Converga helped Canon New Zealand offload manual tasks with a focus on instant response to client sales & service requests
“It’s moved our team from the laborious task of keystrokes to creating real value for our customers”Peri Siatras. Head of Business Transformation, Canon New Zealand
Canon New Zealand Sales and Support Operations has automated 5 of 10 manual repetitive processes, that interacted across four systems and nine different spreadsheets of data. The automation has freed the team up from repetitive manual tasks like logging service calls, that would take 10-15mins – a task the robot now completes in 3-4 mins. The RPA program has streamlined these processes, removing errors, increasing speed and improving quality of service as a result of the additional time the team can now spend solving customer needs.
• 97% of processes completed without manual intervention. (One process already boosted to 100%)
• Automatic invoicing and INSTANT sales & service response
• Staff now free to create real customer value
Canon New Zealand’s Peri Siatras, Head of Business Transformation and Janice Lamb, National Sales and Service Support Manager tell us how the outcomes were achieved.
Peri: Canon’s printing business is B2B and B2C. We sell photocopiers, consumables, software and collaboration gear via a direct sales team and a direct channel to our partners. My role as Head of Transformation is to look at ways we can make the business more efficient – and one of the ways we can do that is to take manual processes to digital ones wherever possible. The first area we looked at was the Service Delivery Team, the people who key orders and send out service technicians. Any improvement would benefit our customers so we were looking to attain faster, more efficient transactions. It would also free up the service teams to be more proactive in servicing our customers.
Janice: If we could speed up the processes of service calls, consumables orders and invoicing, it would be of huge benefit to both our customers and our teams. Our teams would be free to create more capacity and get away from the boring, repetitive tasks and create real value for our customers.
Peri: RPA was then a relatively new concept. We needed to get a deep understanding of what it could and couldn’t do. We chose Converga because they had the technology, the resources, the platforms and the expertise. Converga provided us with Excel-based ROI so we could understand the process, the number of steps, the performance and any variations. From this information an indication of time and savings was given to us. Once we identified the processes, we decided which ones would have the most impact. The first process chosen was client requests for service technicians. Whenever there was an issue with a photocopier, the client had to call us and request a call out. We observed the way our team handled this and created a Process Document that detailed the flow. Converga then developed a robot that was tested in the environment. There were a couple of things we needed to tweak, but once it proved itself in the testing environment, we rolled it out into production.
Janice: Everything was done in stages and tested prior to going live. The Converga team were great and there were no disruptions to daily tasks.
Peri: We saw how successful it was by measuring how many tickets it lodged. We looked at the exceptions and tweaked it even more so now we know the process is functioning as it should. The pre-testing was the same for every process we looked to automate, and every roll-out produced the same success. We’re currently replacing manual inputting with RPA at around one process per month.
Janice: For my team of 15 in sales and service we now have three fully automated processes: Automation of customer service calls, consumables ordering and invoicing. We’re also working on a bot to automatically process customer rebates. It’s all positive from the client end because the processes are now faster and more efficient. As soon as a client’s request hits the inbox, it is actioned straight away with no delay whatsoever. My team are happy to know they’re not stressing about how many emails they have waiting to be actioned. The only impact on both my customers and team has been positive.
Janice: The robots currently have a success rate of close to 100%. There were exceptions – not with the robotic process – but other issues that popped up. Last month it was running at 97% and the new process we’ve just completed is at 100%.
Peri: For the customer it means a faster transaction and its way more efficient. They can fill out a form online and get an instant reply saying, “Your order has been requested”. They don’t have to wait on the phone, so it’s a faster, more efficient customer experience. It’s moved our team from the laborious tasks of keystrokes to creating real value for our customers.
Janice: They benefit because RPA ensures the moment their request hits the inbox it’s actioned immediately. Naturally, we’re looking at identifying any other process that can be RPA driven.
Peri: They know the steps; they know the processes and guide you through all the things you need to consider when automating your processes. The conversations are based around “These are the processes you have, and your initial selection criteria needs to be based on how uniform or structured they are and how often they’re done”. It’s more system-based than simply a hunch. Once all the choices are analysed, they guide you through so you can make a logical decision. And once the decision is made, they continue to guide you along the process and how best to structure it. Once you hand over to Converga, their developers are clear on the structure needed and put it all together. It’s in the testing environment that many of the best conversations occur. Daily face-to face meetings ensure that everything is on the right path. And once it’s in production, they continue to give support or suggesting any further way the processes could be improved. That’s what I really love about the Converga relationship - the way they examine closely, the way the processes work – observing and then making suggestions about how we can improve the success rate even further.
Janice: It’s definitely the way Canon is moving forward. We’d never go back to manual processes. The Converga team are fantastic.
• Transform your business with a focus on significant time savings, reduction of human error and elimination of outstanding or payments misapplied.
• Engage your teams in more satisfying and profitable tasks, including value-added roles in customer service, analysis and decision making.
• Results that save your customers time and energies with faster, more efficient transactions and reports.
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