ANAS S.p.A. works on large construction projects that involve huge amounts of information. To ensure rapid access to important files, the company wanted a smarter alternative to paper-based processes.
Speeds upprojects and approvals by accelerating access to relevant files
Boostsemployee productivity by promoting information sharing between departments
Adaptsto each department’s needs, avoiding the cost of re-designing business processes
Business challenge story
Complex paper trails
ANAS is responsible for building, maintaining and upgrading the extensive network of roads and motorways that keep Italy moving. Ensuring thousands of towns and cities stay connected over Italy’s challenging terrain demands constant maintenance work. In parallel, ANAS also drives projects to create new transport links between Italy’s more remote locations.
Maurizio Biccellari, Head of Management and Document Systems, ANAS, explains: “A lot of the things that make Italy such a beautiful country also make it extremely challenging from an engineering perspective. With so many rivers, valleys and mountainous regions, projects to build or repair roads require teams of engineers, architects and surveyors, as well as many different types of specialist suppliers.
ANAS’s construction and maintenance projects depend on a huge amount of data — from engineer’s plans and procurement contracts to management recording processes. To manage its engineering processes and a huge network of suppliers, the organization previously relied on manual, paper-based processes. However, this approach meant it was difficult to keep track of forms and files, especially on projects with multiple stakeholders and workstreams.
Biccellari continues: “To carry out their work, our staff and suppliers need to access engineering drawings and plans, acquisition documents, quality procedures, operating instructions, staff correspondence, and more. We currently have nearly 12 million documents archived on our systems, which our users might need to see at any time. If our personnel can’t access the information they need in a timely manner, it increases the risk of project delays, which have the potential to substantially increase our costs.”
Paving the way to specialized content management
To introduce higher levels of efficiency into its approach to content management, ANAS selected IBM Filenet Content Manager and IBM Business Automation Workflow.
Biccellari remarks: “We already relied on IBM solutions to store our 12 million documents, and our positive experiences working with IBM gave us the confidence that we’d receive the high-quality, responsive support we wanted.
Throughout the deployment process, the IBM team was supremely helpful, and their expertise enabled us to quickly deploy and customize the solution.”
After partnering with IBM to develop an engineering document management system to support the operations side of its business, ANAS decided to extend the solution to other parts of the organization. By deploying IBM Content Navigator , ANAS has enhanced its solution with an intuitive, user-friendly interface — enabling non-technical users to quickly find the information they need.
Today, the organization uses IBM Content Manager to augment many of its systems of record. These include its official record management system, P-ANAS. The solution is also integrated with its project document management (PDM) systems for engineering, construction and IT teams, as well as its procurement contract management (PCM) platform.
“The interface of Content Navigator is extremely easy to configure, which enables us to adapt it to the different needs of each department,” Biccellari explains: “For example, we heavily customized the user experience for our procurement department, enabling the team to continue to embrace the solution without changing their business processes.”
On the road to success
With a content management system powered by IBM solutions, ANAS has achieved its goal of streamlining its processes — saving time and helping to contain operational costs.
“Thanks to IBM Content Manager, we can exchange our engineering plans with the appropriate approval bodies at the touch of a button — eliminating the cost and complexity of shuffling paper back and forth,” Biccellari explains.
He adds, “The IBM solution is also helping us to accelerate our internal procurement process. In IT, we’ve significantly shortened the approval process, which helps us deploy innovative services for the business in a timely manner. Our employees love how easy the new solution is to use, and we’ve not received anything but positive feedback.”
Thanks to fine-grained access management capabilities, ANAS can ensure documents are accessible to people working in multiple departments when needed. For example, engineering documents are stored in the engineering document management system, but can be accessed via the procurement document management system during a tender process.
“The tight integration between our content management repositories enables us to support rapid and effective decision-making without compromising on our rigorous information security policies,” Biccellari says.
Based on the success of the solution, ANAS plans to use the case management capability within IBM Business Automation Workflow to streamline its accounts receivable and payable processes.
Biccellari concludes: “Driving our construction projects effectively is crucial to keep Italy moving. Thanks to our IBM content management solutions, we’re in a strong position to introduce even higher levels of efficiency into our operations.”
About ANAS S.p.A.
ANAS designs, builds and operates Italy’s national road network, managing over 30,000 km of roads and motorways. The company employs 6,000 people, including engineers, architects and surveyors. Headquartered in Rome, it has 38 offices around Italy.