The Innovation Track for Subrogation

Expertise in Subrogation is not just about technology but the innovation behind experienced human capital

Subrogration outsourcing

As a business, VWi has spent the last 50 years in the subrogation space, with a deep understanding of the laws and regulations of managing subrogation cases. We are continuously working on our recruiting and finding people who are really enthusiastic about learning the nuances of subrogation. This development of the next generation of experts isn’t so easy for our clients as the people who founded the key processes are buried in a serious time crunch as they try to keep up with the day to day business. So how do you make this sector exciting for the next generation? More important, how do you share the knowledge in a meaningful way to develop the next wave of experts?

Lets start with what’s happening to the experts

A new term has emerged called, claims adjuster burnout. Cases are increasing, claims are getting more complex and the process has become increasing more complicated overtime. Add to this the growing demand of providing an excellent customer experience with a single point of contact, never ending phone calls and a full inbox. It takes an extreme professional with years of experience to manage the end-to-end process. Add to this the complication of age and experience of these industry veterans and you start to understand what will happen next in an industry desperate for the next generation of proficiency.

An evolving job market

The insurance industry has seen a major impact. As the number of claims per year starts to meet or exceed the number of premiums, the industry is thirsty for talent. In a study by the Jacobson Group and Ward Group, they found that from 2010-2015, the number of positions in the claims management area has increased year over year. As the need for more claims adjusters continues to climb, many companies are turning to temp labor, but that merely defers the problem with a lower cost solution, but seldom creates those long-term employees that are now don their way to retirement.

The need for claims adjusters continues to climb year over year.

Using innovation to engage the workforce

Challenging the incoming workforce to be innovative will be essential to keeping them engaged long term. Just as the advancement of technologies has improved our daily lives, innovation in the workplace will be key to keeping them interested and, more importantly, tap into the knowledge of the retiring experts.

As our own business grows, we work with our teams to identify those key employees that show promise in both managing the process and looking for creative ways to circumvent problems. By pulling them into conversations that focus on improving processes or identifying waste within the business, we help them grow to the next level. It also helps them see a path to a career that perhaps wasn’t previously on their radar.

Looking to the future

As the laws that govern the subrogation industry become more stringent, the future becomes more clear that competent people are necessary to foster long term growth and stability. Add to that an incoming workforce that is impulsive and fickle about their employment opportunities and you have a compounded problem. Conversely, VWi sees this as an opportunity to take the subrogation industry to a new level.

By engaging the technology minded Millennials to work with the experience of the Generation Xers and the leadership of the Baby Boomers, VWi is leveraging the key strengths of each generation of the workforce to find solutions that improves the claims management process, reduces risk and increases revenue.

Building Best-in-Class Global Collections Outcomes with Tricon Energy

Global 3rd Party Collections Program to Maximize Late Stage Accounts Receivables Recoveries

Business People Communication Corporate Team Concept

Operating a successful global business in a challenging global economy is a masterful art. It takes a deep level of experience and collaboration to lead a complex set of requirements with customers and varying financial models. Tricon Energy, an industry leader in global trade and petrochemical derivative distribution engages in such a commercial endeavor through the physical movement and marketing of industrial chemicals and polymers to the global market.

Rodrigo Guillen, Tricon Energy Credit & Collection Analyst, is a key expert in bringing together Tricon and VWi to solve a global issue – How do we locally and globally support our customers and find resources to resolve and collect our invoices? Easy statement to make but not always easily accomplished in such geographic locations as West Africa, Turkey and Congo, among others. These are necessary markets and as a sales focused, growth minded company, Rodrigo and Tricon are making this expansion a success using credit and quality of service as a tool.

So where does VWi come into the equation? VWi’s roots started in the 3rd party collection space and have expanded globally over the past 25+ years to include end-to-end services and domain expertise in credit to cash. Bundle together a global platform enabling the front-end process (First Party) with 3rd Party collections and you have a complete solution of collections and reconciliations in one provider. Tricon recognized this unique capability and quickly tapped into our resources. As Rodrigo stated, “The global expertise and capabilities in credit and collections enabled by technology made the choice to utilize VWi earlier this year a low risk engagement. Their people are the key to our early and impressive results but when coupled with the full depth of a global solution, our results over the past few months have exceeded our expectations.”

Finance professionals such as Rodrigo have more options than ever to optimize a crucial area of the financial value chain—credit and collections management. Increasingly this need for a strong partner in the end-to-end process is needed to cure delinquent receivables while maintaining customer relationships. VWi in this example with Tricon brings three key components: People, Process and Technology. Extensive knowledge and expertise in a tenured team of people, key processes to maximize recoveries with a high level of customer experience and technology aimed at drawing analytics and insights to determine a custom designed collection strategy.

Empowering the Team

Informed and empowered people form the front line of effective credit and collections management. The trick is keeping the credit and collections team up to date and enabled, particularly as operations grow in size and complexity. Compliance is an area where we as an industry have no choice to be at the top of our game. The others are effectiveness and efficiency; Manual collections processes are filled with routine and non-productive tasks. The right information doesn’t always flow to the right places at the right times, so a unique platform coupled with experienced teams are the key ingredients to success.

Streamlining the Processes

Processes give shape and guidance to a collections team’s activities and provide a context for measuring its effectiveness, but business processes aren’t always perfect. In the revenue and receivables arena, which culminates in credit and collections, processes are frequently disjointed as they cut across multiple departments and span geographies. Sometimes, certain parts of a larger process get automated, but these islands of automation have to be bridged, and that is usually by strong insights and analysis.

With Tricon, VWi recognized through experience and insights how to structure the processes for effective analytics, communication and productivity. When enabled with industry expertise, the results of everyone playing on the same field – client, partner and customer – success is achieved.

Leveraging Technology for Visibility and Control

Technology can empower people and drive more effective processes, but it takes a platform, not a piecemeal approach. In the collections process, as elsewhere in the financial value chain, the proper implementation of technology can drive end-to-end visibility, improved controls and ensured compliance.

The VWi platform approach provides visibility across disparate information systems and processes by concentrating reliable and timely information in a single spot, thus providing a common source for business process pulse checks and for the application of consistent metrics to measure performance. The platform also enables common technologies to be applied to ensure consistent controls and practices enterprise-wide. Automated workflows to optimally guide team members through complex processes, as well as the automatic application of business rules to enforce policies. Moreover, in centralizing information and automating processes across all relevant systems such as business credit analytics and local payment trends, a platform enabling financial data and decisions to be documented and auditable, thus freeing the focus for the critical role in execution of customer contact and invoice resolution.

In the collections process, this can all translate into:

  • Automated company and credit analysis and evaluation of processes: Skip tracing and payment modeling
  • Dynamic rules-based account segmentation and country level strategies: Payment probability and risk
  • Comprehensive portfolio management and analysis: Identifying areas for continuous improvement
  • Collections task prioritization and automation: Using the tools to prioritize collector efficiency
  • Automated dispute management and resolution: Workflow to separate disputes for skill set alignment
  • Real-time insights, analytics and alerts to keep clients informed: Transparency of the end-to-end process

The Result is Success

Over the past 6 months, this approach to end-to-end customer management has enabled the company to rack up considerable recoveries, efficiency and flexible benefits. Collections expenses for Tricon have been cut based upon the outcomes generated and by using a contingency fee model. Added value through new process efficiencies have enabled the company to re-focus internal personnel on higher value tasks and allowed for the company to explore more alternate channels to increase sales. For VWi, our collection experts are praised for their creativity and dedication to Tricon and rewarded with expanding scope.

The Efficiency and Effectives Engineer

Credit to Cash strategic enablement

The evolution of technology and its effects to transform process is moving at a rapid rate. Acceleration of process automation and how the task oriented, labor arbitrage model in outsourcing has reinvented itself. A substantial path to gaining efficiencies and effectiveness as a business model requires little in the way of validation since we have all seen the reaction of improvement to some of the most intricate business processes.  As an engineer focused in the area, I have had the opportunity to see this new era of automation occur and also as a CEO gain from the benefits not only for client but in our own back office efficiencies.

Pioneering companies, and the people who comprise them, understand the possibility and are finding industrialization and repurpose for these core application with little barrier or limitation in the art of the possible for credit to cash efficiency and effectiveness. In its most basic form, we create, develop, and transform these processes, whether they are completely new solutions or improvements over existing ones. One extremely important aspect to this new world is the client centric approach. Why is this important? Not all organizations, industries or business culture is the same. This may be challenged by the thought relative to an invoice is an invoice or cash application is a standardized process but this is just not the case. In working with a vast base of clients from manufacturing, consumer products, financial services, media and entertainment and healthcare, creative customization to achieve the business outcomes is always created by ways of collaboration and specialization.

We are in a new era, where technology-led processes are generating a different kind of competitiveness in various business segments. The market needs to be asking providers ‘are you able to architect efficiencies in the process?’ The proof comes from careful collaboration and deep listening to the client organization. Technology enablement and its true outcomes are generation when the domain expert as a provider invests in the client relationship with acceptance and accountability for results. Couple this with the passion of people to solve and resolve complex issue and the synergy to drive this exciting collaboration takes hold.

I view the business service provider role as more than simply deploying people to automate business processes. Rather, I look at what we do as being differentiated by engineering that established ourselves apart from the in-house or captive world. Collective expertise and specific domain and process understanding give us a position to solve some of the most immediate challenges in business today.

Throughout my career seeing the cycles of recession and following recovery, successful companies in any sector – and especially the credit to cash services sector – if this mind set of innovation has not been adopted or sort out, your credit strategy has inhabited growth. While we deliver solutions experience and the passion for technology – the process efficiency is as good as the people and customers it enables, the creativity in our new world of smaller barriers to efficiency makes the possibilities endless and outcomes substantial.

– Bob Williams, CEO of VWi

Hello Durable Medical Equipment Industry.

Are you advancing your automation agenda for working capital optimization?

Healthcare Reform has put a strain on budgets and ushered in new complexities when it comes to collections and overall receivables management. One of the key issues is the lack of capability through investment in technology and automation. As budgets continue to be compressed this critical area of advancing automation to ease manual processes and increase cycle time to cash is problematic. But this doesn’t mean the problem can’t be solved with strong partnerships.

We’re here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be as difficult as it sounds. Leveraging collaboration through domain specific partnerships helps. Credit to Cash providers in an outsourced partnership can take some of the complications out of the matter by understanding the new world and customer complexity to solve the impact and the fine details toward improve working capital.

In anticipation of the many changes occurring over the past years, most companies within Durable Medical Equipment industry are working to update their finance and accounting systems and taking into consideration changes that may impact the timely collection of invoices. Financial systems need to be enabled to deliver and support flexibility to reduce impact on business operations. Question is, do you find the capital to fund these initiatives or partner with a provider who brings technology with services?

You can start with analysis to understand how this change can affect the customer relationship. I believe the approach of a specialist by customer and transaction type can support mitigating disputes and reducing complexity to the AR cycle. This can easily be achieved with the right platform and in an outsourced model but maybe problematic, due to expenses, in a captive or shared services infrastructure.

Additionally, the comparable analysis of your product portfolio, revenues and customers will help to better understand the current and new customers, who are the end users, intended use of the product is. Only then can accurately estimate and therefore determine what the true potential for optimized DSO should be.

We believe that determining how customers transact invoice payment comes from a number of factors. Deep business analytics and accurately targeting can change the slow paying behaviors. New advances in analytics and payment modeling have made the DME collection process more effective than ever but an investment or a change to an industry leading domain specific BPO partner is required.

Beyond analysis and system updates, comes the complexity of recording and reporting to ensure you’re in compliance with tax regulations. This requires more oversight and controls from a compliance perspective but also requires more diligence in operations – from taking the order to accruing revenue.

The issue may not be the only provision to slice into profits, but the need for additional resources across F&A becomes another issue burdening business with more expenses. With the availability of technology, just like any particular process, the need for manual intervention will be removed. Additionally, analytics and automation, to drive risk mitigation, support a clear view of what can be expected in the long term. By coupling these strategies you effectively minimize the manual and labor intensive processes, see a reduction of credit risk and sustain the most valuable production actions being delivered.

This may take time for some but others utilizing an outsource strategy today, the expertise and enablement is already leveraged. Business process outsourcing and technology solutions, which come with such engagements, make the entire process seamless and can help ensure you are being diligent in optimizing your working capital. At the same time, controls will ensure the customer experience is being considered to avoid losing what are ultimately good customers who need creative solutions.

David Gallagher – Strategic Business Development

Patient Experience Across Revenue Cycle Management

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Patient Experience Across Revenue Cycle Management: It Counts in Cash

Over the 18 years I’ve been in the healthcare outsourcing field of RCM, I’ve learned efficiency in healthcare billing doesn’t have to be complicated. Although many trends have come and gone, there are 5 key rules that drive highly successful people to consistently exceed expectations and are very straightforward, more so than you may imagine. So let’s count it down:

  • 5. Cohesion – Values and culture act as a North Star on the path to accomplishing our goals. Aligning outsource partners with your internal values creates a unified team with vision and priorities. In our case, as a RCM outsourcing provider, we adopt and look to absorb our client’s culture. A successful partnership is cohesive and transparent with effective communication and trust flowing in both directions.
  • 4. Expertise – Of course, this seems straightforward but healthcare business process outsourcing is immensely encompassing when we delve a little deeper. True expertise in healthcare RCM goes far beyond the hard mechanics such as compliance and efficiency. True expertise includes factors such as empathy (identifying with patients on a personal level, understand to what they are going through). It is having the emotional acumen to respectfully guide a positive resolution, helping the patients, their families and our partners to smoothly navigate the path to recovery.
  • 3. Technology – Pressure will continue to be applied to budgets driving the need for efficiency, automation, and analytics providing insight to the changing conditions ahead. With the right platform effectiveness of a team can be realized, quantified and refined. With the proper balance of People, Process and Technology phenomenal performance gains can be made. Though, in seeking efficacy multipliers such as these, it is important to never lose sight of the patient relationship.
  • 2. Relationship – With the easing of manual processes, it is crucial to leverage human capital intelligently. Performance in the healthcare RCM space and the patient relationship are directly intertwined. The key, focusing the right resources where they count and in turn driving the most valuable level of care and relationship to successfully cure past due balances. The better the patient relationship, the better the payment metrics. The better the payment metrics, the better the client relationship. 

    As we know, patient satisfaction is highly correlated to a patient’s choice physician and facility should they require care in the future. Which leads us to rule #1:

  • 1. Patient Experience – Parents, grandparents, spouses, friends, family and loved ones. The person on the other side of phone calls or correspondence may be anyone these, and under a different set of circumstances it could be you or me on the other side this exchange. Make the conversation matter. Make it bigger than just a call to recover a bill. Raising the bar to what a positive patient experience is. All of the previous rules lead to this point. Patient Experience is the number one priority which multiplies all others including desire to pay. Focus on delivering an informative, helpful, compliant, valuable and pleasant patient experience and all other key metrics will rise as well
  • Patient Experience is the key to greater collections in healthcare, and through my 18 years in the field, these are the essentials to excelling in Revenue Cycle Management that I’ve found most effective for our clients, our teams and myself.

    – Erin Wilson, Healthcare BPO Project Manager of VWi