November 11th, 2015

Amey Limited

Amey Communities Limited is an infrastructure support service provider. Working alongside local county councils and other public sector organisations, it delivers services, including highway and rail management and maintenance, facilities management, and waste collection. It is a subsidiary of Spanish company, Group Ferrovial.

Challenge 

Automate time-consuming manual envelope insertion and replace older franking machines that couldn’t cope with the level of output.

Results 

Immediate increase in efficiency and cost saving, with four buildings’ envelope insertion demands now completed from one site.

Solution 

Neopost’s IS-5000 franking machine is a high output model capable of automatically weighing and franking 260 items per minute. Neopost’s DS-200 folder inserter provides full flexibility ensuring the insertion of specialist items without disruption.

Method 

As a working relationship already existed, Neopost was trusted to provide its recommendation to help solve the challenge.
 

We've easily saved a third of our postal expenditure due to the Royal Mail Mailmark

-Dave Cox 

Post and Courier Manager 

The Challege 

The Amey branch that supports Kent County Council sends around 1.6 million postal items annually. These documents often include invoices, contracts and letters informing residents of planned closures and improvements. Many of these items required manual envelope insertion as the existing folder inserter could only process at a low speed. This was a time-consuming and labour intensive process which was impacting the team’s ability to complete other tasks.

“The team consists of nine members spread across four buildings and having to manually insert items into envelopes was a drain on resources,” said Dave Cox, post and courier manager, Amey Ltd. “We also relied on a number of older franking machines that weren’t efficient or cost effective when considering our postal volumes. Furthermore, we were unable to view the status of each machine remotely, which meant we had to spend valuable time and resources travelling to each of the four offices in person.”

The Process

Realising the need to decrease pressure on the team, and with a strong relationship already in place, Amey turned to Neopost for advice. Indeed, the mail machines that were already in use by Amey – which included an IJ-90, IS-420 and two IS-6000 franking machines, as well as a DS-86 folder inserter – were all Neopost models. 

Neopost suggested upgrading the IJ-90to an IS-5000 franking machine and replacing the folder inserter with a DS-200 to immediately improve mailing efficiency. Within a few weeks, the machines were in place and ready to use.

Solution 

The IS-5000 is an automated franking machine, developed to process large volumes of mail. With the ability to automatically weigh and frank 260 items per minute, the need for human interaction is minimised. Furthermore, the model provides accurate reporting for postal budgets and can be utilised as a standalone cost centre. With the addition of Royal Mail Mailmark® franking, a specialised service that can provide customers with significant postal cost savings.
 

Similarly, the DS-200 folder inserter has been developed to boost mailing efficiency. With an exclusive scanning device, the model can read any type of coding such as OMR one and two tracks, 1D barcodes and 2D datamatrix. This unique feature provides full flexibility, allowing specialist inserting tasks, such as C4 and booklets to be completed without disruption. The model also provides detailed reporting and integral networking capabilities meaning the statistics can be accessed remotely from any location.

Delivery and Results 

Thanks to the IS-5000 franking machine and DS-200 inserter, Amey has significantly improved the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of its outgoing mail processes. The user-friendly interfaces allow for easy setup, while automation capability ensures the team is no longer required to spend valuable time processing mail by hand. In fact, the output of the DS-200 is so great that the envelope insertion for all four buildings is now conducted by just one machine. The networking function of the models also enables data to be accessed and collected off-site, removing the need to physically travel to each one. 

“When considering the time and cost savings provided by the IS-5000 franking machine, we expect the model to achieve payback in nine months,” said Cox.

Customer Feedback 

“The time savings the IS-5000 and DS-200 provide are huge,” continued Cox. “Considering we send over a million items annually, having letters automatically inserted, weighed and franked has provided the team with a significant boost in their ability to juggle workloads. Furthermore, the cost reductions are notable – we’ve easily saved a third of our postal expenditure due to the Royal Mail Mailmark®. 

“I’m very happy with the machines and also the service that Neopost provides. We currently have two older IS-6000 franking machines in use and we’ll be upgrading them within the next few months.”
 

I'm very happy with the machines and also the sevice that Neopost provides. 

We currently have two older IS-6000 franking machines in use and we'll be upgrading them within the next few month.