Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Pat Romanski, Yeshim Deniz, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Andy Thurai

Blog Feed Post

The Football Pools makes safe bet on KODAK Scan Station network scanners to improve efficiency and reduce the cost of coupon processing

May 12, 2014 - Kodak Alaris announces today that The Football Pools has selected its KODAK Scan Station 520EX network scanners to implement a company-wide solution to digitise the thousands of paper football coupons customers complete each week. This has simplified all bet processing throughout the UK with the investment paying for itself within just six months as transport costs have been saved.

Founded in 1923, The Football Pools is the oldest football gaming company in the world and during the last 90 years has paid out over £3 billion in prize money to 60 million lucky winners.

In 2009, Littlewoods, Vernons and Zetters merged to form The Football Pools offering a variety of games such as Treble Chance, Home-Draw-Away, Premier 10 and Lotto. Today, the Football Pools is still a core part of football fans weekly experience with prizes of up to £3 million to be won.

To process coupons, The Football Pools has two established channels. Firstly, individual collectors pick up coupons door to door each week at people's homes and deliver them to a main collector who in turn takes them to one of 25 concession and satellite offices around the country. Secondly, other customers send their coupons directly by post to The Football Pools' Walton head office.

Collectors visit on a Thursday, coupons are collated at the concession offices on a Friday and have to be physically returned to Liverpool that night for processing on a Saturday.

Conleth Byrne, Managing Director of The Football Pools, says, "The logistics involved in the collector route are both expensive and hugely time critical given that we need to process coupons quickly, declare a dividend to customers and pay our winners."

To address this, The Football Pools has deployed desktop KODAK Scan Station 520EX network scanners in its concession offices to digitise this whole process. Operators load coupons in batches, input a collectors reference, the paperwork is scanned, quantity checked, and the images then transmitted over an ADSL network to a server located at head office. From start to finish, it now takes around 30 minutes to process each remote office site - vastly improving organisational efficiency and productivity, as well as saving money. Physical coupons no longer have to be collected and driven to Liverpool.

Images are stored locally on the Scan Station's 320 GB hard drive, but in addition, a copy is saved to a USB drive for redundancy and to ensure no single point of failure.

Peter Dent, The Football Pools' technical manager says, "Saving to USB adds a further level of security for the data. If the network were to ever go down, we could simply take the drive to another office or even courier it to Liverpool directly so that we can start processing the coupons."

Featuring a large 8 inch LCD touch screen, the duplex KODAK Scan Station network scanners are rated up to 3,000 pages per day and do not have to be connected to a host PC [they are both PC and scanner combined]. Further to an extensive evaluation, The Football Pools purchased 33 units from Kodak Alaris partner, ReadSoft, in what was an easy three-month implementation.

In addition to the built-in hard drive and ability to write automatically to a USB drive, the network scanners from Kodak Alaris were chosen as they are robust and simple to operate for nontechnical users. Furthermore, the business has used KODAK Scanners for over 12 years and has been pleased with the quality of the service and support provided.

Dent adds, "Reliability has been impressive and the Scan Station scanners are pretty much maintenance free with the feeder rollers easy to replace when required. Their lifespan is rated to about 120,000 A4 pages but given our coupons are smaller, we get more than this. I've stuck with Kodak Alaris as in my opinion its products are superior to competitors. They might cost more, but you get what you pay for and the service and support we've had has been excellent."

The Scan Station 520 EX is an open architecture model in the series which allows partners and customers to tailor the scanner to suit their particular needs. This is the case at The Football Pools. On each machine, a bespoke version of IDT Capture from BCT has been installed to allow operators to segment which folders coupons are then automatically scanned to - four buttons have been created relating to pools, other games, accounts and miscellaneous [a folder then requiring manual input].

Once images are checked and transmitted back, a heavily customised version of ReadSoft Forms applies various business rules to the data and ultimately sends an output file containing information such as selections, competition type, date of competition and cost to an in-house developed processing system which processes the entry and manages payments to customers.

For those customers who send their coupons by post, The Football Pools uses KODAK i780 production scanners located at its head office which are also integrated with ReadSoft Forms solution.

Neil Murphy, Kodak's UK sales manager says, "The project is a super example of how a distributed networked scanning solution can truly pay dividends for companies with multiple geographically split sites. Coupon processing used to be an intensive all day, ten-hour operation for staff on a Saturday. A huge amount of money and time is now being saved with The Football Pools able to bring forward other work that staff now focus on instead."

- ENDS -

Notes to editors

About Kodak Alaris
On September 3, 2013, the U.K. Kodak Pension Plan (KPP) completed its acquisition of the KODAK Document Imaging and Personalized Imaging businesses from Eastman Kodak Company and created a new company known as Kodak Alaris. The new company and its name preserve the heritage and legacy of the Kodak brand, while embodying the speed and agility to meet market needs and changes. Kodak Alaris, which is licensed to use the Kodak brand, will focus on strategic, ongoing investments for these businesses to ensure long-term growth and success. The Kodak trademark and trade dress are used under license from Eastman Kodak Company.

About Kodak Alaris' Document Imaging Division
Kodak Alaris' Document Imaging solutions enable customers to capture and consolidate data from digital and paper sources, understand and extract valuable insight from the contents, and deliver the right information to the right people at the right time. Our offerings include award-winning scanners, capture and information management software, an expanding range of professional services and industry leading service and support. With customers ranging from small offices to global operations, Kodak Alaris delivers superior systems and solutions to automate business processes, enhance customer interactions and enable better business decisions.

For more information, please visit kodakalaris.com/go/dinews. Follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/kodakdi and visit our blog at infooverdrive.com/

Media Contact
Tom Herbst
Kodak Alaris EAMER PR lead
+44 (0)7768 145571 or +44(0)207 274 9937
[email protected]

Source: RealWire

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By RealWire News Distribution

RealWire is a global news release distribution service specialising in the online media. The RealWire approach focuses on delivering relevant content to the receivers of our client's news releases. As we know that it is only through delivering relevance, that influence can ever be achieved.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
DXWorldEXPO LLC, the producer of the world's most influential technology conferences and trade shows has announced the 22nd International CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO "Early Bird Registration" is now open. Register for Full Conference "Gold Pass" ▸ Here (Expo Hall ▸ Here)
Bill Schmarzo, Tech Chair of "Big Data | Analytics" of upcoming CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO New York (November 12-13, 2018, New York City) today announced the outline and schedule of the track. "The track has been designed in experience/degree order," said Schmarzo. "So, that folks who attend the entire track can leave the conference with some of the skills necessary to get their work done when they get back to their offices. It actually ties back to some work that I'm doing at the University of ...
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo, taking place November 12-13 in New York City, NY, is co-located with 22nd international CloudEXPO | first international DXWorldEXPO and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time t...
The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform and how we integrate our thinking to solve complicated problems. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, demonstrated how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and sh...
CloudEXPO New York 2018, colocated with DXWorldEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City and will bring together Cloud Computing, FinTech and Blockchain, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, AI, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location.
The best way to leverage your Cloud Expo presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at Cloud Expo. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audiences.
Cell networks have the advantage of long-range communications, reaching an estimated 90% of the world. But cell networks such as 2G, 3G and LTE consume lots of power and were designed for connecting people. They are not optimized for low- or battery-powered devices or for IoT applications with infrequently transmitted data. Cell IoT modules that support narrow-band IoT and 4G cell networks will enable cell connectivity, device management, and app enablement for low-power wide-area network IoT. B...
What are the new priorities for the connected business? First: businesses need to think differently about the types of connections they will need to make – these span well beyond the traditional app to app into more modern forms of integration including SaaS integrations, mobile integrations, APIs, device integration and Big Data integration. It’s important these are unified together vs. doing them all piecemeal. Second, these types of connections need to be simple to design, adapt and configure...
The standardization of container runtimes and images has sparked the creation of an almost overwhelming number of new open source projects that build on and otherwise work with these specifications. Of course, there's Kubernetes, which orchestrates and manages collections of containers. It was one of the first and best-known examples of projects that make containers truly useful for production use. However, more recently, the container ecosystem has truly exploded. A service mesh like Istio addr...
Nicolas Fierro is CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions. He is a programmer, technologist, and operations dev who has worked with Ethereum and blockchain since 2014. His knowledge in blockchain dates to when he performed dev ops services to the Ethereum Foundation as one the privileged few developers to work with the original core team in Switzerland.