by July 25, 2013 0 comments

The debt servicing process involves collecting payments from delinquent customers, issuing a payment receipt and updating the bank records for the same. ICICI Bank collects payments from its delinquent customers through its network of over 1200 partners and 5000 executives. There were many loopholes in this collection process. Since the payments were collected by the bank’s partners, there was an uncertain time gap between the actual payment and the capturing of that payment into the bank’s system, CAPS (Collection Activities Processing System). The receipts handed out by executives to customers were hand-written, and were manually entered into CAPS, leading to human error. Reconciliation activities therefore took a long time after payments were collected and entered into the system. Moreover, until the executive submitted the payment to the bank, there was no way of knowing the collection status, leading to a lot of float money in the system. Moreover, customers also didn’t have any other proof of having made the payment other than the hand-written receipt.

The Implementation

The mobile application MARC (which works on Android & Symbian based phones) was developed using which payment receipts can be generated on handheld Blutooth printers. The application allows collection executives to view cases allotted to them on their mobile phones.
The front end of MARC let’s executive perform a number of operations. They are issued unique login credentials, which are validated by CAPS over GPRS. Once logged in, executives can view financial and demographic details of a customer, update a customer’s contact details, update follow up with customer in the form of trails, update payment details of a customer transaction, generate payment receipts on a paired Bluetooth printer, and even push an SMS and email confirmation about the payment to the customer.

Company Scenario

Before deployment: Manual distribution of blank receipt books and details of delinquent customer to executives of channel partners for payment collection. A lot of float money in the system due to time lag between payment collection and its updation into CAPS.

What was deployed: A mobile app for Android and Symbian smartphones that distributes customers details to field executives and let’s them update payment details and print receipts from handheld Bluetooth printer no the spot.

After deployment: Elimination of float money. Man hours saved in reconciliation activities. Paper and hassles saved of issuing blank paper receipt books and later reconciling the hand-written receipts that were returned.

Implementation partner: In-House

Challenges Faced[image_library_tag 021/82021, style=”float: right;” alt=”ddsga” ,default]

One of the biggest challenge was the diverse set of handsets owned by the field executives. Most of these phones were low-end, so different settings were applicable for just about every model. It therefore required a lot of hand-holding between trainers and executives. Another challenge was to train the trainers themselves at each location, followed by the challenge of sensitizing the branches about the change of the payment receipt process.

The Result

Over 55,000 customers have been serviced ever since the launch of this app. It has resulted in eliminating the time gap between customer payment and its updation in the CAPS system, as everything is done through the mobile app over GPRS. Float money as a result has been eliminated from the system. Plus of course, the bank has saved a lot of man hours, which was otherwise wasted in reconciliation activities. There’s no indenting or distribution of paper based receipts, which saves both time and money.

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