroups. Paper archive was digitized, and made accessible over the DMS, which was established under Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003.
Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 is simple to administer and maintain. Rights control features provide access protection. The system uses technologies similar to the internet to provide shared, protected, and secured access to documents across the enterprise.
Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 was implemented for 10 users during the pilot phase assuming subsequent development and integration into the new Microsoft infrastructure including the planned implementation of Microsoft Navision information system.
Figure: Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 Structure Solution
The solution provides all users with user friendly environment including highly comfortable DMS tools. Access to documents or their creation, are possible by two means:
The first possibility is to digitize the document by scanning. A paper document is processed at the scanning workplace where it is converted into electronic form. The first page of the document is provided with a barcode which gives necessary identification attribute to the document for later processing, classification, and subsequent retrieval. Once the document is converted into electronic form, the archive server (Livelink EAS) stores relevant data into the archive and its accessibility from the Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 environment based on the defined criteria. Documents from the archive server are subsequently transferred to Jukebox (archive library with optical or magneto-optical media) where the data is securely archived and provided with overwriting protection.
The second method consists in document creation by the user on his/her PC, for example in Microsoft Word or in Microsoft Visio (scheme drawing tool) and its subsequent archiving from the Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 portal environment (no barcode is required to obtain the attribute). Subsequent steps are identical to the first variant.
Multiple versions can be created when working with the documents. It is possible to create new versions of the archived document, which can be archived separately. It is also possible to utilize the check in and check-out functions – in such a case, the particular document is locked while being worked on.
A general informative homepage is displayed as the first page of the portal. The next level comprises web pages of lower levels, for example the website of the legal department. Administration of the entire portal is based on the assigned user rights defined in the Active directory.
The next page of the portal, which is entirely intended for the legal department, contains specific up-to-date information about the department, list of employees, tasks, specimen documents and agreements, information about statutory representation of the companies, and mainly the list of companies administered by the legal department.
Figure: Web structure of the Legal Department
Individual documents are stored on pages of the companies within the responsibility of the legal department. The pages comprise documents in digital form (digital data), as well as previously scanned documents that have been automatically classified (according to the barcode) and assigned to the relevant page of the company under Digitized folder. Division into partial folders takes place in Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 by an authorized user.
The entire Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 solution has been implemented by an implementation team consisting of the project manager, technical consultant, application consultant, team of three developers in .NET environment, Windows 2003 system administrator, and an SQL specialist.
All partial activities were performed in the following time sequence:
- Livelink Enterprise Archive Server – installation
- Livelink Enterprise Scan – installation
- Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 – connector between the Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 and the Livelink EAS (Livelink Enterprise Archive Server) was installed, set-up, and implemented during the Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 installation together with the customization of libraries, Czech characters optimization, and search tuning within the MS SharePoint Portal Server 2003
- Software development works aimed at provision of required functionalities of individual modules within Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 (in .NET environment)
Products and Technologies
- Microsoft products
- Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003
- Windows SharePoint Services
- Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition (CZ)
- Microsoft SQL Server Standard Edition SP3a
Products of the Supplier and Third Party Product
- Livelink for Microsoft SharePoint
- Livelink Enterprise Archive Server
- Livelink Enterprise Scan
- Jukebox PLASMON D120
- Scanner Bell + Howell 730 DC