The supporting cast for the 785 elected members of the European Parliament (EP) - representing 492 million citizens of the 27 member states of the European Union — is almost a nation unto itself. It took some creative thinking on the part of Adlib to design and run a document workflow to support the work of the dozens of committees where most of the business conducted by European lawmakers happens.
As many as 1,500 documents can be in play in the course of a legislative sitting, to be made available in 22 languages, prepared by more than 700 translators and 170 “lawyer-linguists” and often required to be ready within two days of the committee meeting.
When Paulo Larisch, software developer and systems analyst for the EP, went looking for a replacement of their homegrown document management systems, he was focusing on reliability, flexibility and robustness. “Only Adlib could meet our demands,” he said.
Powerful XML Job Tickets were the Deal Maker
Working with his partners at Adlib, Mr. Larisch deployed a complete document conversion and publishing solution running on six servers. “Adlib’s job ticket technology was the key for me,” Mr. Larisch says “It means that as long as my scripts are written properly, my documents are always processed correctly.”
XML job tickets (customized electronic scripts with processing instructions for the production of a document) perform the following functions for the EP:
- Automatically watermark the language
- Create footers with dynamic page numbering, filenames and version codes
- automatically direct the print servers to create perfect hard copies that adhere to EP pagination and binding standards
“I began my career in the print industry so I know how easily errors can be made in the process and not be corrected in time,” Mr. Larisch said. “For the committees, there is too much at stake for those kinds of mistakes. Adlib eliminates that risk for us.”
The European parliamentarians’ experience with Adlib has already had a number of unforeseen benefits, such as when foreign delegations need to support the document needs of a developing nation. Adlib is so flexible that delegates can simply add a few scripts to an Adlib installation on a laptop and bring their workflows with them. “It removes a lot of the headaches you get when you are away from your headquarters,” said Larisch, “and lets the delegation focus on the important diplomatic work they are doing.”
We find it very gratifying at Adlib to be able to help organizations around with the world with such important work.