Basin Electric Power Cooperative
Driving collaboration and supporting multi-million document migration

 

Challenge:
Evolving document management processes for continued efficiency gains
Basin Electric Power Cooperative (Basin Electric) is a consumer-owned, not-for-profit generator and transmitter of wholesale bulk electric power to a network of rural electric cooperatives across nine American states. Serving three million consumers, the organisation has a diverse energy portfolio spanning coal, gas, and renewable energy, including wind power.

Efficient document management is pivotal to the smooth running of Basin Electric’s daily activities. Therefore, when the organisation’s previous supplier announced plans to discontinue support of its current system, the team were keen to find an alternative solution that could flex to its needs as an AutoCAD-based business.

As Basin Electric operates facilities in multiple states, the new solution also had to be highly configurable to accommodate the different numbering systems and work processes that existed across the Group.

“The time saving is huge. We can generate drawings and process them a lot quicker compared to standing by a printer and duplicating them manually. Our review process is also swifter, projects stay on schedule and submittals can be handled electronically.”

Clint Wald
Senior Engineering Document Specialist,
Basin Electric Power Cooperative

Solution:
Partnering with Idox for secure, flexible and collaborative document sharing
Following a competitive tender, Basin Electric evaluated different providers and selected Idox as its supplier of. The system went live in March 2018. As well as delivering a secure, flexible document management system for all project information, the Idox solution provides an easier way to share files across the team – irrespective of the native file format. This ensures all colleagues have quick access to the latest version of a drawing, streamlining communication and driving collaboration.

Idox also worked with the team to configure a solution that suited individual document lifecycles and workflows, with access controls configurable to ensure the privacy of certain documentation.

Clint Wald, Senior Engineering Document Specialist at Basin Electric Power Cooperative notes: “As a cooperative, our document management processes have evolved – from starting with flat file drawings to now using a more robust system that secures the millions of documents we have.

“Our goal was to make everything available online so the team could swiftly locate drawings. With the Idox system in place, engineers can view all our submittals from a central repository and we’re able to grant simultaneous access to multiple authorised users, irrespective of their location.”

Outcome:
Successful migration of millions of documents and significant time savings
The Idox solution effectively supported the transfer of more than one million documents, of which approximately 500,000 are active and in use. By implementing a comprehensive document management system, Basin Electric can remain confident that they are all working from the most up-to-date version of a file, delivering safety and savings from improved accuracy, easier collaboration and reduced errors. Each facility has also been able to retain their workflows, ensuring document integrity with minimal disruption. Clint said: “The time saving is huge. We can generate drawings and process them a lot quicker compared to standing by a printer and duplicating them manually. Our review process is also swifter, projects stay on schedule and submittals can be handled electronically.

“When we work on projects, we get many calls to help locate drawings. Now, we can have an image for them in minutes – having a quick system is so valuable and knowing the exact status of a document at any one time is really important.”

Previously, documents were stored locally meaning team members were ‘locked out’ of files when they were being edited by someone else. The Idox solution overcomes this challenge by granting concurrent access to ensure business continuity.

As every project uses a different way of transmitting data to reviewers, Basin Electric is already considering how it can evolve the system further, with plans in place to take advantage of new product releases for additional web browser and platform support.