The Prudential' s group taxation division has switched to CD-ROM to store thousands of archived files.
The group, which is responsible for co-ordinating and submitting tax returns for over 180 companies, will use a Pioneer CE Jukebox to store its records.
Under the previous manual data storage system, the volumes of paper generated were so vast that the majority of the division's files had to be stored in a warehouse, at great expense, away from the division's central London offices.
To solve this storage problem, the company has introduced a Pioneer DRM 5004X CD-ROM jukebox in conjunction with a Canon Canofile system to store archived documents.
Incorporating Pioneer's Quadraspin technology, the jukebox is designed to handle large volumes of data. Offering a high sustained data transfer rate for CD-ROM on a network, Pioneer claims the system enables data transfer from disks at four times the standard transfer speed. All live documents will be stored electronically as well.
The division uses a combination of optical and CDs in the system. Michael Coles, general manager of the Prudential's taxation division, explained: "While projects are live and documents need to be changed and manipulated, they will be stored on optical disks. However, one CD-ROM stores 10 times as much data as an optical disk, and the cost of each CD is 15 times less than an optical disk - around #10 as opposed to #150. When they become closed cases, stored for reference purposes, it makes financial and security sense to transfer the data onto CD."
Now that every piece of paperwork arriving or leaving the office is electronically stored, any document can be pinpointed immediately by any networked staff member.
According to Prudential, an added benefit of the CD storage system is that its consultants can carry huge amounts of data with them when travelling to subsidiary companies. Consultants can take literally thousands of files with them, whereas before it would have been a struggle to transport hard copies of even three or four files.
In addition, all team members have modem links. "In effect, they can take the whole filing system with them," concluded Coles.
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