Successfully Automating Arrears Letters
Our client, PA Housing, a registered provider of social housing with 23,000 properties across the Midlands and South East, have been investigating how they can deploy automation and digital transformation to their business process. The Income Team engaged with Integrity Connect to review the way Arrears letters were being produced, as these low volume mailings were taking up a disproportionate amount of staff time to produce. The challenges presented by the COVID-19 lockdown, with increasing numbers of staff having to work remotely, was exacerbating the problem. Staff productivity was adversely affected and there was an urgent requirement to simplify a complex workflow.
The Integrity Connect Solution
Integrity Connect were able to scope and develop an automated document workflow using our Quadient Automation software tools. The process involved taking raw data from PA Housing, which included outputs from 70 local authority data streams, and then scripting a workflow that reformatted the data according to a number of pre-agreed business rules.
PA Housing were able to specify selective letter texts and graphics within the workflow so that it was now easy to brand letters by originating teams - improving tenant engagement. Project Manager Dominic Rollings commented: “working with Integrity Connect we were able to re-design everything from scratch and make our communications more customer-focused”.
With a clear brief from the Project Team at PA Housing, Integrity Connect were able to develop, test and deliver the new automated workflow for Arrears letters within a week of the initial project meeting. Letter files are uploaded throughout the day to Cerberus, the Connect secure file transfer site, with an agreed cut off time of 14.40pm. At 14.50pm a complete set of PDFs of each letter is ready for PA Housing to collect from the SFTP and load into their own Documotive EDM. The PDF files are also ingested into our Clarity Mail system to ensure they are printed and mailed out same day.
20+ hours saved every week
Improved tenant engagement
Solution integrates with home working
STAFF TIME Although the initial workflow solution only manages around 250 letters each week the project has delivered a measurable process improvement with an estimated saving of 20 hours every week. Housing officers now have more time to focus on value added tasks and see the project as a way of improving their GDPR compliance, as letters are no longer produced with manual intervention.
“Working with Integrity has really opened our eyes to just how much opportunity there is to improve our document workflows and to improve the customer experience. We are now looking at bringing additional letter streams into scope as we can see the significant benefits of automation. I would strongly recommend my peers to engage with Integrity Connect to deliver significant process improvement. “
Katherine Hiscock, Income Services and Analytics Manager at PA Housing
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