The Arizona Court of Appeals was formed in 1965 and is located in the City of Tucson. The Court handles approximately 1100 to 1400 cases annually.
The Court’s Goal
In 1996, staff at the Arizona Court of Appeals began researching document imaging and management solutions. The goal was to provide judges, staff attorneys, other courts, and the public with more efficient access to case files and court records. Additional goals included:
- reliable, long-term storage
- tighter security control
- easier sharing and transport
- reduced duplication and accumulation
Attaining the Goal
The staff believed automation would be necessary to meet these goals and their overall objective of saving time and money. They set out to find an electronic document management system (EDMS) provider with several criteria in mind.
The solution provider would need to demonstrate a strong commitment to customer service and product support. Providers with this ideal would stand apart from those who offered only a technical approach—although a technical expertise would be essential. The EDMS itself would need to be easy-to-use, scalable, and cost effective. In addition, the system would need to be flexible enough to accommodate the Court’s specific needs.
This last criteria was key in the staff’s selection of AlphaCorp as their solution provider. Other systems were complex, hard to use, and rigid in their application. “The issues we encountered during the phases of development, conversion, and installation would have become insurmountable except for the willingness of AlphaCorp to listen to our needs and respond to them,” said Joyce Goldsmith, Court Clerk.
AlphaCorp installed its own document imaging and management software called SIRE Solutions Suite. SIRE is a complete, enterprise-wide EDMS. It allows users to convert paper documents into electronic files. In this format, users can access and share information easily and remotely. SIRE operates in a standard Windows environment and with any ODBC accessible database such as SQL Server, Access, or Oracle.
The Results and Benefits
By implementing SIRE the staff achieved its primary goal of providing more efficient access to case files and court records. Referring to this accomplishment, Mohyeddin Abdulaziz, IT Manager for the Court, said, “Imaging, electronic filing, case management, and trial record from Superior Court are all integrated using AlphaCorp’s software. This means people in our court, other courts and agencies, and the public are able to look at all the documents for a case at once regardless of source, location, or time of day.”
AlphaCorp added several features to SIRE that are now invaluable resources to the Court. For example:
- Folder Packs—allow users to share case documents with each other and to export documents to CD-ROM or other media.
- Full-text Retrieval—lets users search across case documents for keywords and phrases.
- Bookmarks—lets users tag case documents for easier retrieval and management.
- Advanced Text View—allows users to copy and paste text from one document to another.
Because SIRE users share documents electronically, the staff at the Court significantly reduced costs of duplicating and transporting files. In addition, employees save valuable time and are more productive. They are able to search text across case documents and create portable case files. Individual and group specific security features control document sensitivity by restricting access entirely or by blocking out text. The Court now stores documents on magnetic disk which provides a reliable, long-term storage alternative.
- Easier access to case documents and court records
- Search text across case documents and court records using
- Full-text Retrieval View all documents at once regardless of source, location, or time of day
- Reduce or eliminate document duplication and accumulation
- Share information electronically
- Create portable case files
- Enhance security by blocking out text, or by restricting access to documents by individual or group
- Reduce physical-space requirements for case documents and court records
- Secure court data in a stable, long-term environment
- Save valuable employee time and budget dollars
- Increase productivity