Reconomy, the UK’s market leader in outsourced waste management and recycling services, who has been supporting edoc since the beginning of the project, is currently undertaking a series of customer trials, before rolling out the innovative system to key customers next year.
As a business Reconomy handle over 40,000 waste transfer notes each month, equating to more than half a million per annum. By moving over to edoc next year, Reconomy is hoping that it will be able to streamline the businesses administration, improve compliance and reduce time-consuming administration, which will in turn help them make significant cost savings.
“edoc will help us to solve a number of basic compliance and efficiency challenges that we currently face with the paper waste transfer note (WTN) system.
“We regularly find that WTN’s are returned with information missing meaning that our customer services team spend time chasing customers for additional details. With the electronic system this will not happen because all items must be completed in order to submit the form, making the whole process much more straightforward and less time-consuming.”
We asked Brian Marshall, the Environment and Compliance Manager at Reconomy to share his top tips for waste management companies wanting to move over to edoc.
Why is Reconomy moving to edoc?
Reconomy has been a keen contributor of edoc since the beginning of the project and quickly identified not only the benefits the new system would have for them as a business, but also the impact it could have on waste management across the UK.
Brian added “edoc just makes everything simpler when it comes to waste management and complements our existing Customer Portal focused on improving waste data and reporting. The whole process is much easier and more efficient, not only does it eliminate laborious administration and the burden of filing and storing countless pieces of paper, it also provides a comprehensive electronic trail of everyone involved in the process. ”
How is Reconomy rolling edoc out to its customers?
Reconomy has initially decided to run a six month trial on the use of edoc with a half a dozen of its customers. The customers they have chosen have already shown a keen interest in the benefits that the edoc programme can bring so were happy to be involved.
Brian said, “We have chosen to take this approach with just a few of our customers because we want to ensure that we fully understand the requirements of all parties when it comes to generating an online waste transfer note, while also establishing best practise in preparation for the phased implementation of edoc across our business next year. We want to appreciate where suppliers and customers impinge on the waste management process and where there might be gaps that we need to fill.”
One of the businesses trialling edoc with Reconomy is UK leading construction and regeneration group, Morgan Sindall. Head of Sustainability at Morgan Sindall, Brian Handcock said, “We have been a keen supporter of edoc since the beginning of the project and so when we discovered that our waste management company, Reconomy, were planning on trialling the use of edoc with customers we were keen to be involved.”
Brian Handcock continued “We have already noticed the benefits it has brought to the business, particularly when it comes to day-to-day administration. However, for us, a key function of edoc is the tool that helps you to track and monitor your overall waste production. With the reduction of excavation waste at the forefront of our business objectives for 2014/15, this is an extremely valuable and useful tool for the business.”
During the six month trial period with its customers Reconomy, is working on developing the appropriate software to integrate edoc into its internal network. This will enable Reconomy to use the Application Programming Interface (API) system for making the transition over to edoc next year, which is the only way in which to use edoc effectively. The API system will ensure the transition is seamless for its customers as it will link directly to the company’s internal customer database, avoiding the customers having to register to use edoc themselves as they will already be set up on the system. The API software will also provide each customer with a unique ID code for using edoc, again helping to simplify the whole administrative process and transition phase.
Brian Marshall added, “We are extremely pleased with the progress of the trials so far and have received some great feedback from all the customers involved which we are taking on board and using to help make the process of moving over to edoc next year as smooth as possible.
“Once the trials have been completed and we are happy that the new API software works effectively and efficiently with our network, we will invite our largest 100 customers to join edoc. We want take a slow approach to moving everyone over by initially inviting the customers who produce the highest number of waste transfer notes each year over first and then inviting other customers to follow. Those with season tickets are our priority followed by the customers who create waste transfer notes on a less regular basis.
We feel that this approach will help us to manage to whole transitional process over to edoc much more easily. It will also allow our customer services team to dedicate more time to customers experiencing problems.”
Reconomy has already held a jointly run supplier engagement session on the benefits of edoc with the Environment Agency and trained all its supply chain managers, as they are in direct contact with its supply chain partners on a day to day basis so are able to communicate with them over the benefits of edoc and the processes involved. Nearer to the launch Reconomy will be training its customer services team through a series of workshops, so they will be able to handle enquiries directly.
Brian summed up “We are really excited about the implementation of edoc. We know it will have some fundamental benefits to both us as a business, our customers and the wider waste community so it can only be a positive move for the future.”
Brian Marshall’s top tips for waste management companies wanting to move to edoc:
1. Be prepared
Investigate the best way to integrate edoc into your internal network to help make the transition over to the electronic new system as easy and simple as possible. Most organisations will need to use the API link which will allow edoc to work alongside their own existing network. This will allow you to integrate edoc into your existing system. It will take time to develop and you will incur costs but they will be worth it in the long-run. If you need advice on how to integrate edoc into your network contact the edoc team directly.
2. Test the system
Undertake trials with a select number of customers to help you understand all the processes involved, where suppliers and customers impinge on the process and where there might be gaps that you need to fill. This will help you plan to transition over to edoc much more carefully. I would suggest undertaking a minimum of six month trials with a least half a dozen different sized businesses. This will allow you to understand the process fully and the different requirements of each individual customer.
3. Make it simple
Set up individual ID codes for all customers and use the tool to invite them to register with edoc to make the move over to edoc as simple and straight forward for your customers as possible.
4. Communicate with your customers
Make sure all your customers are fully informed of your plans to move over to edoc, the processes involved and how it will impact on them. Use newsletters, your supply chain managers and workshops to inform your customers of your plans to move over, how it will impact on them and how to use it. You can hold face to face workshops or webinars to show customers how to use the system.
5. Training your team
Train your customer services team to support your customers should they experience any problems or have any questions or queries. There are training materials, guides and videos available on edoconline.co.uk which can help you understand all the processes involved in creating a waste transfer note from start to finish.
edoc is designed to be intuitive and simple to use but why not take a look at our resources available to help your business get started.