Finding information quickly via searchable PDF files
may be the most important aspect of a paperless office. Space
savings and reducing paper use are the benefits that come to mind with
digital filing systems. Once your paperless office is in place, you
will not be able to live without searching your files at work or at home the way Google
searches the Internet.
The best way to make
PDF files searchable is to build in that feature when you create the PDF
files. You need to use OCR (optical character recognition) software
to create searchable PDF files. Acrobat Standard or Acrobat
Professional can create searchable PDF files. Also, FineReader or
OmniPage can create searchable PDF files.
There is a simple test to see if the PDF file is
searchable. (1) Open the file up in Acrobat. (2) Search (Control -
F) for one of the words that you see in the Acrobat window. If
Acrobat finds the word, it is searchable.
If you already have lots of non-searchable PDF
files, contact us at 1-800-326-6686. We can give you a quote
on turning non-searchable PDF files into searchable PDF (or OCR files).
Once you have searchable PDF files, you can use
search programs like X1 Search or
Google Desktop Search to search
your computer or your network the way Google searches the Web.
Case Studies Searching PDF Files
We were given a project to find why $437,000 was
missing from a trust. The person who created the trust also had 2
other trusts. We found the distributions out of the trust.
Then we searched for those amounts in the broker statements of the other
trusts. Within minutes we found where the missing assets went.
If we were dealing with paper, this would have taken days!
Medical Double Billing
The owner of Denver Tax Software had knee surgery in
2003. All of his medical records were scanned into searchable PDF
files as they were created.
In 2006, one of his medical providers said that
about $200 for a knee brace was never paid. He searched for the name
of the provider and the exact dollar amount. Within seconds, he
located the record that showed that the knee brace was paid for in 2003.
The knee brace provider was notified with an email that included a copy of
the 2003 payment record. Case closed!
Incorrect Colorado Tax Due Notice
In 2007 a tax client gets a notice than an incorrect
amount was reported on the 2003 tax return. The tax return was a
searchable PDF file. The tax return file was searched for that
"incorrect amount". The search found that amount in a statement that
described why that amount was, in fact, correct. That statement was
then sent to the Colorado Department of Revenue to resolve the problem in
favor of the taxpayer.