Combat Stress are a small charity that were looking to digitise its archives of corporate information and photographs dating from 1919, all of which are of significant historical value.


The records were stored in the various types of boxes and cupboards which over a period of time accumulated into a large volume. Due to lack of space the boxes could not be organised so that the documents could be accessed easily by the users who needed access on frequent basis. The access to records such as paper, photographs, microfiche and drawings made it difficult to perform daily processes.

The collection included 26 standard archive boxes containing fifteen executive minute books, eleven leather bound books with hand-written double-sided pages and four loose leaf books with single sided pages. Some 2,500 photographs of various sizes with supporting metadata on the reverse, 400 plans and drawings plus legal documents and microfiche, from four national sites.

It was the intention of Combat Stress to catalogue the data with further reference access metadata before uploading to their website.


A solution was required where the documents could be accessed easily and securely. Combat Stress carried out a procurement process and invited several solution providers to overcome their challenges. Upon completion of their procurement process, Pearl Scan was chosen to deliver the required digitisation of their records and organised them in PDF files formats in such a way that is compatible with their website.

By working together with the client’s project team, Pearl Scan dedicated  a team of technical and logistical resources to provide the required solution in a way which was convenient for Combat Stress.

It was agreed that all records should be collected altogether to save cost and brought to Pearl Scan’s processing centre where the dedicated team will scan, capture and convert the records in accordance with the client’s specification.

Prior to embarking on the entire project, a small sample of the work was carried out to ensure that the final output meet the client’s requirements and if any changes were required these then are deployed at the setup stage.

Upon approval of the sample, the records were scanned using professional document scanners, specialist microfiche and photograph scanners and large format archive drawing scanners. The final images were output as Adobe PDF for web storage and access. The metadata was captured and catalogued to ensure easy identification of individual documents.

During the conversion process, any poor quality documents were further looked at for optimisation and enhancement to ensure legibility and long terms archival of the records.

Heritage Lottery funding was successfully applied for enabling the financing of the initial stage of their project which allowed Pearl Scan to scan, add metadata and apply optical character recognition to the images and deliver the digital archive consisting of:

All data was returned following the successful digitisation process.


By converting the hardcopy records to softcopy digital images the solution provided our client the following key benefits;

  1. Instant access and retrieval of documents from their website
  2. Organised and structured filing of historical documents
  3. Secure storage of valuable historical records

Pearl ensured that the project ran smoothly and accommodated over and above the original scope in documents to be scanned.  The quality of the finished scanning was good and delivered in a format that could be used.  The process was painless and delivered well by the development manager, with time well spent in the initial stages to understand formats and outputs.  I would highly recommend Pearl Scanning.


If your organisation is having similar challenges and you would like to speak to someone to see how they can help you contact us and we will happily answer your questions