ABBYY FormReader Installation at Inmarko, Inc.
The Novosibirsk-based company Inmarko is the largest ice-cream manufacturer in Russia with an annual production volume of nearly 31,000 tons (2003). The company employs over 5,000 people and sells ice-cream across the country, from street kiosks to international retail chains like Metro and Auchan.
Inmarko had a complicated procedure for processing product requests from retailers. Request forms were distributed to supply agents who filled in the numbers coming from each retail point and submitted them to the data entry department. Employees in the department manually entered the forms into the ‘1C:Enterprise’™ ERP system, from which purchase orders, delivery truck optimum routes, and other documents were automatically generated and passed to the logistics department.
In search of a solution to the problem, Inmarko’s IT Department discovered FormReader by ABBYY Software House, that provides automatic data input from printed and hand whritten forms. As FormReader is a ‘box’ product, no costly integration was needed; most of the installation and tune-up work was done in-house, with minimum intervention from ATAPY Software, the local ABBYY dealer. FormReader required no changes in application form design and no special staff training, therefore the costs of printing, distribution and collection of the forms did not change. The FormReader’s hardware requirements were just as simple, a regular flatbed scanner and a common office computer.
With FormReader in operation, work that previously required three typists now requires just one and, even with the reduction in staff, the form entry is completed much faster. Input productivity increased six times, and the entire distribution logistics of the company improved dramatically. Particularly important, the number of mistakes decreased very significantly, with the most ‘disastrous’ mistakes disappearing completely. This successful experience inspired Inmarko to use FormReader for capturing other types of corporate documents. This new challenge required no additional investment at all, as FormReader can be configured for processing up to 99 document types in one batch, automatically distinguishing one document type from another.
Now the same operator, using the same hardware and software, processes different types of Inmarko’s documents. A similar system was installed at Inmarko’s plant in another city, and more installations are on the way.
Inmarko is not the only company to appreciate the efficiency and stability of the ABBYY FormReader. It is has hundreds of users around the world, including the Federal Revenue Service of Russia (Personal Income Statements, Taxpayer Identification Number application, and other tax forms), the Russian Ministry of Education (examination papers in the centralized all-Russian student testing program), the Russian State Pension Fund (insurance application forms and premium reports), the Ministry of Rural Development of Malaysia (agriculture statistic reports), Adidas (retailer order sheets and questionnaires), Phillip Morris (sweepstakes entry forms), Finansbank/Turkey (credit card application forms), Target Media/UK (check-box questionnaires), and Allianz Poistovna/Poland (vehicle insurance applications).
FormReader contains an Application Program Interface for interaction with other applications. This makes it possible to use FormReader not only as a standalone application, but to create entire production lines for mass input of documents. The three largest lines are installed at the Moscow Tax Inspectorate. In each of them one computer is responsible for scanning, up to 10 computers provide automatic OCR, and another 10 computers allow operators to proofread recognition results and correct mistakes. Each line can process up to 3,500 pages of had printed forms per hour.
ASYS Softwareenwicklung GmbH (Germany) integrated ABBYY FormReader into SMARTscan, an ASYS workflow automation solution for pharmacies. With ABBYY FormReader, all the work associated with input and processing of hand printed medicine prescriptions was reduced to several clicks and can almost be completed by a pharmacy salesperson while talking to the client.
ATAPY Software, a development branch of ABBYY Software House, specializes in programming tools and add-ons for ABBYY products, including FormReader. ATAPY employs ABBYY-trained experts in the cutting-edge FlexiForm technology for processing document types traditionally considered ‘non-automatable’, such as phone bills, various invoices, job applicant resumes, library cards and many more. ATAPY can also integrate FormReader into any Enterprise Document Management System for the benefit of any prospective customer or partner.
Inmarko is the Number One company in the Russian ice cream market based on its output and sales volume. It has a domestic market share of over 16%. Established in 1993, Inmarko has its own factories and cold storage facilities in Omsk, Tula, and Novosibirsk. Today it employs a staff of over 5,000.
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