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Melin Collectors increases efficiency and reduces manual effort through automation

Business Situation

Melin Collectors is growing. The Norway-based company provides its clients with a full range of billing and debt collection services, specialising primarily in the health services industry. The company’s collections process often included paper-based work, with physical documents that needed to be scanned or manually keyed into the system. Daily reporting was also done manually each morning, which took time and resources away from closing files and collecting fees.

As the company took on more client cases, it needed to hire additional staff to handle the resulting workload. Within 12 months, Melin Collectors jumped from eight employees handling documents and running daily reports to 24. To support its growth without having to add more headcount, the company wanted to automate several of its manual processes using intelligent robotic process automation (RPA). As it developed this strategy, leadership ensured that its people were fully engaged and understood that RPA was about augmenting their capabilities rather than reducing the company’s workforce.

"Consultants from Avanade came in and worked right next to our employees as part of the same team. While some consultants show up in suits and ties, Avanade blended in like they’d always been there. That made a huge difference."

Simen Hønsi COO, Melin Collectors

Solution

Melin Collectors partnered with Avanade to help automate 20 daily priority processes — including document input, management and data reporting — using Blue Prism, a market-leading RPA software hosted on the Microsoft Azure cloud platform. This solution ensures consistency and flexibility for the future. The software will allow the company to remain agile, with the ability to activate or deactivate automation for time-critical processes, ensuring resources are allocated wherever and whenever they are needed.

The solution was developed and implemented very quickly. After an 8-week pilot program, our team began rolling out RPA for active cases and chipping away at the company’s case backlog.

Results

Since the beginning of the project, RPA has been implemented on more than 80% of the identified processes. For these processes, Melin Collectors was able to reduce its backlog from tens of thousands of cases to zero only a month after deployment of the solution. To quantify the value-added efficiency of the Blue Prism software, the project has reduced manual effort for these processes by an estimated 53%, and 89% of the outstanding cases were completed with no human involvement at all.

Numbers aside, it’s a particular point of pride at Melin Collectors that the RPA solution operates alongside employees while preserving jobs. This isn’t a story about robots replacing the human workforce; rather, it’s a great example of how automating paper-based processes can enhance the employee experience and help workers complete tasks more efficiently so that they can fully support the needs of the business.

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