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Paul Mitchell Ohio Schools: 3x Faster Information Retrieval


Company: Paul Mitchell Schools of Columbus, OH
Industry: Education (Post-secondary private school sector)
Location: Cleveland and Columbus, OH

The Challenge

Storing, managing, and accessing thousands of student records to comply with accreditation requirements.

The Solution

ECM Cloud Solution

The Results


Reduction in office supplies


Faster student information retrieval time

Improved Compliance

with nation accreditation regulations

Implementing an ECM Cloud Solution to Streamline Document Management with VRC


The Paul Mitchell Schools are dedicated to elevating the perception of careers in the beauty industry. In 1980, Paul Mitchell was founded by John Paul DeJoria and Paul Mitchell with just $700. With over 30 years of experience, the brand currently networks over 100,000 salons worldwide. Additionally, the cosmetology school division of Paul Mitchell continues to grow, with the Cleveland and Columbus schools named 2 of the top 100 renowned schools worldwide. Each year their nonprofit program awards over $1 million in scholarships. With their Ohio schools contributing to over 10,000+ graduates annually, their team required an organized and modern approach to document management. 

Traditionally, their digital files were stored and manually managed on hundreds of CDs loaded to an internal server. But, with the ongoing demand to comply with accreditation requirements, the team wanted to simplify this process. They were already scanning the Paul Mitchell Ohio school’s records, including interview forms, evaluations, assignments, transcripts, and more, which could quickly amount to 75-150 pages per student file. However, they lacked the tools to efficiently organize and access thousands of records. 

In 2018, Tammy Marinis, Director of Compliance at the Paul Mitchell School in Cleveland, found VRC and worked with their ECM partner, Digitech, to address these challenges and streamline their student records management system.

The Challenge

Marinis knew their current folder-based approach to organizing vast digital student files, including enrollment records ranging from education to financial aid information, wasn’t working. Her team needed a faster, more efficient way to reach their digital transformation goals. Files were scanned annually and delivered on CDs for loading onto an internal server. This inefficient digitization method continued for about 3-5 years.

“Student information was being saved in hundreds of folders on an internal server with no rhyme or reason to indexing,” said Marinis. 

Not only was their existing document management time-consuming, but it also lacked security and compliance. As a school system, Paul Mitchell’s cosmetology program is legally responsible for protecting personally identifiable information (PII). It must comply with the US Department of Education’s regulations, which require lifetime student record storage. Additionally, the schools must comply with the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts & Sciences  (NACCAS), the Ohio State Beauty, and the Barber Board. Although Paul Mitchell’s Ohio schools maintained compliance, their digital system wasn’t robust enough to meet their growing needs. 

Marinis saw that ECM software could help them round out the document management strategy they were trying to implement by giving them the tools they needed to find, access, and share their information in a secure, compliant manner. 

Further, VRC’s methodology to going digital immediately struck a chord with Marinis as she felt it could be the start of all Paul Mitchell’s schools’ journeys to digital transformation. 

The Solution

VRC recommended Digitech’s cloud enterprise content management software, ImagoSilo, that streamlined the filing of student information. ImageSilo was implemented in February 2018, turning a once time-consuming data migration from CD files into an instant cloud solution. 

Previously, the retrieval process required Marinis to spend countless hours searching and accessing student files up to 5 times each quarter. This involved locating the correct CD, inserting the desk on her computer, and manually searching for the student information.  

“We were up and running with ImageSilo immediately,” said Marinis. “Training happened so quickly—it only took two hours because it was so simple!” ImageSilo enabled Marinis and her team to quickly adopt a new system storing all files on remote servers, reducing retrieval times from 2-3 hours to 2-3 seconds. At first, there was 15-20GB in backfile storage on ImageSilo, and now there is 25GB of stored documents. Today, both Cleveland and Columbus Paul Mitchell Cosmetology schools’ content is managed on ImageSilo.

ImageSilo and our relationship with Vital Records Control is something that I feel so confident in—I’ve recommended them to Paul Mitchell corporate. I feel like we’re on to something that could help many schools getting ready to go digital.

Tammy Marinis, Director of Compliance Paul Mitchell School of Cosmetology Cleveland

The Results

Applying ImageSilo helped the Paul Mitchell team improve efficiency and compliance across the Ohio schools. Rather than Marinis searching through stacks of disks, the schools can quickly find the information themselves and send it to requesters. And communication and compliance with government and national accreditation agencies have improved with simple and easy file sharing. “I feel confident that we can meet any requirement,” said Marinis. “If an accreditation agency requests 150 records at once, I can find and send only one file to comply within seconds.” 

ImageSilo has also saved Paul Mitchell Ohio schools records management costs. “From the beginning, we started to experience savings in paper and filing costs as everything was printed before. Six months from now, we’ll see office supplies drop 10%.” Despite the benefits of cost savings and enhanced efficiency, Marinis’ is most complimentary of the relationship she built with VRC and Digitech Systems. “They are knowledgeable, accommodating, friendly, and never lack in response or fail to provide information on what’s available,” concludes Marinis. “Any organization in the post-secondary private school sector, whether cosmetology, culinary, transportation, etc., are all linked to the US Department of Education through funding and enrollment agreement processes. We can all benefit from ImageSilo’s efficiency, accessibility, and profitability.” 

About Vital Records Control

Founded in 1988, VRC Companies, LLC (Vital Records Control) is a trusted leader in records and information management services. VRC helps businesses manage and govern their physical and digital information assets to reduce costs, mitigate risk, and improve productivity. VRC’s suite of scalable solutions enables seamless information lifecycle management – offsite records storage, content management services, document scanning services, and secure shredding. Find more information about VRC at

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