Castell Howell

Castell Howell Case Study


Castell Howell wanted to manage their operational documents more efficiently and free up valuable office space.

About the Client

Castell Howell is a leading independent food wholesaler based in South Wales. They serve over 4000 customers, across a wide range of organisations, including hospitals, hotels, restaurants, pubs, cafes, hospitals, schools and leisure establishments. They distribute via their Cross Hands hub plus depots in Merthyr, Avonmouth & Chirk, and have a wholesale Cash and Carry at Carmarthen.

The Problem

Castell Howell handles large amounts of operational documents receiving 60 supplier deliveries each day. Each delivery has associated delivery notes and invoices resulting in 8 filing cabinets being filled each year. Having to keep invoices for 6 years means older documents are kept in bulk storage. Two years ago CH moved to new 50,000 sq ft premises in Cross Hands and were finding that valuable space was being taken up storing paper.

Castell Howell also carries out 60 delivery runs per day each one having its own Delivery Run sheet. These sheets include Proof of Delivery and are crucial documents for Credit Control.

In addition invoices associated with their £0.5M per month overheads such as fuel would need to be sent from one location to another to obtain management approval and payment.

Their Financial Director Nigel Williams realised that their manual filing, storage, retrieval and handling of all this paperwork was taking effort away from more important tasks such as Credit Control and using up valuable office space.

The Solution

A 40 user combined network and web version of File Stream Document Management with 10 concurrent licenses and Workflow plus a Canon DR 5010C scanner were installed by their office equipment suppliers Algebra who are based in Cardiff. Web and network access are available.

Initially File Stream was set up to store all supplier and delivery documents with all paper documents being converted to image files using the high speed Canon scanner.

Further electronic cabinets were set up by Nigel to manage other company documents such as insurance policies, HP leases and P11D’s as well as departmental cabinets.

File Stream Workflow was then used to electronically manage the process of approval and payment of invoices associated with operational overheads such as transport.

The Benefits

  • Through converting paper documents into electronic files which are stored in File Stream Document Management, filing cabinets have been removed thus freeing up valuable office space.
  • These electronic documents can now be called up quickly on users’ screens across all locations thus freeing up staff for more productive tasks.
  • Their Management Accounts can now be run a few days after month end as all overhead invoices are scanned on receipt and are therefore available more quickly for this process.

Why File Stream Document Management?

Having looked at several systems which could do the job, Nigel chose File Stream Document Management because it had been designed with the user in mind and was deemed to be easier to use than the others considered.

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Software used:

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