Catasauqua Press

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Hanover council reviews enterprise software

Wednesday, October 25, 2017 by PAUL CMIL Special to The Press in Local News

Hanover Township had an open session with KDI Office Technology Sept. 20 to discuss the township’s data needs. Councilmen Curtis Wegfahrt and Bob Heimbecker asked for the session. The objective of any future changes in the structure and role of data information is to provide enterprise software solutions.

The objective of enterprise software is to have all data, present and historical, accessible and searchable by any authorized user. Options abound, and separate modules can be added to the system as needs dictate.

“For example, all the stuff we have in the garage is inventory,” Wegfahrt said. “A module would allow us to track individual pieces of inventory. We can keep usage and maintenance records on all equipment and have it readily accessible.”

Historical records could be digitized.

“If the records are handwritten, it makes it costlier to digitize the record, so it could be searched by keywords,” said Jack Seese, of KDI, who presented the company’s concept.

According to the township, there are about 220,000 images that need to be added to the database. Getting everything sorted into a computer costs 70 cents per image. It takes about three months and is typically done off site.

“We are much better prepared to handle a lot of images at our site rather than here,” Seese said.

Chairman Bruce Paulus did mention there is more than adequate room in the basement for processing documents.

Paper records would be held for a designated period of time until everyone is familiar with the system.

Some members of the staff questioned the need for what seems to be an elaborate system for a small township.

According to Josephine Romano, administrative assistant, the township holds most of the records it requires on the existing system. Legacy data is filed in the basement storage room.

“We need to access the paper data a few times a year,” she said.

Most of the existing data is on data systems. Blueprints and other geographical records were converted to a GIS system.

KDI is a new vendor for the township. The firm presented its information earlier this year at a convention for township officials highlighting its credentials. The township intends to explore other alternatives to determine the best way to move forward with its data needs. Part of the decision-making will include determining the township’s needs.

The township intends to contact a few out-of-state firms that tout their enterprise solutions and the existing information technology vendor, Harris.