The Kollecto+ debt collection platform makes collection processes run more smoothly and efficiently.
Kollecto+ is the centralized debt collection platform of the EOS Group. After years in development, the rollout has been completed by EOS in Croatia, the first of many countries to introduce the software. A progress report.
- The work processes in the various EOS national subsidiaries are largely identical.
- A centralized debt collection platform is designed to exploit these synergies and save costs, e.g. for development.
- Bosnia, Serbia, Slovenia and Romania will be the next countries to roll out the software and another eight countries are to be connected to the system within the next five years.
Debt collection software is basically the mainstay of a debt collection service provider. It’s where all data about collection cases and defaulting payers are collected, retrieved and processed. Until now, a lot of EOS national subsidiaries have been developing their own software. In future, Kollecto+ is set to ensure that processes are standardized and synergies better exploited across borders to ensure a smoother and more efficient collection process.
“In debt collection, 80 to 90 percent of the work processes are very similar across all countries. The remaining 10 to 20 percent can be readily configured in the system and adapted to the respective circumstances of the specific country,” says Igor Stojancevic, the project manager responsible for migrating the system in Croatia, where the software was piloted. But the Kollecto+ project began much earlier.
Three steps forward, one step back.
When the development team from Romania began its work just under five years ago, there was still no preconceived idea about what the outcome should be. The only stipulation was to create an IT system that all EOS national subsidiaries could work with in the same way. To this end, the developers worked closely with the project teams from the various EOS national subsidiaries, for example with Igor and his team in Croatia. “The development was a very agile, step-by-step process,” Igor recalls. “We built it module by module, always three steps forward and one step back again.”
It’s no coincidence that the developer team is from Romania, as this is where the precursor software Kollecto was developed. Kollecto+, however, is not so much an update as a general revision. A look at the make-up of the team is a clue to how much the project is being prioritized, as the project is being conducted with the backing of none other than Marwin Ramcke, in his capacity as EOS Group Director with responsibility for Eastern Europe.
We built it module by module, always three steps forward and one step back again. Igor Stojancevic, Project Manager at EOS in Croatia
The actual rollout in Croatia began in July 2017 and comprised four phases. Firstly, the collection cases for secured receivables were migrated from the old to the new system in January 2018. This was followed by the unsecured cases in July of the same year and then the new finance module in May 2019. Finally, the unsecured receivables were purchased and the legal department was connected to the new system at the end of 2019. In the end, almost 490,000 cases were transferred to the new system. The data not only came from the old collection software but also from the legal system, various Excel files and many other sources. The migration of the unsecured cases from receivables purchases alone took four whole days. The most important part of the project was then to stabilize the system and clean the data after completion of the migration process.
Shared costs and experiences.
Today, more than 200 members of staff at EOS in Croatia are working with Kollecto+ and all six departments are connected to the system. In a questionnaire a few months after the system went live they shared their initial experiences with the project team. It emerged that not every department experienced the changeover equally positively. Whereas the debt collection departments were highly satisfied, staff from the finance department felt that there was still work to be done. “One of the benefits of Kollecto+ is that it considerably simplifies work steps. However, in some areas we oversimplified the processes so that certain actions are now no longer possible,” says Igor. “This means that the extensive feedback we got from the questionnaire is even more important, because it shows us where there is still room for improvement.”
Even if everything is not yet running perfectly, the benefits of having a centralized system are still apparent. The more of our companies that are working with Kollecto+, the more experience can be incorporated into the ongoing development of the system. Any problems occurring today are likely to have been rectified long before the rollout of the next country. Every national subsidiary that has the capacity to do so is also contributing new ideas and functions to the system. “In Poland and North Macedonia they are currently working on the first automated processes. This means that in future there will be fewer and fewer repetitive work steps,” says Igor. All users of the system are sharing the costs for its ongoing development.
Other national subsidiaries on the starting blocks.
“We are part of a continuous process,” says Igor. Even though his active role in the project team is over for now, the development effort is by no means finished. Today, Igor is using his experience to support the project teams at other EOS national subsidiaries. Bosnia, Serbia, Slovenia and Romania are on the starting blocks, and eight other countries are set to follow in the next five years.
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Photo credits: Getty Images, EOS (3)