17 July 2014

Essex County Council Case Study

The only way is Neopost for Essex County Council

Essex County Council is the county council that governs the non-metropolitan county of Essex in England and serves a population of over one million residents.


Meet the needs of complex mailings with complete cost trackability.


Fully automated mailings, fully automatic cost tracking.


Smart, feature rich busy easy-to-use DS-90 folder inserter.


Utillise Neopost OMR system to allow hassle-free changeover.

We need to track costs accurately back to cost centres and the DS-90 automatically manages this. 

Nick Fewster- Essex County Council 

The Challenge 

Nick Fewster, post room supervisor at Essex County Council, compiles a weekly timetable to schedule departmental mailing jobs. For example, library ‘overdue’ notes are processed daily, while invoices for home help are distributed weekly. The council mailings also include 37,000 annual pension statements. Half of the mailings are cut sheet and the remainder are continuous stationery, requiring trimming by an online guillotine.“We’d had our previous folder inserter for 15 years, and it became prone to breakdowns. On this old machine, it was almost impossible for us to solve problems without calling out an engineer. Working to such a tight schedule, we just couldn’t afford for the machine to be out of service. And with more and more leaflets and stapled items being included in the mailings, the old machine was simply not up to the job.“Because we have so many different departments and varying demands, we needed to track costs accurately back to cost centres,” said Nick. 

The Process

Neopost worked with the team at Essex County Council to completely understand existing processes and their needs for greater speed and accountability before recommending a solution that would also allow a pain-free changeover.

The Solution 

The DS-90 folder inserter enabled Nick to full automate a wide range of Departmental mailings whilst also offering complete accuracy in measuring and allocating costs. “We need to track costs accurately back to cost centres and the DS-90 automatically manages this accounting process and we use the information provided to recharge our customers on a monthly basis,” said Nick.


Delievery and Results 

Neopost managed the changeover so that Essex County Council could continue its existing optical mark reading operations without IT changes. This was achieved through the ability of Neopost OMR systems to read other manufacturers’ existing OMR codes. Installing flexible reading, and using an SO-3 sort unit with two conveyor stackers, enabled name and group sorting, plus shifting functions.Before the Neopost machine, if the letters were too bulky or required folding in a particular way, the 12-strong mailroom team had to manually fold and stuff envelopes. This wasted the expensive resource of staff time, and took people away from other duties. It also made it difficult to track back to cost centres. The beauty of the DS-90 is that it can be expanded to up to four stations and is capable of handling up to 120,000 pieces of mail per month. The DS-90 has nine pre-set jobs, which enables the user to simply press the ‘start’ button to carry out the task. It can handle a wide range of envelopes and applications, so invoice and statement mailings are effortless.

Customer Feedback 

“All we have to do is programme in the required settings and wait for it to finish the job. The ability to carry out all these requirements was key in our decision to choose Neopost, along with the simplicity and versatility of the DS-90 machine” concluded Nick.


The DS-90 has nine pre- set jobs which enables the user to simply press the 'start' button to carry out the task.