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School simplifies document processing to improve management efficiency ready for new academic structure and curriculum

The introduction of the "334" New Academic Structure and Curriculum will see the progressive implementation of school-based assessments, and the need to archive student academic records, examination scripts and relevant assignments will undoubtedly increase the workload of teaching staff. SKH Lam Woo Memorial Secondary School takes advantage of advanced office equipment and document management solutions to simplify what used to be complicated administrative work and boost administrative efficiency for teachers and the school.

Effective management of student records

As a result of the school-based assessment component in the new academic structure and curriculum, it has become critical for secondary schools to effectively manage student records in order to facilitate total educational development. Yet given the huge amount of student information that needs to be archived, it is a challenge to manage resources effectively? According to Mr Mak Cheuk-sang, Vice-Principle of SKH Lam Woo Memorial Secondary School, it used to be an arduous task storing every exam paper as well as student academic results and assignments in systematic, digital format.

'In the past, it took a lot of time and manpower to sort and store the huge amount of student information. And it wasn't always easy to pull out certain information from the archive,' says Mr Mak. With the help of document management solutions by Ricoh's multi-function copiers, every student is assigned a bar code - their academic results and assignments can then be stored in their personal profile. The teaching staff can quickly and conveniently access the information at a later date, giving them a comprehensive picture of the student’s performance and progress.

Meanwhile, the school used to store information in hard copies, which took up a significant amount of space. Switching to electronic storage not only offers exceptional convenience but also frees up space for other use.

Text Recognizer facilitates easy preparation of teaching materials

Document conversion software "Text Recognizer" has significantly eased teachers' workload in preparing teaching materials. According to Mr Mak, 'teachers of Chinese, English and Liberal Studies can have the multi-function copier scan newspaper contents, which are then converted to editable electronic file formats (e.g. Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel or Adobe PDF). The conversion retains the design and layout of the source document and this has helped teachers immensely in terms of teaching material preparation.' Text Recognizer software supports Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese and English fonts, and the system automatically converts scans into editable computer files.

Multi-function copiers save manpower and boost efficiency

Technological advancement has helped drive the development of office equipment: from black and white to color output, followed by the emergence of multi-function machines. These improvements help schools and teachers increase efficiency. A few years ago the school started using high-speed multi-function copiers for network printing, and document management efficiency has since been improved by almost 100%.

'We used to spend two days printing student academic reports, but we can now finish the task in one day. In terms of printing and copying costs, we have achieved savings of at least 70% on B/W and colour copying costs,' Mr Mak goes on to say that the relatively high costs for colour copying in the past had somehow limited the use of color copies, but now colour copying has become much more affordable, and teachers and students can even print A3 posters and certificates.

At the same time, the Ricoh copier in the school library which supports payment by Octopus Card, provides copying service to students at cost.

Replacing the mimeograph machine with multi-function copiers brings added convenience

Apart from multi-function copiers, the school is equipped with two Ricoh high speed multi-function copier. Mr Cheng Woon-tak, who teaches Information and Computer Technology at the school, explains that printing examination scripts with the mimeograph machine is a fairly complicated process and requires much manpower. 'The high speed multi-function copiers we have now are equipped with sorting and binding functions, which are extremely helpful for teachers who frequently prepare teaching notes.' For example, two pages of A4 content can be copied on one piece of A3 paper, and if we use two-sided copying, four pages of content can be copied all at once. Our staff no longer has to spend time binding the documents and this also minimizes the risk of human error.'

User-oriented service

Currently the school has six multi-function copiers, placed in the general office, teachers' room and school library respectively. These have replaced about 20 ink jet and laser jet printers the school used to have, freeing up space and consolidating management. According to Mr Cheng, when the toners are due to be replaced, the multi-function printers will issue a reminder message. The school only has to make one phone call and Ricoh would send qualified technicians to replace the toners in one to two days. There is no need for procurement and stocking of supplies. The same telephone hotline also takes care of other customer needs, such as repair, enquiry or complaint.

'Since most copiers or printers are all-in-one machines, malfunction can mean huge inconvenience and greatly affect our work. Ricoh's "2-hour service pledge" for on-site repair services thoughtfully takes care of user needs.'

At present, Ricoh operates sixe Repair Centers on Hong Kong Island, in Kowloon and the New Territories. On average, technicians will arrive at the site within 2 hours of repair order and their first response is greatly appreciated by their customers.


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