Workflow Automation

1. Client:

A digital print and direct mail management company

2. Issue:

The organisation was receiving data files from its clients – these needed to be updated and output in a format ready to print. Due to the number of files and processing complexity manual updating was no longer viable, automating was necessary.

3. Solution:

To find a specialist company that could automate the processing.

4. What we did:

We were approached by the organisation in order to quote for an automation project. We visited the client and were shown an example of the raw input file and what was required as an output file. There were several requirements:

  • To create a salutation from given input fields
  • To ensure addresses were correctly formatted, title cased and in their own field:
    • Addresses were supplied in one field and required splitting
    • Addresses contained commas and return characters that needed removing
  • To split one input file into several output files, based on the content of a given field
  • To add a sequence number and uppercase the postcodes

5. Outcome:

The client made a quick decision – the data files were stacking up the client side and processing for their client was required ASAP. We were awarded the project and split it into two parts, as part of an agile approach:

  1. MUS (minimum usable subset) – providing this would allow the client to process the files, and get through a backlog
  2. Rest – these were the other parts of the project that were not required immediately

The project has subsequently developed further. Our agile approach has allowed the project to develop organically, with add-ons being added without causing delays.