Didlake Document Imaging: Another Way That Didlake Creates Opportunities for People with Disabilities

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By Amy Falkofske

Sponsored by Didlake Document Imaging

For over 20 years, Didlake has been involved in file conversion, tracing its roots back to microfilm. Over the decades that experience has moved into digital conversion services for federal and state customers. In October 2019, Didlake expanded that service to businesses through Didlake Document Imaging, a division of Didlake, Inc. Like the two The UPS Stores Didlake owns and operates, Didlake Document Imaging employs people with disabilities.

“We’re leveraging our 20-plus years of federal government contracting experience, coupled with the subject matter expertise we had in the line of business and extended that out into document imaging services …[We] then realized document imaging was a line of business that, unlike some of our other traditional lines of business, we could extend out to any individual, any business, or any local, state or federal government. It’s a service for anyone who needs or wants to digitize paper,” said Valeri Spencer, Didlake’s Director of Business Development.

Didlake Document Imaging also does photo imaging to preserve your precious keepsakes.

Opportunities for People with Autism

Although Didlake Document Imaging is open to anyone with disabilities, it’s especially good for people on the autism spectrum.

“Scanning provides people with disabilities an opportunity to learn new technical skills. There’s a lot of repetition and consistency in the work, and our employees tell us it’s a job they really enjoy,” said Steve Furhman, Didlake’s Business Manager.

Didlake Imaging recently completed work on a contract for the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), converting the Department’s Division of Credit Assurance microfiche records to digital PDFs. Didlake’s Vice President of Corporate Communications & Marketing, Erika Spalding, said the contract with DHCD is a good example of how document imaging is a good fit for people with autism.

“People with neurodiversity, including autism, can be very successful at document scanning, and scanning is a lot more than just literally putting a document into a machine to have it scanned. It’s complex, it’s detail-driven and really can be a great way to employ people on the spectrum and people with neurodiversity,” she said.

A Nice, Secure Location

You might think that a document imaging service would be located in a warehouse, but Didlake Document Imaging is located in an office park at 8472 Kao Circle in Manassas.

“This is a nice office park. In the front section of our facility is our work area. In the back section is our secure warehouse. So everything stays put in one area, and then we’re surrounded by Prince William County fire and rescue, the police department and the like, so it’s a very secure, comfortable place for people to come visit. It feels like you’re walking into a regular office,” said Spencer.

Didlake’s Document Imaging office is open by appointment only.

The Benefits of Document Imaging

In the midst of the global pandemic, document imaging offers a solution for remote working.

“[Document imaging] supports people working remotely and is really timely right now. It’s all about access. It’s all about allowing access to your documents from wherever you are, and the dissemination of that information,” said Spencer.

It’s also important to have digital copies of your business records in case of a natural disaster, such flooding from storms.

“It gives customers the opportunity that have a lot of paper in their office that they want to reduce and digitize to protect it from a possible pipe burst in their building or a fire, or some sort of natural disaster, where they might lose all their documents,” said Furhman.

Didlake uses Microsoft Azure to store scanned documents to the cloud, which has duplication in multiple data centers across the country, “so if there’s a natural disaster here on the East Coast, we’ve got you covered on the West Coast,” said Spencer.

Many businesses, such as Didlake’s The UPS Stores, have records retention requirements, meaning they are required to keep documents for a certain amount of time. Instead of storing boxes and boxes of documents, you can have them digitized. Didlake will keep your original documents at their secure office location, or have them securely shredded while a senior level staff member supervises after they have been scanned.

Didlake also uses Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology where every word of your document is indexed and searchable.

Supporting Prince William County

Didlake Document Imaging gives opportunities to people with disabilities in the Greater Prince William County area, especially because it operates locally. Whereas a government contract might require an employee to travel outside of Greater Prince William, Didlake’s Document Imaging gives employees the opportunity to stay local.

“This gives people an additional opportunity to do similar [to government contracts]high caliber work with good wages, but right here in the Greater Prince William area. So we wanted to invest in space and employment here in the City of Manassas, and document imaging allowed us to do that,” said Spencer.

Didlake’s Document Imaging was nominated for the Prince William Chamber of Commerce’s Tech Company of the Year Award in 2020, and Didlake, its parent company, received the City of Manassas Business of the Year award for 2020.

Didlake Document Imaging isn’t just for businesses. They serve anyone who has document imaging needs. No job is too small. For a free quote, visit Didlake Document Imaging’s website.



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