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Case Study: Manufacturing

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DocuWare helped Salco Products streamline workflows and manage their documents. Now, all documents are stored according to their retention period and then they are automatically deleted.

Salco Products makes embedded hatch covers for railway hopper cars, a specialty product that allows ventilating cargo while in transport.

Founded in 1985, Salco Products quickly succeeded in solving a challenging problem for railway transportation: ventilating hopper cars by way of specialty hatch covers, which prevent cargo from getting moldy or contaminated. Salco Products has been manufacturing these hatch covers and other railways products for over 40 years and currently supports over 500 customers. This type of business requires the company to work closely with the Federal Railroad Administration to keep track of documentation and be able to quickly provide documents in case of an audit. “We have to follow certain guidelines and meet certain standards for document retention,” says Mohs. “And if we don’t have the documentation we will be fined for non-conformance.”

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We went with DocuWare was for compliance reasons. We work a lot with the Federal Railroad Administration to keep track of documentation, and we must be able to quickly provide documents upon an audit. Not being able to find a document is a problem!

Jason Mohs
Global Compliance Engineer

DocuWare Proves a Reliable Storage Solution

Before installing DocuWare, the company stored its documents on a local network, but that was not ideal, Mohs says. “The biggest problem was that you would store something and then you’d go back to edit it to find that somebody has deleted the whole folder.” Salco Products needed a more reliable solution. The company chose to install DocuWare after conducting research on available options and because one of Salco Products’ suppliers had a good experience with DocuWare. Migrating to DocuWare took about 10 months, but it was worth the wait, Mohs shares his experience. “Now we can always find our documents,” he says. “We have over a hundred DocuWare users and over a terabyte of storage space in our Compliance Cabinet that holds 718,000 documents. Since we installed DocuWare in 2019, we had to increase our storage capacity three times.” All the documents are kept according to their retention period and are set to be automatically deleted once that period ends.

DocuWare Helps Managing Workflows

DocuWare also helped manage workflows. Salco Products has many different processes that involve multiple steps done by multiple people. “We have over 30 or 40 different workflows that we use in our day-to-day business,” explains Mohs. One of them is the nonconformance workflow which is triggered when a customer files a complaint. When Salco Products’ Customer Support enters the inquiry into the system, DocuWare kicks off a workflow for the complaint review, which then progresses through the designated steps. Another important workflow is activated when a technical drawing or a procedure needs to be updated. These requests are now also submitted through forms, which start the workflow that requires input or approvals from multiple people and at different timepoints. “DocuWare helps us keep all that organized,” Mohs says.

DocuWare Improved Organization Across the Board

In addition to the Compliance Cabinet, Salco Products created cabinets for manuals, processes, procedures, forms and other documents. “We also now have a cabinet for our training documents and materials, and certain completion certificates,” Mohs says. “We never really managed this before DocuWare. Now we are much more organized.”

"We're over a terabyte of storage space and as of right now we have 718,000 documents in DocuWare.

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