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Case Study, Utilities

Water Plus: How enhanced payment allocation and processing improved customer journeys

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48%

Suspense account reduction

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1.4m

Items processed

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95%

Payments allocated on day 1

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840K

BACS payment

Background

Water Plus were looking for a new partner to deliver a cash and payment processing management service that would also help improve efficiency around customer transactions. The cash management solution required had to deliver customer SLAs and transform the service to deliver operational efficiencies through API automation.

Before approaching Parseq, Water Plus’s service required an increase of thought leadership on their existing strategies of managing customer payments. Parseq were tasked in transferring the service in its current state, managing the project while also establishing new process maps. The number one priority from Water Plus was to ensure a smooth transition of the service without an impact to their customers and to ensure that there were no challenges when unlocking cashflow.

The challenge

To increase the efficiency of the existing processes, Parseq applied expert knowledge and resource to the reduction of their suspense account. The service was manually driven and relied on printing of remit attachments from email to allocate customer payments. The ideation behind the solution was to increase visibility on managing customer payments through strategic solutions that would complement Water Plus’s business strategy.


We had to manage the project during COVID 19 which resulted in hosting digital customer relationship management, whereas previously, we would visit client sites to look at the process and complete workshops.

Customer payments are assigned to the suspense file in the absence of a remittance, account number or other relevant information, which is required to allocate the customer payment to the correct account. Water Plus had taken steps to highlight core information needed from customers to allocate payments sent in, though wanted to improve efficiency and reduce any areas that may see delays for customers. Parseq now has an approach to obtain the information required from
the customer and allocate the payment accordingly.

The solution

To define our strategic delivery, Parseq undertook a fact-finding initiative within Water Plus to understand current challenges and appetite for the future. We completed workshops to understand the current service by adding a team of specialists from Water Plus and Parseq (developers, operations, solutions and projects) to support the
fact finding. All the requirements were gathered through a functional requirement specification (FRS) to ensure Parseq and Water Plus had a documented process in place that can be reviewed by both parties.

Parseq deployed an intelligent system utilising multiple data sources and analytics from customer behaviour to allocate payments into customer accounts and at invoice level. In addition to improving the customer journey, Parseq built a payment journey user interface to detail current payment status and allocation by utilising historic data sources. Parseq improved the service from manual reliance to automation, which led to increased efficiencies within the service. This also led to an increase in payment matching on day one.

Together we were able to identify technical challenges. These were discussed on a weekly basis with the technical teams from Water Plus and Parseq to ensure we delivered our commitment to a continuous improvement service through the life-time of the contract, complementing Water Plus’s continuous improvement approach.

Successes
  • Reduction of the suspense by 48% within 6 months of being live
  • Reduction of legacy suspense by 60%
  • 90% of processes implemented and documented to reduce risk of reliance on single point of failure
  • 100% SLA delivery on transactional service
  • Increased allocation of payments from current service of 40% to 95% on day one
  • Partner led relationship with mutual support to deliver continued success during service transition
  • Client visibility with detailed reports and status updates on cash allocation
  • ADIR solution provided visibility on images for cheques and remittances 24/7
 

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