In order to better serve its 3+ million customers, a Fortune 500 energy company based in the Southern US migrated from a legacy Report Distribution and Management System (RDMS) to a modern Enterprise Content Management (ECM) solution to archive customer bills, statements, and other documents. The IT organization was tasked with ensuring that existing line-of-business applications and customer service processes — including ad hoc and batch reprint requests — integrated seamlessly with the new ECM solution.
Throughout the life cycle of the legacy RDMS, the energy company had developed many different processes to support common document reprint scenarios. The primary reprint requests focus on reprinting bills for customers who had not received an invoice that had been mailed to them or who had lost their document. These customers call the company’s customer support line to submit a request, or their bill becomes delinquent, and the company’s accounts receivable representatives subsequently contact the customer.
Regardless of the requests’ origins, missing or lost documents must be reprinted and sent to customers expediently. The energy company had implemented an automated workflow process that collected reprint requests every day and, at a specific times, initiated a reprint job that retrieved the electronic files for each of the requested documents from the archive. The documents were then processed to add cover sheets with new addresses and watermarks, and the batches of documents to be printed and mailed were distributed to the correct destinations for fulfillment. Many steps required manual intervention.
Duplicating the same automated process with the new ECM-based archive so that none of the company’s existing CSR and line-of-business applications/processes required changing was a critical consideration for the company. When the company researched modern ECM systems capable of supporting their desired end-state, they discovered that none of them natively supported the level of automated reprint functionality required.
The company selected Crawford Technologies’ PRO Reprint Server solution to meet their requirement to deploy a flexible, completely automated reprint capability that would not disrupt their existing applications and processes. Using this software, the company is able to store their original AFP print files, compressed and indexed, in their modern ECM repository. A web server based API is then used to programmatically request reprints of documents from the archive. The requested documents are retrieved via the API and batched for processing and printing. Another automated process then picks up the batches of documents, performs document reengineering as required, and sends the batches to their print center or other company location for printing and mailing. The entire automated process is monitored and log files created.
Since the energy company wanted to use their existing customer service systems and applications, a straightforward interface program was built by CrawfordTech to intercept the reprint requests and call the web API to retrieve and reprint the documents.
The energy company’s IT group is very pleased that they can use new technology such as the web server based RESTful API and their selected ECM repository to handle legacy applications transparently. Their customized reprint solution supports hundreds of daily reprint requests without disrupting existing customer service processes, while fully automated processing saves the company approximately $1.6+ million annually compared to manual reprint processing.
Another important benefit for the company is the ability to implement modern Customer Experience (CX) applications that share the same ECM repository. In the future, the company plans to provide self-service mobile apps for their customers that will be
built and deployed on top of PRO Reprint Server, providing improved CX options and reducing customer service costs.