Company: PennEngineering

Founded in 1942, PennEngineering is a $600 million global leader in fastening solutions. The companies provide fastener and fastener installation design and product solutions worldwide for diverse industries including electronics, computer, data/telecom, medical, automotive, marine, aerospace/aircraft, and general manufacturing.

Challenge: Simplify Raw Material Certification Tracking

PennEngineering services many market segments which require specific documentation that tracks each raw material to its origin in order to be compliant.

In the past, when raw material arrived at the PennEngineering manufacturing facility, the certification paperwork accompanying the  raw material was forwarded to the Quality department. Quality would then photocopy and file them in different folders.  This provided the necessary departments access to the paperwork.

When Shipping was about to ship an order that required a raw material certificate, they had to call the Quality department, then wait for them to find, photocopy and walk the documents to the dock before the shipment could proceed. This process was very cumbersome and time consuming.

In addition, if there was an inquiry years later regarding raw material for a specific part in a specific order, a fair amount of interaction was required between Customer Service, Quality and the customer to make sure the proper information was provided

The Solution: OnBase by Hyland

PennEngineering decided it was time to expand the existing OnBase enterprise content management system to streamline the raw material certification tracking process.  The company selected Paperless Solutions to design the new system given the outstanding job they had done previously when implementing an automated quoting system.

“We knew from past experience that Paperless Solution would be able to look at the big picture to design exactly the right solution for us,” stated Adam Phillipps, Director of Global Information Systems.

After speaking with the people involved who understood the problem, the business processes and the culture of the departments, Paperless Solutions had the ingenuity to combine OnBase capabilities with a kiosk. The solution was elegantly simple.

When raw material arrives in Receiving, the ERP system produces a lot barcode number that gets placed onto the raw material certification papers and scanned directly into the OnBase System. As raw material is issued to work orders in the ERP system, the system tracks the lot barcode. A click on the lot number in the ERP system immediately brings up the raw material certification.

Today when Shipping packages an order that requires a raw material certificate, they go to a self-service kiosk, scan the work order number, click on the lot number, and print out the certification documents right there. What normally took 15-45 minutes, is now done in a matter of seconds. Shipping does not have to wait and there is no need to interrupt Quality personnel multiple times a day!

The Return on Investment

Time savings: The time savings are substantial. Quality does not need to spend time looking for certificates and then walking them down to Shipping.   In addition, our Engineering department now has immediate access to the information they need without having to wait for additional photocopying and/or delivery by Quality which saves them additional time and effort tracking paperwork.. Critical departments have access to the same information in one convenient accessible repository.

Faster shipments: Shipments are no longer delayed while waiting for the appropriate documentation to be delivered.

More compliant: Because the process is automated the accuracy of raw material certificates is much higher now that human error has virtually been eliminated, which means our customers benefit from the tighter controls.

Future Plans: Expand Globally and New Applications

The system has been so successful that PennEngineering is now planning to expand it globally. Many times a week they get calls into Customer Service for raw material certifications. To reduce these calls, the plan is to build a self-serve solution on a distributor portal that can be accessed automatically online from any global location. This will be another huge time saver for customer service.

Plans for expansion of the PennEngineering ECM system go even further. “Next we will streamline our internal billing process,” added Phillipps. “It’s a complex project as we need to comply with regulations that vary in every country. And we’ve elected to work with Paperless Solutions once again.”

About Paperless Solutions

Trusted experts in enterprise content management since 1999, Paperless Solutions specializes in industries with complex processes and stringent compliance requirements. State and local government, Prothonotaries, manufacturers, laboratories and collections agencies rely on us to simplify their processes, decrease costs and keep their business compliant. We skillfully combine best-in-breed off-the-shelf ECM solutions from Hyland OnBase and FileBound with our own software to deliver the right workflows from finance to human resources, court case management, e-Filing, sample test reporting and collections correspondence. Recognized for our outstanding customer service, Paperless Solutions is a repeat winner of the Hyland OnBase Diamond Award. www.paperlessus.com

“We’d worked with Paperless Solutions before and knew that they had the inventiveness and knowledge to design an ECM solution that would efficiently solve our problem.

We also knew that they could understand our business and culture so that the solution would actually be used by our people!”

Adam Phillipps
Director of Global Information Systems

Document management for manufacturing

Software provided by Paperless Solutions Inc.

  • OnBase Content Management System


  • Raw material certification tracking


  • Raw Material documents are captured on the receiving floor at time or receipt
  • Documents can be retrieved with a simple mouse-click from JD Edwards system
  • Shipping can retrieve product documents from kiosks on Shipping floor


  • One-step access to documents from native JD Edwards application
  • Saves time on Shipping floor by providing self-service
  • Accurate documents for Customer Service at all points in the process

Departments Using OnBase

  • Sales
  • Customer service
  • Receiving
  • Accounting and Finance
  • Quality Assurance