The Insolvency Service

Customer Success Stories

Integrated inventory lifts efficiency at lower cost

30 August 20188 mins
Iron Mountain logo with blue mountains

Integrated inventory lifts efficiency at lower cost


Public Sector


Rationalise procedures and suppliers to improve management of extensive paper archives


Single supplier for off-site archive management


  • Higher quality service with improved archiving, tracking and reporting
  • Instant reduction in storage costs with further savings anticipated
  • Excellent reliability and consistency of inventory management

The need to retain paper

Part of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, the Insolvency Service administers and provides guidance on personal and corporate insolvency. It is responsible for investigation and enforcement if misconduct is suspected. The agency also makes statutory redundancy payments if employers are unable to.

As well as extensive digital records, the Insolvency Service amasses large amounts of paperwork, much of it in books unsuitable for scanning. Those documents typically must be stored for six years, although some are retained for decades or even in perpetuity. About 85 per cent of the agency’s case load is handled by official receivers.

Moving to a single supplier

Until recently many functions were spread across different government departments, each with separate suppliers for off-site storage and archiving.

“It was impossible to reach an acceptable level of consistency,” explains Peter Hale, Senior Knowledge and Information Management Officer. “We needed to consolidate the holdings with a single supplier, so we could standardise procedures and systems and improve inventory control.”

When the archive contract for the official receivers came up for renewal the agency – now with 1,700 people in 21 locations throughout the UK – went a step further and took the opportunity to migrate all its archives to Iron Mountain®.

Smooth and easy archiving

Iron Mountain completed the migration on time, liaising with outgoing suppliers to arrange uplift and working closely with the Insolvency Service to resolve queries. On arrival boxes and their contents were registered via the Iron Mountain Connect™ online portal.

Nearly 88,000 boxes containing more than 126,000 files are now safely held by Iron Mountain. New documents for archiving are collected on demand from the agency’s nationwide office network at an a mean of 1,555 files and 950 boxes each month. An average of 1,670 boxes are retrieved from storage during the same period. Next-day collection is standard although different options are available.

“Our relationship with Iron Mountain couldn’t be better,” says Peter Hale. “It’s rare for issues to arise and they’re dealt with promptly. We’ve had little in the way of teething troubles and the whole process runs smoothly.”

Reliability and consistency of our inventory management have improved beyond recognition, while service costs are falling.

Peter Hale, Senior Knowledge and Information Management Officer, The Insolvency Service

Meaningful multipurpose reports

Iron Mountain provides detailed monthly invoices itemising all activity, while monthly management reports offer performance analysis against SLAs. Files retrieved from storage but not returned after six months are highlighted. The reports also list boxes due for destruction, so the agency can make timely decisions about whether to extend their retention dates. Iron Mountain arranges secure destruction once authorisation is given.

Insolvency Service employees have been trained to use the Iron Mountain Connect portal to amend inventory data, register new boxes and request collections or retrievals. “The Iron Mountain Connect portal is an excellent system that’s easy to use and very popular with our team,” says Peter Hale.

Continuing quality and efficiency gains

Working with one supplier has improved the quality and reliability of off-site records management. Through consistent procedures, Iron Mountain has made it easier for the agency to control its inventory and budget. Information is more accessible, bringing transparency and integrity to a once-fragmented process. Efficiency is increasing. Boxes used to be kept far beyond their destruction dates because busy employees didn’t receive timely reminders. Under the new regime the number of archived boxes has dropped from 120,000 to 88,000, reducing costs and streamlining access, including public Freedom of Information requests. Unit storage costs have fallen and, with the entire archive united and re-catalogued, further savings are anticipated.

The precision and clarity of Iron Mountain reports are greatly appreciated and allow the Insolvency Service to obtain information direct from the Iron Mountain Connect portal at any time without cost. Peter Hale concludes: “The reliability and consistency of our inventory management have improved beyond recognition, while service costs are falling. We’ve got more time to focus on the bigger picture and are better able to fulfil our front-line responsibilities.”

Elevate the power of your work

Get a FREE consultation today!

Get Started