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Welcome to Identifi 5.0

March 10, 2016

identifi_logo_tagline_vertical_colorThe technology business past, present and future is pretty much a wild ride. Every day we strive to reinvent ourselves. Founded in 1988, Integra Business Systems, Inc., d.b.a. Identifi, celebrates 28 years in business this month. To put things into perspective, in 1988 gas was .91 per gallon.

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We get it. Through all the changes and advances in technology, you are the secret sauce of Identifi’s success.

History is such a great teacher, and it has taught us at Identifi, you are the reason we are still here. The secret sauce to being successful is you, our customers, partners, vendors and employees, alike.

Through all the transitions in products and technology, you’ve needed great products and services. We’ve provided it.

To be successful in the technology business, we have to continue to invest heavily in, what we like to call, “intellectual property, a.k.a., Identifi employees.

Our mission is to connect people with technology. We must embrace the constant evolution in technology and in our lives, to make our employees, our partners and our customer’s lives simpler, more productive, and more fulfilling.

We’ve always prided ourselves in providing great products and service. Now we need to take it to the next level, to connect you with the people you interact with every day.

In an increasingly commoditized environment, the risks of your customers being bombarded with more competitive choices will increase. Creating loyalty through innovation (partnerships) will become more important. Identifi is and has been successful in forming partnerships which will be critical to enable connected anything and everything.

Many businesses are saddled with legacy document imaging systems a.k.a., Enterprise Content Management (ECM) technology. Sooner or later companies with legacy ECM systems will have to bite the bullet. We are well positioned to convert and upgrade legacy ECM products to the latest web-based technology to address Mobile and Cloud technology.

We know we have to make our technology simple. How do we do that? We have to keep pace with Mobile and the Cloud technology. We do that by using the latest browser based development technology, including HTML5, and AngularJS. We build products that employ Responsive Design, that makes our software easy to use on PCs, tablets and mobile devices.responsive design

Identifi can help make your life a little easier. To do that we need to provide technology to connect you and your customers on any device, in all areas of your business, so you can be more productive, to make life simpler for you and your customers.

Our vision is to build products that make your life simpler. We believe we can improve the way you do business and the way your customers connect. We do that by focusing on helping people work together and incorporate the latest technology to make that possible. We are busy inventing the future of collaboration software. Join us. We want to welcome you to Identifi 5.0.

 

Happy Holidays from INTEGRA!

December 8, 2015

May the joy of the Holiday Season carry over into the New Year!

Integra Client Conference Agenda below:

Integra Client Conference Agenda below:

 

2016-conference-logo.HIGH_QUALITY

Monday, Feb 22nd

 6:00 – 11:00 Fishing Charter – Clearwater Beach Marina

Jim Bryant, Integra’s lead Implementation Coordinator will LEAD you out into the Florida Gulf to catch the finest of Spanish Mackerel, King Fish and Grouper on this off shore fishing expedition!

                                 10:00 – 1:00        Winter the Dolphin Tour – Clearwater Aquarium

This is not your typical aquarium!  The Clearwater Aquarium is a marine life rescue center and home of Winter the dolphin, star and inspiration of the hit movie Dolphin Tale, which was filmed on location.  Winter is not the only animal others include, sea turtles, otters, sharks & pelicans.  Come be inspired and educated by their ongoing work of rescue, rehabilitation and release. Includes a boat ride.  Meet Abby Ross our VP of Sales in the lobby.

                                   1:00 – 4:00       Beach Tennis/Volleyball – Sheraton Sand Key Resort

Come join Chris Oppenheimer, AVP of Customer Support out on the beach volleyball courts at the Sheraton Sand Key Resort for some fun!  Combine, volleyball & tennis and you get the exciting sport of Beach Tennis.  You don’t need to be a professional to play and you are always welcome to just come out and watch by the tiki bar.

                                 6:00 – 8:00         Welcome Reception – Poolside/Sheraton Sand Key Resort

Welcome!  Join the Integra staff, Partners and other Integra customers for dinner and drinks poolside at the Sheraton Sand Key Resort.  Network with your peers and enjoy the live Caribbean music.  Drink, Dance and enjoy the beautiful sunset on Clearwater Beach!

Tuesday, Feb 23rd        

                              8:00 – 4:00   Registration – Outside of Palm/Bay Rooms

                              8:00 – 8:45   Breakfast – Island Room II

Get ready to learn! Join the Vendors and Integra employees and your peers for breakfast.  Start out your morning well while preparing for an exciting day of education.

                              8:45 – 9:30   State the Union Address – Palm/Bay Rooms

President and CEO of Integra, Alan Wiessner will open the day’s events with a recap of where Integra has been and where we are going.  Get ready for a big reveal!

                              9:30 – 10:45 Keynote Speaker – Palm/Bay Rooms

Bob Hirschfeld a “Cybersatirist” takes a satirical look at business and technology and the world around us.  Start the morning out laughing with Bob who was a contributing writer for Jay Leno from the Tonight Show.

                             10:45 – 11:15 Break

Integra Business Systems, Inc. Turns Twenty-Seven!

March 7, 2015
1988

1988

Integra celebrates twenty seven (27) years in business Saturday. March 7th, 2015.  It truly seems like a long time ago.

Then again, I wish I were 27 years old.  At age 27, I was a District Manager for NCR Corp., based in Milwaukee, WI.  My wife Terri and I had just moved into our first home.

My hair was just tinged in gray.  Today it’s almost as white as the snow in Boston!  I weighed 175 lbs.  Now I weigh, well let’s forget about the reminiscing!

Today, Integra has a star studded cast of 41 professionals.  Almost daily, I receive accolades from our customers about our all-stars support, their delivery and the quality of our products. With such an all-star cast, Integra is headed into 2015 strong, and with a full head of steam. Our paperless suite of Enterprise Content Management (ECM) products are cloud ready and second to none.  

In 2015 new, exciting and powerful products that will help shape your business, are on the way.  I’m more energized and optimistic than ever about the future of Integra, our customers and our own all-stars!

Integra Client Conference & Training Seminar 2016

February 20, 2015

Back by popular demand…

*Mark Your February 2016 Calendars!*

Integra Client Conference & Training Seminar 2016

February 22nd -24th

Sheraton Sand Key Resort

(Integra Group Rate:  $222 a  night)

Costs:

Full Conference: $249 per Institution

Events Only (Perfect For Guest): $99

 More to follow as the dates approach…

Peoples Credit Union Building a Paperless Future

January 19, 2015

Peoples CUThe People’s Credit Union is a community credit union that has served the people of Rhode Island since 1922. Located in Rhode Island, Peoples has six branch locations.  Each branch uses iDentifi.eSign to capture electronic signatures for transactions, new accounts and account maintenance.  The Credit Union uses iDentifi.eReceipt for electronic transaction processing, iDentifi.Trak for monitoring required documents and iDentifi workflows for efficient and streamlined verification and quality control.

The Credit Union uses Pax units for eSign processing on the teller line and Topaz units for new account processing.  Currently, electronic signatures are used for all over-the-counter teller transactions as well as all deposit related documents, such as, new consumer and business account signature cards, safe deposit box agreements, account maintenance forms, IRA administration documents, ATM/Debit Card agreements and so much more.

The eSign functionality has brought many benefits to the Credit Union including increased operational efficiency, stronger controls and security, enhanced member service and a decrease in our operational tasks and costs.

Tellers are able to process transactions faster, with minimal paper to clutter their teller stations.  Documents are automatically uploaded to the iDentifi web system reducing the possibility of getting misplaced while complementing our clean desk policy.

Teller and new account staff now have instant access to member and account documents and our research requests are now completed in just a few minutes whereas before, staff had to wait (sometimes days) while operations staff sifted through paper files that were locked in vaults and file cabinets.

In addition, now that we have streamlined operations and eliminated the need for filing paper documents, the Credit Union is able to take on more strategic projects without having to hire new staff to support these goals.   Bethany Cottrell, Core Systems Manager, People’s Credit Union

The eReceipt functionality enables the Credit Union to process member transactions quickly, securely and efficiently.  Electronic receipts are automatically stored to the iDentifi web system.  If a member needs a copy, tellers can quickly and easily pull and print copies of receipts.  Receipts processed through the drive-up include a barcode and are quickly and easily scanned into document storage as part of the tellers everyday process.  The eReceipt module is easily customizable which allowed the Credit Union to choose which transactions require an eReceipt and which do not.

The iDentifi system provided the Credit Union with customizable and easy to use security and retention tools.  Access has been limited to only those individuals that have a business need, including auditors who may need access to very specific documents for auditing purposes.  In addition, People’s has set very detailed retention schedules eliminating the need to manually track documents that need to be securely destroyed.

The People’s Credit Union also utilizes iDentifi workflows for both quality control purposes and approvals of any scanned loan documents and deposit related eSign documents.  Documents are automatically placed in the beginning stage of the work flow.  Operational staff are able to easily move documents throughout each step of the workflow process until all documents are completed and approved.  Users use the sticky note feature to notate any comments or approvals.

iDentifi.Trak is the newest module that the Credit Union has added to its processes.   iDentifi.Trak allows the Credit Union to monitor specific documents to ensure they have been loaded into the iDentifi system.  Our operations staff use the robust reporting that is included in the iDentifi.Trak system to monitor pending items and exceptions.  On a regular basis, the iDentifi system looks to see if any missing documents have been added to the system to automatically clear out any exceptions.

Over the next year or so, People’s Credit Union hopes to expand eSign to all loan related documents.  This will be the last accomplishment in our goal of converting to a paperless environment.

The iDentifi.Net ECM Suite from Integra Business Systems, Inc. provides document management solutions addressing today’s challenging needs for ROI, secure storage of documents and information; while aiding you with regulatory and compliance issues.

We’re Celebrating the Holiday Season with Santa!

December 19, 2014

We couldn’t do it without you! We’re celebrating the Holidays with Santa, as another successful year, 2014 comes to a close.  We are reminded once again, our greatest achievement is the relationships we have developed over the years with you, our customers, our partners, our employees and our friends, of which most are synonymous.  Thank you! 

Please enjoy a relaxing, peaceful and safe holiday season and don’t forget to celebrate like Santa!

Seasons Greetings from Integra Business Systems, Inc.

MFPs Go Paperless with iDentifi.net

July 31, 2014

Not just a paper pushing toner eating machine anymore. Make MFPs work for you to move towards a paperless environment.

 

Integra a Sponsor for the GTE Financial Charitable Foundation’s Scholarship Scramble

May 21, 2014
GTE Golf Kevin Lisa Chad and Chris

Kevin, Lisa, Chad, and Chris

To benefit the GTE Financial Scholarship Foundation: Making Higher Education a Reality, One Putt at a Time.

Last year’s inaugural Scholarship Scramble tournament allowed GTE’s Scholarship Foundation to award 24 scholarships to really deserving local students. This year our goal is to give 50 scholarships to local students who are dedicated to their education and community.

Chris Oppenheimer, AVP Support at Integra Business Systems observed, ” The entire event was tremendous!   The cocktail reception party included live music by a American Idol contestant who sang beautifully, wonderful food and a fantastic firework show.  They kicked off the Golf outing with the USF Marching Band and Majorettes.  Each hole had a festive theme and was sponsored by different companies/vendors.   They had St Patties Day hole including a Bag Piper,  Mexican Cinco De Mayo hole including an Ass (Burro), Pirate Ship with Pirates and Wenches, Summer Beach Spring Break hole with a pool, Oktoberfest Beer tasting, 4th of July with a marshmallow driving competition, a X-Mas Hole that you could win a free car.   The day was capped off with banquet and an awards program including an assortment of prizes.”

What the GTE Financial scholarship recipients are saying:

Kelly, a 2013 GTE scholarship recipient “I think it’s extremely important to give back to your community so that others may have the opportunity to benefit from your gift. Through this gift, others may have the opportunity to pay it forward.”  And Emily, another scholarship winner “This scholarship is like a blessing. I have a lot on my plate as a double major, and this money will allow me to take an additional volunteer position which means so much to me.”

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Team iDentifi Continues to Roll in the Battle to Beat MS in this Year’s bikeMS 2014

April 19, 2014

While the team only sported 13 riders this year, we kept with the tradition of our ongoing excellence in raising awareness for MS by raising nearly $20,000 in donations, an average of nearly $1,500 per rider.  We’re not done yet!  You can still choose a rider to donate to on the Team iDentifi bikeMS page.  http://main.nationalmssociety.org/goto/team_identifi_2014

What struck me most was the returning loyalty and generosity of our riders, family and friends.  Year after year they reach deep into their hearts and their pocket books to help Team iDentifi raise funds to beat MS and to participate in the annual bikeMS fundraising event.

Below the photo galery is our progress report for you.  Thank you for your continued support!

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Tem iDentifi Progress Report

Tem iDentifi Progress Report

 

Integra participates in Feed the Bay 2014

March 22, 2014
IBS Logo from the Implementation Group

IBS Logo from the Implementation Group

Integra Business Systems, Inc. Professional Services Group (PSG) teamed up with the Support Group (SG) to challenge a team made up of the Development Group (DG) and last but not least, a team made up of the Implementation Group (IG) to participate in a canned/boxed good sculpture challenge.

The challenge was created by Christie Russell, Manager of the Professional Services Group to help support an upcoming event by the Feed the Bay Charitable Foundation, of which she is actively involved.

The Feed the Bay 2014 Event  is coming on 3/23.   This event is used to stock up on food for many homeless and food pantry organizations around the Tampa Bay area.

The challenge to Integra employees to bring some canned goods and then each team prepared a sculpture with the canned goods received.   The sculptures were built in the offices of the various teams and are pictured here.

Sculptures needed to be completed by  1 PM on March 21st and were to be delivered to Feed the Bay on March 23rd.

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S3 Deploys iDentifi ECM Suite of Products for Document Imaging, eSignature and Document Tracking

February 20, 2014

Open Technology Solutions (OTS) is the CUSO for Bethpage Federal Credit Union, Bellco and SECU, which have over $10.5 billion in combined assets.

The three partner Credit Unions are supported by a centralized Operations Center called S3 – Shared Service Solutions, LLC.  Each Credit Union has their own iDentifi Server running on their network.

Scan stations are located at S3, to assist in making correspondence available in one business day.  Multi-function printers are also used to scan general mail (including loan payments, collections, insurance, etc.) totaling over thousands of documents per week across all three Credit Unions.  This has made the elimination of Mail/Courier service possible.

Bethpage and Bellco are running the iDentifi.WEB repository with hundreds of users employing electronic signature, e-receipt, scan stations and E-Report.  Bellco and SECU also run the iDentifi.Trak module to avoid audit exceptions.  Tracking includes automatic e-mail notifications and reports when documents are pending or in exception.  Exceptions are automatically cleared when documents are added into the iDentifi.WEB repository.  If documents are recurring; ticklers are automatically reset at the point of recurrence.

E-Receipt (for paperless receipts) works with signature pads, as well as with Ingencio and Pax units at the teller, which interface with the Verifast Solution from Fiserv/Open Solutions Inc.  This one unit can be used for swiping and signature.  The Credit Unions are using the dual logo feature of e-Receipt for shared branch transactions.

All three credit unions are using e-sign for loan documents and new account signature cards.  Documents are scanned with automatic indexing provided through barcodes that integrate with core by reading the core data file for indexing.

It is ideal to have one central repository for all your information.  The iDentifi.WEB repository imports the following automatically:

  • Velocity and Empower Loan Documents
  • XDI Akcelerant Collection Notices
  • IRA Documents

Information can be accessed through Fiserv/Open Solutions DNA Core, or directly through the KWYK (Key What You Know) search engine which is part of the .NET iDentifi.WEB repository.

E-Report is not just limited to the downloaded Fiserv/Open Solutions reports, but also includes auto indexing of Elan Reports, WITS (wire transfer reports from Pathfinder), FDR Reports, IS Reports, ERAS Reports, Fidelity Reports, Co-Op reports and abandoned property reports.  Conversions can be supported from the legacy systems; Synergy, DocStar, Spoolview and Aace.

May Your New Year Be Filled with Joy, Health and Success!

December 24, 2013

We wanted to share some scenes from our Christmas/Holiday festivities here at Integra.  Warmest wishes for the season, and sincere thanks for your loyalty throughout the years!

Integra 2013 Christmas and Holiday Party

Halloween Breakfast at Integra

October 31, 2013
tags:

Integra employees enjoyed some good laugh including breakfast and coffee with bagels.  We are currently voting on who has the best costume.  Check out this hilarious YouTube video!

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You can place your vote.

Integra Business Systems, Inc. Celebrates 25 Years In Business March 7th, 2013

March 7, 2013

IBS trade show booth center graphic copy

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The Mandate to Go Paperless

June 30, 2012

Posted under “Thought Leaders” on the cbanc website  cbancnetwork.com

According to IDC (International Data Corp) – between now and 2020…  there will be 44X the growth in information BUT… only 1.4X growth in IT professionals.  For example, according to MBA Online there are 294 billion emails sent every day.  To give you an idea of the impact it would take the US Postal Service two (2) years to process that many pieces of mail.  Every day 172 million people visit Facebook, 2 million Blog posts are written (guilty as charged), enough posts to fill Time Magazine for 770 million years!

So why are we waiting to manage and store all this information?  According to an AIIM, the leading trade association in a Enterprise Content Management (ECM) survey, “the problem is we don’t think we have a problem!” The number one answer to the survey is “management is still dragging their feet;” followed by “people still want to hold onto their paper.”  Finally, “people still think they need a wet signature (signature on paper)” …and so on.

Yet AIIM also asked the following question, “How much more productive do you think your organization would be…with ECM?”  The median answer is “at least 33% more productive.”  So where is Enterprise Content Management (ECM) headed?  We see the traditional ECM model moving from document centric to people centric, open and collaborative, community oriented and so on…  A focus on the customer, rather than on products, is a critical ingredient for financial institutions to maintain and grow their business with their customers. 

ECM is an effective approach to helping financial institutions manage the information, the content necessary to achieve a customer-centric focus.  As business and consumer customers become empowered by social media and pervasive communications, they are starting to realize they have choices for their financial services. These trends are reshaping the financial industry and are putting financial institutions into a more competitive atmosphere than before.

Technology innovations today and into the future have been turned up-side-down! It used to be business drove innovation, today people do.  So how do you manage the information tsunami so your customers don’t end up knowing more about your products and services than you do?  That is the imperative for going paperless and more.

We have moved from an era of the PC, to the internet and today the cloud.  Each subsequent move has happened more rapidly.  You can see how things were processed from the document, to the web page and today it’s an interaction.  Consider the best known companies.  Look how over time we have moved the cheese from IBM to Microsoft and now to Facebook.  Content has moved from microfiche to image, to document, to content to social business systems?  We see financial institutions moving from the PC to the web and mobile devices, but not nearly as quickly as their customers and the growth in the devices themselves.  What’s next?  Go paperless.

What are 2 or 3 greatest misperceptions associated with implementing doc imaging?

Centralized scanning (capture) is NOT the only way to control the document imaging capture and workflow.  Scanners become increasingly powerful and inexpensive.  Scanners for less than $1,000 include features such as duplex and color document capture.  Software as a Service (SaaS) and in-house web-server based ECM applications offer  click-once deployment, employ barcode recognition, forms recognition and e-signature technologies which allow for a more automated and accurate method of capture.  Centralized capture out!  Distributed capture in!

Your ECM implementation happens overnight.  False!  Technologies such as report archive and a basic backfile scanning application, like signature cards may be in place in weeks, but careful planning and best practices while employing ECM applications for all new account and loan products, HR, accounting, Accounts Payable and so on take time and teamwork.

You’re going to go “completely” paperless.  False!  There are going to be documents you have to keep, such as a mortgage and a deed.  Your lawyer must decide.

How long is a ‘typical’ timeline to get a doc imaging system up and running?

If the ECM vendor provides “templates” for the applications the customer wishes to implement and best practices guidelines during the pre-implementation stage and during implementation a “typical” document imaging implementation timeline will be 30-90 days.  If the customer is exceptionally well organized in terms of defining their applications and indexes it can be 30-45 days.  The customer must provide good feedback and be fully engaged.

Who is best suited to serve as the project owner for implementation: IT, the business line being imaged, or some other area?

The IT department or IT consultant needs to be involved as well as the business line managers of the department or organization being implemented but the ECM project owner should be a person that has project management skills.  They might not have all the answers but have the ability to get the answers and keep the project on track internally and be an advocate to promote the system throughout the organization.

Besides loan origination, what are 3 other areas that should be considered for doc imaging?

Deposits, Operations, Legal, HR, AP, Vendor Management, Facilities Management Wire transfer and more…

Are there any business lines or areas that are NOT good candidates for doc imaging? Why?

There are areas that will be more challenging than others.  If you are new to ECM, pick an area of the institution where there is a quick ROI like new account signature cards, new account documents, consumer loans, HR then make your way to more challenging are such as commercial mortgages.  The primary concern will always be the same best practices and teamwork.

What recommendations can be made to minimize staff keeping ‘ghost files’?

If you cannot access the content, image files, documents and reports easily and quickly from anywhere across the organization, you will most likely have people keeping ghost files.  This means stop the flow by capturing documents at their originating point within your organization and conquering the backfile as well.  A scanning service is a good way to get that done.  It is usually easy though for the bank themselves to go back and scan in all the old signature cards.  This is a good way to be successful right off the bat.  It has a good impact on the customer and the staff.

I recently did a survey and analysis at a multi-billion financial institution and I expressly advised them they would never catch up with their backfile if they didn’t capture their documents at the source (branch) or in the field and utilize e-signature and auto-indexing methods whenever possible.  Centralized capture is out!  Distributed capture is in!  Managing social business content lags far behind, but we are storing more content from more and more channels of communication.

Can some docs be destroyed immediately after imaging? Any docs that can NOT be destroyed?

This list is extensive and requires the advice from the financial institutions legal counsel.  As a general rule, keep everything seven years. Keep the Mortgage, Release of Mortgage and Note permanently.

For more information or an ROI analysis of your needs to go paperless contact sales@identifi.net or visit our website www.identifi.net

Who isn’t afraid of failing?!

February 20, 2012
by Alan J. Wiessner

The Wallenda factor is just a normal fear of falling or failing?

“Just in case you haven’t heard, the Wallenda factor refers to the fear of falling or failing. Shortly after Karl Wallenda fell to his death in 1978 (traversing a 75-foot high wire in downtown San Juan, Puerto Rico), his wife, also an aerialist, discussed that fateful San Juan walk, “perhaps his most dangerous.”  She recalled: “All Karl thought about for three straight months prior to it was falling. It was the first time he’d ever thought about that, and it seemed to me that he put all his energies into not falling rather than walking the tightrope.”

Life is like traversing a tight rope.  If you think you need a safety net, it won’t be long before you fall.   Live your life without a safety net, or be prepared to live your life close to the ground.  

Certainly as a business we have operated with a safety net, as dictated by the standards by which we must comply, SSAE16 and PCI compliance, but over the years, we have always sought to be a technology leader.  We strive to offer “insanely great” software, to coin the phrase used by Steve Jobs.

Matt Ridley, The Rational Optimist says, “Pessimism is complacency.”   I think I would have to say at times I have exercised pessimism in certain situations.  I can relate it to looking in the mirror each morning and thinking, “I’m not getting any younger or thinner,  for that matter.” 

To see the video – just click on the picture

Last year I spoke of challenges.  This year, our 24th year in business, I believe anything’s possible!  Last year I spoke of good fortunes, we were fortunate enough to have earned another year in business.  I said I was proud of the intellectual property (IP) and talent we had.  This year I am confident our talent pool here is second to none.    Everyone has bought into The Rational Optimist theme, “Everybody is working for everybody else.”  Whereas last year I said opportunities present challenges.

We have faced those challenges.  We have conquered many and we are prepared to conquer the future.   While politicians in Washington scrum over the economy and jobs,  free market goes out and creates 100 mpg cars, even driverless cars. We need to tell our politicians…anything’s possible.  This year we will focus again on making our products easier to use, easier to install and cloud ready.   Inside Integra, we will continue to concentrate on developing and acquiring better tools to do our jobs in a more productive environment.  Last year’s message was, “Attitude is everything.”   

Celebrating twenty-four (24) years in business March 7th, 2012, we will continue  to encourage a positive attitude in the workplace, with our customers, partners and suppliers.  Everybody is working for everybody else (click on the picture to the left for the video) because again…. anything’s possible.  Finally, last year I predicted growth would be our next greatest challenge and we grew significantly.  We remain well positioned to take advantage of those significant gains in 2012 and beyond.     Alan J. Wiessner, President and CEO, Integra Business Systems, Inc.

To see an awesome video – just click on the picture

I’ll leave you with a great although somewhat unsettling video (click on the photo) and when you feel that wave of pessimism coming on, remember anything’s possible, well almost anything…

“We are what we repeatedly do.  Excellence, then is not an act but a habit.” — Aristotle

Another Milestone

March 8, 2011

It's lonely at the top!

Twenty-three (23) years in the making.

The number 23 certainly doesn’t solicit much sensation. Not like 25 or 50, still a milestone all the same for many businesses, especially today on when we are all on twitter time. 140 characters or less now defines us!

From his book, Lasting Lessons from the Corner Office, Todd G. Buchholtz, quotes a line from a futuristic movie and someone saying, “Where we’re going, we don’t need roads, we just need people made of the right stuff.”

He goes on to say, “One of the statistics out there is that 33 percent of all new businesses fail within the first two years. That number is much higher when you look at the first five years.”

There are a lot of articles, books and blogs out there portraying entrepreneurship in the same sentence with risk, blind luck, or just plain foolish.  Many of the pundits will never know first-hand the emotional roller coaster ride.

Well let me be your Garmin.  I can take you there.

There are hundreds of thousands of small business entrepreneurs that are made of the “right stuff.”  I formed Integra Business Systems, Inc. March 7th, 1988.  Looking back, it was, the most frightening, yet most enjoyable year, I had experienced professionally, for some time.  Funny, since I was unemployed and unemployable.

For more than a year, my corporate headquarters occupied the guest bedroom in the same house we still own and occupy today.  When I look back on how I survived and managed to squeak out a living those first few years I have to say it had to do with confidence and faith in myself and the support of my family.  Yeah, we were scared. I don’t want you to think I’m bragging.  I have never done anything heroic.  I have made sacrifices, but nothing on the same level of a police officer, fireman or soldier.  Tongue in cheek, maybe I have potential?  Maybe in my next life?

As is the case with many small business start-ups, entrepreneurs, I had to liquidate all my savings; then borrow from friends and family to make ends meet.  I borrowed from credit cards, transferred funds from one card to the next, worked the low percentage offers, played the shell game with credit cards.  Yet, I never defaulted on a credit card or a loan.

My experience at NCR Corp. and subsequently at a start-up, North American Business Supply (NABS), operating as a subsidiary of a small bank data-processing company, became invaluable, learning to make something from nothing at all; learning to trust my own instincts, even in the face of overwhelming doubt.

One of the important things I have learned after over 35 years in this business is “don’t burn bridges”.  Often times the organization you dislike the most is composed of people you like the most.  Many of my business associates from my NCR and NABS days kept the faith and helped me build a line of products and services for whom I hold undying loyalty.

Some of the gang outside our offices

In his concluding remarks, Mr. Buchholz observed the CEOs who’s lives he explored all had one thing in common, “At some point they all tumbled into failure and heard trusted friends whisper, “Quit.”

Most small business owners and entrepreneurs will tell you the word “quit” just isn’t in their vocabulary.   And that shapes the American dream after all, does it not?

Note:  Please help us get the good word out.  Share us on your favorite social media site and Stumble Upon.  Thanks.

To Scan or Not to Scan

February 5, 2011

“To Scan or Not to Scan – Counting the costs of imaging systems – and of not using them” is an article written by Katie Kuehener-Hebert published in ICBA Magazine’s February issue.

As a contributor to the article, Wiessner made the following observations…, “To get a more accurate ROI, community banks should calculate both the hard and soft costs of their current operations and compare those with the costs and savings after investing in an imaging system, vendors advise. “The greatest ROI in deploying an ECM system today is in reducing labor costs by increasing the efficiency of processing and retrieving documents;’ offers Alan Wiessner, chief executive of Integra Business Systems Inc., a document imaging provider in Safety Harbor, Fla.

“Banks often discount these soft-cost savings because they fail to recognize they can either eliminate or repurpose employees to reduce costs or to increase productivity, which is essential for growth:’ Reducing or  eliminating printing costs provides the best ROI in terms of hard dollars savings, Wiessner says. These costs include faxing, copying and distributing paper, estimated at 6 to 14 cents a page, depending on the printer, fax or copy machine used. “But banks don’t always know the true amount of these costs because of all the shadow copies employees may be making;’ he says. Those are the copies of documents that employees may be making;’ he says. Those are the copies of documents that employees in the branches or other areas of the bank make so they don’t have to take the time to retrieve documents from the bank’s legacy systems in its centralized operations.  Sometimes it can take days, but customers needing information off of those documents won’t tolerate waiting:’ 

By potentially eliminating these shadow costs, the costs of hardware such as multifunction printers or scanners can often be easily justified, Wiessner continues. One example he gives: Desktop scanners can cost less than $1,000 for each branch. ROI should come within 6 to 18 months of implementation of an enterprise content management system, particularly if it’s a Web based system.

How can iDentifi.net give you a Return on Investment (ROI)?

Contact us at sales@identifi.net. for an indepth study and analysis.

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Imaging Horsepower

September 11, 2010

What’s under the hood of a new generation of document imaging systems?

Best practices in document imaging was defined by large, clunky and expensive scanners for images and optical jukeboxes for storage. In the early 2000s centralized scanning and research was the norm due to limitations in networking technology and the associated hardware costs.  

Desktop computing has morphed into notebook computers and mobile devices.  Every year American businesses generate over 2 trillion documents. At our current rate of information exchange that number will increase every three years.  On the average, a community bank manager can spend 30 minutes to three hours a day (or three months per year) searching for documents.

Internal intranets have replaced local area networks as the preferred method for businesses, including community banks, to share information. This translates into many more documents and many new document types for banks to manage. To deal with the increases in content, document imaging and Computer Output Laser Disk (COLD) has been replaced by Enterprise Content Management (ECM).

More documents to manage on internet time means availability and access to documents must be fast and secure.  Lower-priced scanners and the proliferation of multifunction printers make it easier to capture documents at their source.  Add privacy policies, ever increasing regulation and compliance pressure, compel community banks to use ECM effectively to manage their documents.  Best practices for an ECM system must address several key areas.

Easy to use.

A successful implementation of ECM means the bank employee must find the software easy to use.  An ECM application using the ubiquitous browser is a good choice for searching for documents.  Who isn’t familiar with the internet browser?  This reduces the bank’s cost and the time to train employees, especially in areas of high turnover. It can be as easy as the “Back” button. To compete and to communicate effectively in our new world, documents must be easily accessible to bank employees from a multitude of sources.  Today many documents are “born digital,”  where documents include e-mail and e-mail attachments, text, Web content, word processing documents (such as board minutes and spreadsheets for accounting), digital photos and video.

Fresh off the presses, this post also appears as an article titled “Imaging Horsepower”  that appears in September 2010  ICBA Magazine. It emphasizes best practices and it certainly plays to our strengths! Warning, it’s a yawn if you’re not looking to add ECM or improve your current ECM solution.

The Web is always on.  Bank customers have online banking and can bank anywhere and at anytime.  Bank employees need access to customer documents too, anywhere and anytime. With ECM software a bank employee in a branch could retrieve an image of their ID or Signature card for identification purposes.  If there was no ID on file they could scan it locally, at their desk.  They could take an application for a loan, scan the application and ID to an electronic folder, notifying the credit department to process the application, get it approved and back to the branch employee to complete the loan.  This can reduce the chance of fraud, satisfy regulatory compliance, such as the USA Patriot Act and save the customer time.

An ECM product can also employ an eSignature application which allows bank customers to eSign deposit and loan documents.  Instead of printing to a laser printer the print job is sent to the eSignature application.  All pages appear on the display for signing on a digitizing pad or tablet PC.  One major advantage to an eSignature solution is the capability to predefine all signature areas, initials and number of signers on a document or document set.  The signing process cannot be completed until all signatures and initials have been completed. This saves time, especially if the bank employee has conducted the signing at the bank customer’s home or office.

eSignature can eliminate or substantially reduces printing costs.  The bank’s eSigned copy is automatically stored to the ECM archive.  The customer can opt to receive the eSigned documents by e-mail, on a thumb drive or the documents can still be printed after the signing.  eSignature comes with the added benefit that bank documents no longer need to be printed, signed and then scanned into the ECM archive.  This saves both time and money.

Easy to implement.

Community banks rely heavily on IT for the latest and greatest technology necessary to compete with larger banks and comply with ever increasing government regulation.  An ECM application that is easy to deploy (one click installation) and receives unattended updates via a secure Web server is ideal for a busy IT department.  ECM applications, once written for the desktop PC (legacy applications), are now written for the Web.  Today’s ECM platform should include one-click technology to deploy the ECM application across the enterprise to multiple locations easily and efficiently.  Again, time and money saved.

Many community bank branches have invested in multifunction printers, which include the ability to scan documents.  An ECM system can compatible with MFP devices is a plus.   The availability of bar-coded documents from most new account and loan origination vendors make scanned documents easier to identify and archive. Documents can be captured (imaged) in the branch, then indexed and store centrally by the ECM system and accessed by any user across the enterprise who has been given the rights to access them.

The ability to drag and drop “born digital” documents into the ECM system, easily identify and file these documents from a multitude of sources is essential.

Secure.

Some would argue making documents available via the browser is risky.  Which is more secure?  A file folder on someone’s desk or encrypted documents in a secure file folder stored on a secure server in a secure location accessible only via a private network?  Many community banks have multiple lines of business, which require multiple levels of document security. For example, someone in new accounts may not be allowed to access loan documents.  Other personnel may need to access both new accounts and loan documents but only customer related documents.  They may need to be restricted from access to employee only documents and human resources. With an ECM system, multiple layers of user security down to the document level is possible.  Only the persons that have been given the rights to view the document can view it.

Compliance, completing a successful audit.

Internal audits as well as audits from state and federal governments can be conducted much more quickly and efficiently with ECM.  An ECM system that employs document tracking allows the bank to define which documents are needed for every type of deposit or loan transaction.  Document tracking can determine if all the associated documents have been archived or if documents are missing.  Reminders are created and e-mail or printed notices are sent when a recurring document (such as financial statements or certificates of insurance) is needed.  If documents are missing reports, notices are sent to the responsible bank employees and managers. Logs show an audit trail.

Your ECM vendor must produce and keep current, a vendor management package.  The package must include information such as SAS70 certification, audited financials, a security agreement, acceptable use policy, password policy, termination policy and a disaster recovery plan, to name a few  documents and policies required by community banks from their ECM vendor.

Legality.

An ECM system should include a log that will record when a document has been viewed, printed, e-mailed or whether a document has been revised. It will display by default the current version of the document and also keep older revisions.  Document retention policies can be set on each document type as to the length of time the documents are will be viewable, when they are moved to long term archive or when they are destroyed.

Documents will not be moved or destroyed without the administrator of the ECM system being notified and given the option to change the document(s) status. Any eSigned document that is altered will cause the eSignature to be replaced by a large red “X” in the signature areas.

Disaster recovery.

A co-location facility is recommended to be either manned by a third-party provider with the technical skills to back up your mission critical applications and be located within one day’s vehicle travel from the primary facility.  Community banks that may not be able to take advantage of the latest ECM technology due to cost or lack of IT resources can employ an ECM solution from a Software as a Service (SaaS) provider.  Most SaaS models will include disaster recovery which essential to an ECM deployment in today’s world of regulation, compliance and security.

Go Green, Save Money.

ECM software can cut down on the cost of printing, reprinting, faxing, postage and courier runs.  If everyone across the enterprise has the ability to view the documents they need, there is no need to keep “shadow” copies of the documents and files in multiple locations.  This saves money and also makes for good press.  Community banks that already have a “Go Green” initiative or wish to implement one can say with confidence their ECM product saves trees.

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Happy Halloween from Identifi

October 31, 2016

Integra Further Distinguishes Itself by Earning a Microsoft Gold Competency in Application Development

February 26, 2015

Microsoft Gold

Safety Harbor, FL — (Feb 26, 2015) – Integra today announced it has attained Gold Certified Partner status in the Microsoft Partner Program with a competency in Application Development, recognizing Integra’s expertise and impact in the technology marketplace. As a Gold Certified Partner, Integra has demonstrated expertise with Microsoft technologies and a proven ability to meet customers’ needs. Microsoft Gold Certified Partners receive a rich set of benefits, including access, training and support, giving them a competitive advantage in the channel.

Microsoft Competencies are designed to help differentiate a partner’s capabilities with specific Microsoft technologies to customers looking for a particular type of solution. Each Competency has a unique set of requirements and benefits, formulated to accurately represent the specific skills and services that partners bring to the technology industry. Within select Competencies, there are Specializations that focus on specific solution areas that recognize deeper expertise within that Competency. Serving as a specialized path to earning those Competencies, Specializations give direct access to the tools and resources that support that specific area of focus.

Integra’s iDentifi.Net product was tested and approved by Microsoft in February. The company achieved its Application Development Competency by meeting testing requirements for its software, its operating system, and other components – and by receiving the required number of customer references.

As an ISV, an application development competency allows Integra access to all of Microsoft’s server platforms to enable seamless integration with those products.

“Customers are looking for partner companies they can trust to build a positive customer experience with the platforms they depend on,” said Aaron Stine, Senior Vice President of Development and Professional Services at Integra. “As a Gold Certified Partner, Integra has demonstrated its expertise in providing customer satisfaction using Microsoft products and technology.”

About Integra Business Systems, Inc.

Integra is a software development company that produces document imaging, management and workflow with 20 years experience in the financial services, real estate and other industries. The iDentifi product line delivers a wide range of features for scanning, storing, coding, tracking, finding and viewing documents throughout the enterprise. Modular solutions include storage and management of all document types, workflow, enterprise report management (COLD), electronic signatures, signature and photo ID verification, document version control, document retention policies and document on and off line archival. For more information visit http://www.identifi.net.

 

 

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