JULY 2011


IN THIS ISSUE


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Tana's Tech Tip

A QuickBooks invoicing tip for VCK & Veri-Shred users.

Did you know that invoices created manually in Quick-Books outside of VCK or Veri-Shred will adopt the last invoice number plus one?

If you import from one of these ASI solutions and then need to create an invoice manually in QuickBooks, be sure to change the invoice number in QuickBooks for the manually generated one so as not to duplicate the invoice number sequence coming from VCK or Veri-Shred on the next billing cycle import.

For example, a user imports invoices 1-100 into QB from VCK. The next day, they create an invoice manually in QB and it automatically picks up number 101 since the last number it sees is 100.  A week later they import invoices from VCK again which are numbered 101-150 and the QB import “errors” since it sees a duplicate invoice.

Should this happen to you, you can either: 1. acknowledge the duplicate invoice number and click OK, which creates a duplicate invoice number in QuickBooks, or; 2. click Cancel, which kills the import.


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WebShare provides ASI Users with online webinar training sessions including step-by-step instruction and review of neat features offered by ASI's many records and information management software solutions.

Register today for the next WebShare webinar.

VCK-SQL Customer Setup
August 10, 2011
10am-11am & 2pm-3pm EST

Visit the ASI Learning Center for loads of educational and support information available online and onsite.


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August 24-26, 2011
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ARMA International
October 17-19, 2011
Washington, D.C.

PRISM/NAID/ARMA Joint European Conference
November 7-9, 2011
London, England


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THE 411 ON ASI

Please send any payments, hardware and other correspondence to:

Andrews Software, Inc.
6900 W. Snowville Road
Cleveland, OH 44141

Toll-Free: 800-807-2093
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www.AndrewsSoftware.com
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The value of cultivating
relationships through rain or shine
Scott Bidwell, President/COO

Are you finding customer service to be just a little bit better these days? According to some customer service experts, this is what happens when times are tough and customers aren't opening their wallets quite as wide or as often. I do know that, during challenging times, the quality of the relationships that your business has cultivated between itself, its customers and fellow vendors becomes all the more obvious.

As with personal relationships, when we're faced with a difficult business situation, we seek out those we trust and rely on. We share ideas and advice and generally support one another. I'm not saying that the RIM services industry is experiencing the same economic strife that other business segments are facing. As an industry, I'd say we're doing okay. What I AM saying is that, when relationships aren't tended during the sunny days, you may find yourself without that umbrella of support during the rainy ones.

We sincerely value the network of professional colleagues we've formed over our many years in the industry. We gain so much from our clients around the globe to industry associations to fellow vendors. And as much as we gain, we try to give back. It may be through outstanding support and sharing industry expertise, active participation, joint business opportunities, advice…I could go on and on. This collective network of colleagues and companies I am speaking of represents some of the most highly committed businesses to the industry and customer service.

To give you an opportunity to learn a bit about why they are so valuable to the RIM services industry, we're launching a column entitled “Gimme 5” in this month's ASI Archive. Gimme 5 shines a spotlight on some of the businesses we work closely with. Our inaugural column features Lori Palmer, EVP of REB Storage Systems Int'l. And while and I'm not sure if customer service has improved in the face of today's economic times, I know REB and the other companies featured in Gimme 5 consistently deliver it. I'm of the mindset that companies who are committed to excellent service do so whether economic times are good or bad. Those are the companies I want to do business with.

Email your story to: SBidwell@AndrewsSoftware.com.

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Gimme 5

We asked Lori Palmer , EVP for REB Storage Systems Int'l , to tackle five questions about the industry. Large, small, new construction or existing, you're sure to find a tidbit relevant to your records center.

1. What are the most important factors a records center should take into consideration when selecting and designing its shelving system?

The most important factors may vary depending upon the building's particular features. Is the building a high-rise single-level warehouse or a multi-story facility with freight elevators? Is it an existing building or new construction?

The most important factors to consider for an existing building are ceiling height, floor loading capacity, and seismic zone location. This will help determine the most appropriate system for the building. A primary goal is to maximize carton storage (density) in available space. System options include Single Level accessed by rolling ladders or order pickers, or Multi-Level with stairways and catwalks.

As for new construction, ideally one should consult with a storage system professional during the planning stages as the building design is being determined. For example, building columns should be strategically located so that they do not interfere with the placement of aisles in the racking system. Proper planning will result in the columns being located so that they minimize carton loss to maximize storage revenues. Your storage system professional should be able to help address code issues regarding sprinkler systems, egress plans, etc. during the building planning stage. The goal is to address all possible issues prior to building construction to avoid possible permitting delays or costly change orders to modify the racking system.

2. REB Storage Systems has been designing and building record archive storage systems for over 40 years. What are some of the most significant changes affecting storage system design during this time?

Changes in regulatory codes have impacted most records centers in North America and now worldwide. Increased competition between commercial records centers has also driven changes in rack design. Many years ago, density of storage was less of an issue and many centers stored cartons 1 or 2 high x 1 or 2 deep on a shelf. Today, the trend is to store cartons up to 3 high x 3, or even 4 deep, on shelves to reduce aisles and maximize storage. The time required to access cartons increases so productivity suffers. One must consider the increased labor expense vs. the increased storage revenue when making a decision as to the most efficient records storage system.

3. What regulatory issues are most important for records centers to be aware of and how do some of these affect the design of their shelving systems?

Storage height and the type of overhead sprinkler system at the ceiling are key considerations when designing a shelving system. Depending upon the municipality, storage higher than 12 feet may require 50% open area shelf decking. Unobstructed horizontal and transverse flue spaces for water penetration are also important. Adequate space must be provided to assure cartons do not obstruct the flue spaces. These issues should be addressed prior to making a decision as to the size and specifications of the records storage units.

4. With so many installations under its belt, REB must offer some unique system components. Is there one that stands out in your mind that helps records centers work efficiently?

I believe our Snap Shelf 50% open steel shelf deck provides the greatest benefits for records centers vs. other open shelf alternatives. Because of its 50% open shelf area, Snap Shelf may be utilized to meet applicable NFPA fire code regulations. Snap Shelf ensures maximum support is maintained below each stack of boxes and also allows boxes to slide easily on and off the shelf. Alternate products, such as wire, create extra friction when sliding boxes and over time the wire can create indentations into the corrugated material, damaging the bottom of the carton.

5. What is the most unique and/or challenging record storage system design/installation REB has undertaken?

I can think of two. The first was designed several years ago and was comprised of a three-level racking system for a major client in the banking industry. Our client's objective was to have several miles of active open mortgage files stored 1 high x 1 deep at ground level for ease of accessibility. Approximately 500,000 inactive cartons were to be stored 3 high x 3 deep at the 2 catwalk levels directly above the open files. The client wanted to store all of its files within its existing building without the need to have separate facilities for their active and inactive records. REB's unique racking design accomplished this objective and the system was permitted in record time.

The second took place at the end of 2010 when we completed a project for a commercial records center client that consisted of 750,000 carton locations. This was a three-level system that included a vertical lift and multiple stairways. Our client had deadlines to meet and indicated the entire system had to be installed and permitted within 28 days after delivery of the materials. By carefully planning each day and working multiple shifts we accepted the challenge and accomplished the task in 21 days, 7 days ahead of schedule! This beautiful system can be viewed on our website.

Many thanks to Lori for taking time out of her busy schedule to tackle these questions. For more pics of REB Storage System International's well-designed, and yes, beautiful, rack systems visit www.rebsteel.com . Lori can be contacted via e-mail at lpalmer@rebsteel.com .

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Time flies...Especially with only a "Minute to Win It!"

ASI is known to put its own special twist to things so why should its July 4th office party be any different? This year's July 4th office event featured “Minute to Win It” team-building games that included:

  1. stacking 3 golf balls on top of one other
  2. “Junk in Your Trunk”, comprised of a tissue box holding 10 ping pong balls that is strapped to your backside. Contestants had to shake, jump, etc. to get them all out – without using their hands!
  3. stacking 4 chapsticks using chopsticks.

We split the ASI staff into three teams, with each team completing the three games. Congratualtions go to the winning team, which included Jim Miller, Marty Hrovat, Kevin Baird, and Scott Bidwell, though everyone won something! Prizes included sparklers, water guns, sidewalk chalk, and panera gift cards.

Sadly, we have no video footage of the festivities, however, we did snap a few pics to share. Hope you enjoy them as much as we enjoyed creating them!

Kevin Baird demonstrating fierce concentration as he attempts to stack the golf balls - ultimately unsuccessfully.

The uber-talented Tana McAtee stacks chapsticks with chopsticks. She was the only contestant able to accomplish this particular game!

   

Brian Chivers concentrating oh-so-hard to stack the chapsticks with chopsticks.

   

Group photo of the "Minute to Win It" winning participants.

Thanks go to to Andrea Villasenor, ASI Customer Support Specialist, for story contribution!

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Getting inside the VORTEX
Colleen Francis

Many of my clients are struggling with how to ensure they finish their selling year at or above target. My message to you is go back to your current customer list.

Your customer list is your most important sales asset. Not only is it easier to sell more to existing customers (because they already like you and trust you), it is more profitable. The most recent studies show that repeat sales are up to 15 times more profitable than new sales. If you are a business owner - this statistic should excite you! If you are a sales rep, take note that one reason repeat sales are more profitable is because repeat sales are faster. When I teach Sell More, in Less Time, and Make More Money" we focus on relationship building to ensure you are capturing as many repeat sales as possible, for this very reason.

I should note that there are lists, and then there are lists. The sales rule of thumb is that a list loses 10% of its value each month of absent contact. So, 10 months of no contact with your customers means your list is worth nothing&and you might as well cold call. Relationship neglect results in many sales losses, including seduction by competitors and the loss of referrals which over time can result in 10's or 100's of thousands of dollars in losses for your business.

Your list is as valuable as the quality of relationship you have with the customers on your list their perception of that relationship. To sell more to the customers on your list you must transition your thinking from "customer list" to "building a relationship with my customer".

You can create a profitable relationship with your customers using the following components (read VORTEX):

Click here to learn the 6 VORTEX Components.

Reprinted from connectIT, June 16, 2011 online edition.

Colleen Francis, Sales Expert, is Founder and President of Engage Selling Solutions ( www.engageselling.com ).

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