COLD Technology Requirements Evaluation

As a consultant for Work Smart, Inc., I performed a technology evaluation for a major health insurance company. Computer Output to Laser Disk (COLD) is a technology by which computer generated reports and documents (such as accounting reports and in-house generated invoices) are stored electronically. In 1993, the insurance company implemented a COLD system using an Optical Disk (OD) solution to replace their Computer Output to Microfilm (COM) operation. The purpose of the OD was to store coded data that, for whatever reason, must be retained for extended periods of time and referenced from time-to-time. OD was chosen based on the merits that it can cost effectively store large amounts of data that can be accessed on-line in a matter of seconds.

At the time of my evaluation, in 1998, the requirement to access data on-line in a matter of seconds has not changed. If anything, it has become even more important in order to stay both cost and service competitive. Unfortunately, the current system has not kept pace with the high demand for data retrieval.

I conducted an evaluation and reported on the following:

  • Summary of Findings: data retrieval time, form access and display, printing and faxing, search/query capability
  • Management Input: concerns, issues, requirements, vendors
  • Benefits and Costs Savings
  • Vendor/System Selection/Test Criteria
  • Requirements
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